Energy of Delusion: A Book on Plot (Russian Literature) (Paperback)
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One of the greatest literary minds of the twentieth century, Viktor Shklovsky writes the critical equivalent of what Ross Chambers calls "loiterature"--writing that roams, playfully digresses, moving freely between the literary work and the world. In Energy of Delusion, a masterpiece that Shklovsky worked on over thirty years, he turns his unique critical sensibility to Tolstoy's life and novels, applying the famous "formalist method" he invented in the 1920s to Tolstoy's massive body of work, and at the same time taking Tolstoy (as well as Boccaccio, Pushkin, Chekhov, Dostoevsky, and Turgenev) as a springboard to consider the devices of literature--how novels work and what they do. Available in English for the first time, Energy of Delusion provides contemporary readers with a new way of thinking about how great literature is written (and how great criticism might be) that is as timely today as ever.