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A Hero of Our Time: Foreword by Vladimir Nabokov, Translation by Vladimir Nabokov and Dmitri Nabokov (Everyman's Library (Cloth)) (英語) ハードカバー – 1992/6/30

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ハードカバー, 1992/6/30
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In its adventurous happenings–its abductions, duels, and sexual intrigues–A Hero of Our Time looks backward to the tales of Sir Walter Scott and Lord Byron, so beloved by Russian society in the 1820s and ’30s. In the character of its protagonist, Pechorin–the archetypal Russian antihero–Lermontov’s novel looks forward to the subsequent glories of a Russian literature that it helped, in great measure, to make possible.

This edition includes a Translator’s Foreword by Vladimir Nabokov, who translated the novel in collaboration with his son, Dmitri Nabokov.

(Book Jacket Status: Jacketed)


Founded in 1906 by J.M. Dent, the Everyman Library has always tried to make the best books ever written available to the greatest number of people at the lowest possible price. Unique editorial features that help Everyman Paperback Classics stand out from the crowd include: a leading scholar or literary critic's introduction to the text, a biography of the author, a chronology of her or his life and times, a historical selection of criticism, and a concise plot summary. All books published since 1993 have also been completely restyled: all type has been reset, to offer a clarity and ease of reading unique among editions of the classics; a vibrant, full-color cover design now complements these great texts with beautiful contemporary works of art. But the best feature must be Everyman's uniquely low price. Each Everyman title offers these extensive materials at a price that competes with the most inexpensive editions on the market-but Everyman Paperbacks have durable binding, quality paper, and the highest editorial and scholarly standards.


  • ハードカバー: 232ページ
  • 出版社: Everyman's Library; Reprint版 (1992/6/30)
  • 言語: 英語
  • ISBN-10: 0679413278
  • ISBN-13: 978-0679413271
  • 発売日: 1992/6/30
  • 商品パッケージの寸法: 13.2 x 1.9 x 21.2 cm
  • おすすめ度: 5つ星のうち 5.0  レビューをすべて見る (1 件のカスタマーレビュー)
  • Amazon 売れ筋ランキング: 洋書 - 415,265位 (洋書の売れ筋ランキングを見る)
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5つ星のうち 5.0


3 人中、2人の方が、「このレビューが参考になった」と投票しています。 投稿者 pievysto 投稿日 2005/9/1
形式: ペーパーバック
a hero of our time is one of the memorable stories I have ever read and it still haunts me with its beauty. In a Quixotic Lermontov effortlessly takes the reader through the beauty of the Caucasian mountains wrapped up with the richness of Pechorin's experiences who is a young officer, an idealist turned cynic. It has been close to a decade since I last read this book, yet it continues to top the list of my favourite books.In a way everybody can relate to this book. DON QUIXOTE, UNION MOUJIK, WAR AND PEACE also feature among the top titles in my list.
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91 人中、90人の方が、「このレビューが参考になった」と投票しています。
The beauty of a poet's prose 2001/5/24
投稿者 Knut Oyangen - (
形式: ペーパーバック
Mikhail Lermontov was a poet by genius, a romantic at heart, yet by the time of his death at 26, he had already become something of a disillusioned realist. This tension between streaks in his personality is expressed openly in "A Hero of Our Time": the novel starts out as a romantic adventure beautified with most exquisite imagery, but is later transformed into a disquieting tale of manipulation and dark deeds.
The setting for this novel (which is really a loosely connected string of short stories) is the wild Caucasian mountains, to which Lermontov himself had been "exiled" to fight against the fierce Chechens. After the death of Pushkin, Lermontov took it upon himself to keep the great poet's legacy alive. The authorities did not take kindly to Lermontov's endeavour, and transferred the young officer to the war zone.
To 19th centrury Russian writers, the experience of the Caucasus and of 'Asiatics' in general was of tremendous value as a gauge of the value of Russian civilization. Juxtaposing Russian high society with the people of the steppes and the mountains became a familiar device in Russian literature, just like American Indians were used to symbolize the natural/unadulterated or the uncivilized/savage in American literature.
However, in "A Hero of Our Time" the officer Pechorin transcends the boundaries between culture and nature. In the early chapters of the book, Pechorin's adventures are described from outside, and seem extraordinary, bizzare, yet captivating. Later on, other stories are recounted in Pechorin's diary, and they draw a different picture of the modern hero: disillusioned, hateful, and profoundly unhappy. Life is a game which he has long mastered, he knows exactly how to play into people's pride, vanity and passion. Yet, at unlikely moments, a stir of long-forgotten emotion briefly produces a vulnerable, human hero with whom we, despite ourselves, are forced to identify...
38 人中、38人の方が、「このレビューが参考になった」と投票しています。
A Hero of Our Time 2004/11/21
投稿者 Damian Kelleher - (
形式: ペーパーバック
While out travelling, the narrator - who we can assume is either Lermontov himself, or a fictionalised version thereof - meets an old soldier, Maxim, who is more than happy to share a tale or three of his life. 'Lermontov' is an appreciative listener, taking notes and jotting down places and names. This is why he is travelling, this is why he talks to people: For their stories, theirs lives, their experiences that you 'cannot find in the romances of Russia'. Maxim tells him the story of Grigory Alexandrovich Pechorin, another soldier who once shared his quarters.

