Gogol's stories are admired for their skillful mingling of fantasy and reality, quiet good humor and use of mundane details -- as Gogol put it -- to extract the extraordinary from the ordinary. Imaginative and timeless, they remain as fresh and significant today as they were to readers generations ago. This rich selection of four short stories by the great 19th-century Russian author of Dead Souls includes The Nose, a savage satire of incompetent bureaucrats and the snobbery and complacency of the Russian upper classes; Old-Fashioned Farmers, a sketch depicting an elderly couple who live a happy but simple life in rustic seclusion; The Tale of How Ivan Ivanovich Quarrelled with Ivan Nikiforovich, and of Gogol's most famous comic stories; and The Overcoat, an exceptionally moving tale -- considered a masterpiece of the form -- about a poor and much-ridiculed St. Petersburg official. Includes a selection from the Common Core State Standards Initiative: The Nose.
Nikolai Gogol (1809-1852) won fame as a short story writer, and in 1836, his satirical comedy The Government Inspector created such a furore that Gogol left Russia to settle in Rome, in self-imposed exile. Religious mania in his later years contributed to his early death in Moscow.