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Book Title: Professor Martensi ärasõit|
The author of the book: Jaan Kross
Format files: PDF
The size of the: 866 KB
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Reader ratings: 4.3
Edition: Eesti Raamat
Date of issue: 1984
ISBN: No data
ISBN 13: No data
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Widely read in Europe, the Estonian novelist Jaan Kross is considered one of the most important writers of the Baltic region, and is an often-named candidate for the Nobel Prize. His new historical novel, Professor Martens' Departure, is written in a classic elegaic style reminiscent of Giuseppe di Lampedusa's The Leopard, and it evokes the complex world of czarist Russian society at the turn of the century. The character of Professor Martens is based on all actual official of the czarist reign, a distinguished Estonian jurist curiously reminiscent of Henry Kissinger. Faced with a dire financial crisis in Russia, Professor Martens orchestrates a major loan from the French government to stave off famine; as time passes, however, he realizes that he has managed to perpetuate a brutal regime that keeps its political prisoners in chains. This fictional memoir, written at the end of Martens' life, finds him reliving his past and questioning the degree to which he has sacrificed himself to maintain a corrupt regime, one that ultimately disdains both him and his people. Considered an outsider by the czar's adviser, Martens is nonetheless needed for his skills. Still, he is marginalized and kept in the shadows. Far more than just a political or philosophical novel, Professor Martens' Departure is an astonishing reconstruction of czarist Russia.
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Read information about the authorEstonia's best-known and most translated writer is Jaan Kross. He has been tipped for the Nobel Prize for Literature on several occasions for his novels, but did in fact start his literary career as a poet and translator of poetry. On his return from the labour camps and internal exile in Russia, where he spent the years 1946-1954 as a political prisoner, Kross renewed Estonian poetry, giving it new directions.
Kross began writing prose in the latter half of the 1960s, first with a film scenario "A Livonian Chronicle" (Liivimaa kroonika) which dealt with the life of the author Balthasar Russow (1536-1600) and which also became the subject of his first masterpiece "Between Three Plagues" (Kolme katku vahel, 1970), a suit of four novels. From that time onwards Kross moved by stage nearer to our present time in history, describing figures from Estonian history, first in short stories and novellæ, later in novels, also in writings where he has drawn upon his own experiences. The heroes of his novels tend to be of Estonian or Baltic German origin and cultured people, though on the margins of society and are usually faced with a moral dilemma of some sort.
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