The picture he paints is an interesting one. On the one hand, he declares this Pechorin a great friend, but on the other, comments on his lack of emotion and coldness. He is capable of great generosity, and equally great hostility, the choice of which seems more a whim than for any reason. Maxim admires his education, wit and talent with women, but is offended by his lack of accountability.

In the story Maxim tells, he and Pechorin travel to an Asian warchief's home, where Pechorin is infatuated with the leader's young daughter, Bela. Through a series of manipulative events - all arranged by Pechorin, without remorse or even satisfaction - the daughter is kidnapped and the young soldier falls in love. The story ends tragically, though not unexpectedly, and serves to whet our appetites for who this man really is.

As narrated by Maxim, these stories are colorful, eventful, and written with great, broad strokes. Maxim is not a very educated man, and as such he is unable to properly paint the picture of Pechorin. But he has an admirable flair for description, which in his own, simple ways, are very effective. The narrator is more intelligent and inquisitive, commenting playfully on characters and situations, and viewing the world with an almost child-like glee. Everything is interesting, every road is worth travelling. The road he does happen to stumble upon is Pechorin's, and because the man being described is so different to the airy views of the narrator, it is interesting to watch him struggle with this enigma.

The next section - which forms the meat of the story - are three short pieces written by Pechorin that the narrator managed to acquire from Maxim. Taman, the first piece, is probably as interesting as Maxim's story, although it reveals little of Pechorin's character. The third piece, The Fatalist, serves as a rounding out of who and what Pechorin is, and acts well as a finisher, being only 9 pages long.

But it is the story of Princess Mary that is by far the most interesting. Set over a month, it chronicles the events of Pechorin's holiday at the Elizabeth Spring, a place where hopeful socialites mix with distinguished military men to secure strong marriages, or engage in clandestine affairs. A man Pechorin knows - not a friend, because, 'of two friends, one is always the slave of the other...I can never be a slave, and to command in these circumstances is too exacting', is in love with Mary, the daughter of a wealthy but socially poor Princess. For no reason other than it would amuse him, Pechorin sets out to make young Mary fall in love with, enjoying himself immensely while the spa descends into a chaotic, backstabbing pit of secret looks and pistol duels.

Through his journal, we come to know Pechorin. He is very casual in the way he writes, trailing off with thoughts he finds distasteful, commenting slyly on everyone, including himself, and willing to analyse everything and everybody. He is witty, cultured, and bored with is life. Toying with people amuses him, dispelling the ever-present melancholy of his life. Yet - and this is something that is initially difficult to believe, but thanks to Lermontov's skill as an author, works very well - Pechorin is not malicious, nor does he do what he does out of anger. He tends to work at people's emotions, playing them out more artfully than they would themselves. When events escalate, and he finds himself in a rigged duel, Pechorin is not contrite, but is willing to let it all go and have everyone go back to the spa, with all forgiven. When this request is denied, he doesn't mind very much, and if he is to die, what matter? 'After all, the worst you can do is die, and you've got to die sometime.', he comments.

