: Perversity, Despair and Collapse
Edited by Kirsten Lodge
The sensationalism and morbid pessimism that characterized French decadence in the late nineteenth century quickly attracted converts throughout Europe, including Russia. The Dedalus Book of Russian Decadence: Perversity, Despair and Collapse brings together horrifying, dramatic and erotic short stories and poetry, most of which have never before been translated into English, by the most decadent Russian writers. It includes scandalous writings by the well-known authors Valery Briusov, Leonid Andreyev, Fedor Sologub and Zinaida Gippius and acquaints English-speaking readers with the forgotten writer Aleksandr Kondratiev. These writers explore the darkest depths of the unconscious, as their characters experience sadism, masochism, rape, murder, suicide, and, in a story by Gippius, even passionate love for the dead.