Synopses & Reviews
"Whenever two Russians come together, the shadow of autocracy is with them...haunting the secret of their silences." First published in 1911, Under Western Eyes traces the experiences of Razumov, a young Russian philosophy student who is uninvolved in politics or protest. Against his will he gets drawn into the aftermath of a terrorist bombing directed against the Tsarist authorities. He finds himself pulled in different directions, at once by his conscience and ambitions, powerful and opposing political forces, but most of all by the emotions he is unable to suppress. Set in St Petersburg and Geneva, the novel is in part a critical response to Dostoevsky's Crime and Punishment, but it is also surprisingly modern. Viewed through the 'Western eyes' of Conrad's English narrator, Razumov's story forces the reader to confront the same moral issues: the defensibility of terrorist resistance to tyranny, the loss of individual privacy in a surveillance society, and the demands thrown up by the interplay of power and knowledge. This new edition is based on the first English edition text, and has a new chronology and bibliography.
Under Western Eyes traces the experiences of Razumov, a young Russian student caught up in the aftermath of a terrorist bombing. It deals with topical moral issues such as the defensibility of terrorist resistance to tyranny and the loss of individual privacy in a surveillance society. This new edition uses the English first edition text and has a new bibliography and chronology.