Pechorin is not a sympathetic character, but he is not trying to be. Through Maxim's story, and the narrator's subsequent efforts to discover more about this interesting man, our curiosity is aroused. How could Pechorin be the way he is? What man would enjoy the suffering of others, but be equally amused by the lack of excitement? Why would anyone risk life and limb for a woman, then spurn her when she offers herself to him? The journals of Pechorin both answer and do not answer these questions. Pechorin is Pechorin. Self-consistent, and absolutely accountable to himself, he is assured, intelligent, and charismatic. To others, he is a mystery, but, as he muses, it may be because everyone is attracted to evil, and for him, it is more interesting than being good.
16 人中、16人の方が、「このレビューが参考になった」と投票しています。
Wicked Irony: An Anti-Hero for All Time 2003/12/12
投稿者 J C E Hitchcock - (
形式: ペーパーバック
This was Lermontov's only novel, published a year before his death in a duel at the age of 27. Although it was written in the late 1830s, it is strikingly modern both in its structure and in its treatment of the hero.
In structure, the book consists of a collection of short stories and novellas rather than a single narrative. These stories, however, are linked in two ways. Firstly, all feature the same protagonist, Grigoriy Pechorin, a young officer serving with the Russian army in the Caucasus. Secondly, they are bound together by a complex framework featuring a single anonymous narrator (not to be identified with Lermontov himself), a traveller in the Caucasus. The first story, Bela, is supposedly told to this narrator by Maksim Maksimych, a brother-officer of Pechorin. The second, Maksim Maksimych, is related by the narrator himself and deals with a meeting between Pechorin and Maksim. The other three, Taman, Princess Mary and The Fatalist, are all told in Pechorin's own words, taken from his journal which has come into the narrator's hands after Pechorin's death.
It is the fourth tale, Princess Mary, which is the longest and the one which lies at the heart of the work. Bela and Taman are adventure stories with an exotic setting (the Caucasus had the same sort of appeal for nineteenth-century Russians as India had for their British contemporaries). Maksim Maksimych is a linking narrative, and the final story, The Fatalist is an unsettling, spooky treatment of the concepts of fate and predestination.
In Princess Mary, the mood changes abruptly from the romantic exoticism of the earlier stories. Pechorin is stationed in a fashionable spa town in the northern Caucasus. Here he has little to occupy his time, and becomes embroiled in liaisons with two women, the Mary of the title (the daughter of an aristocratic family), and Vera, a former mistress of his, now unhappily married to an older husband. As a result of these intrigues, Pechorin quarrels with Grushnitsky, a rival for Mary's affections, and the story culminates in a duel between the two men.
The loose, episodic structure of the novel must have seemed very radical to readers in the first half of the nineteenth century. Lermontov also seems to prefigure later developments in the novel in his treatment of the character of Pechorin, a cynical, amoral figure who does not conform to the normal nineteenth idea of a literary "hero". This may make the title of the book seem ironic. Lermontov himself recognises this when he invents a dialogue between his narrator and his imaginary readers. The narrator says that the title of the book would be his reply should anyone ask him for his opinion of Pechorin's character. "But that is wicked irony!" Lermontov imagines his readers replying, to which the narrator's only comment is "I don't know.....". The suggestion is thereby given that the title can be taken both in an ironic sense and also at face value.
In a limited sense, Pechorin can indeed be seen as a heroic figure. A common usage of the word "hero" (possibly its original usage) is a person of great bravery, and there is no doubt that, in his duel with Grushnitsky, Pechorin shows both physical courage and indifference to death. What he lacks is the moral stature of the true hero in the unqualified sense of the word. We may admire someone who shows courage in order to help others, or in the service of his country, or in defence of a moral principle. Although this is difficult for us to understand today, people in the nineteenth century (or at least the upper classes from which Lermontov came) may also have admired someone who was prepared to risk death in defence of his honour or the honour of a loved one. What does not seem admirable, either from the perspective of the nineteenth century or from that of the twenty-first, is a contempt for death arising out of boredom with life, and it is this boredom which is the motivation for many of Pechorin's actions. His pursuit of Mary and Vera (like his earlier relationship with the Caucasian girl Bela) is born not of love or affection for the women involved, or even of sexual desire, but rather of a lack of anything better with which to occupy himself. He fights the duel with Grushnitsky not out of a belief that some things are worth dying for, but rather out of a belief that nothing is worth living for.
If Pechorin is not a conventional hero, neither is he a conventional literary villain in the sense of a brutal or Machiavellian evildoer, whose evil serves as a contrast to the virtue of the hero or heroine. Although there is something demonic about him in the way he brings misery to others, he is not wholly evil. A surprising side of his character brought out in his journals is his sensitivity to the beauty of nature; vivid descriptions of Caucasian scenery alternate with details of squalid intrigues. This is more than the stock Romantic cliché about wild characters being drawn to wild scenery; Lermontov uses these passages to suggest that even Pechorin sometimes aspires to a better way of life. After the literally breathtaking description of his duel with Grushnitsky, Pechorin concludes the story of Princess Mary with an unexpectedly poetic image, comparing himself to a mariner who has become so used to storm and strife that he cannot abide a peaceful life ashore and who paces the beach, watching for the sail that will take him back to sea.
Although there are similar characters in Romantic fiction, such as Pushkin's Onegin, the restless, cynical Pechorin can also be seen as prefiguring the "outsider" anti-heroes of the literature of the mid-twentieth century. (Camus's Meursault and Osborne's Jimmy Porter are examples that come to mind). More than a century and a half after his creation, Pechorin still seems a very modern figure; an anti-hero for our times as much as his own. I finished the book with only two regrets; firstly, that Lermontov's untimely death prevented him from writing any more novels, and secondly that there do not currently seem to be any English versions of his poetry in print.
62 人中、53人の方が、「このレビューが参考になった」と投票しています。
Nabokov edition? Hard (impossible) to tell. 2007/4/11
投稿者 Jason Joseph-Holmes - (
A note of caution to those considering purchasing the Hard Press edition of "A Hero in Our Time." I bought this edition based on the reviews that mentioned the edition as having been translated by Vlad & Dmitri Nabokov. So I was surprised when I received the Hard Press edition (soft cover, with grayish-green panels on the top and bottom, and grey and white panels in the center; no picture on the cover, only the text of the title/author). NOWHERE in the book does it state that it was translated by Nabokov; indeed, the book contains absolutely no translator info whatsoever, leaving the reader completely at sea in determining who translated it (despite Amazon's description that it contains a "Translator's Foreword"). Instead, the book appears more like a manuscript submitted for review, rather than a publication. There isn't even any Library of Congress or ISBN info anywhere in the book, nor is there a publication date (usually included on one of the opening pages). "Page 1" is completely blank (other than to say it is "Page 1"); "Page 2" consists of a table of contents, and page 3 launches straight into the author's text (despite page 2's table of contents indicating that the book starts with a "Foreward").
10 人中、10人の方が、「このレビューが参考になった」と投票しています。
Please, don't judge a book by its cover! 2006/2/1
投稿者 Matt - (
形式: ペーパーバック
Yes, I realize this edition has one of the stupidest looking covers I've ever seen, particularly for a Russian novel. However, this is one of my favorite. The story starts out with a man being told a variety of stories about a man named Pechorin, which is enjoyable enough, yet Pechorin is one of the most amazing, entertaining, and brilliant characters in literature. When the story moves into his tale is when the story really picks up. He does a series of things that are entertaining as any in literature. A combination of stealing a native princess, getting the family killed, and ultimately getting bored with her is only one element. Getting a Russian princess to fall in love with him just to spite a companion is another element. If you don't like darkly humored anti-heroes, this is not the book for you. Pechorin does numerous things just to entertain himself that cost others, and it may not be for everyone. But certain quotes such as "Suffering is the first experience that allows me to take joy in tormenting others" and "I choose to despise women over loving them because life would be too much of a melodrama otherwise." Plain and simple, Pechorin is fun. He brings up some interesting intellectual issues, but overall, the main attraction to this book is the character of Pechorin. Anyone who's in the mood for a fun, darkly humored read needs to read this book. If that is not your taste, leave it on the bookshelf. Either way, I grew to love Pechorin and see him as the sly, mean-spirited side of me that rarely seems to surface.
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