Mikhail bulgakov. the master and margarita (1997)

Mikhail Bulgakov. The Master and Margarita (1997)

Contents

Introduction
A Note on the Text and Acknowledgements

BOOK ONE
Never Talk with Strangers
Pontius Pilate
The Seventh Proof
The Chase
There were Doings at Griboedov’s
Schizophrenia, as was Said
A Naughty Apartment
The Combat between the Professor and the Poet
Koroviev’s Stunts
News From Yalta
Ivan Splits in Two
Black Magic and Its Exposure
The Hero Enters
Glory to the Cock!
Nikanor Ivanovich’s Dream
The Execution
An Unquiet Day
Hapless Visitors

BOOK TWO
Margarita
Azazello’s Cream
Flight
By Candlelight
The Great Ball at Satan’s
The Extraction of the Master
How the Procurator Tried to Save Judas of Kiriath
The Burial
The End of Apartment No.50
The Last Adventures of Koroviev and Behemoth
The Fate

of the Master and Margarita is Decided
It’s Time! It’s Time!
On Sparrow Hills
Forgiveness and Eternal Refuge
Epilogue
Notes

Introduction

Mikhail Bulgakov worked on this luminous book throughout one of the
Darkest decades of the century. His last revisions were dictated to his wife
A few weeks before his death in 1940 at the age of forty-nine. For him,
There was never any question of publishing the novel. The mere existence of
The manuscript, had it come to the knowledge of Stalin’s police, would
Almost certainly have led to the permanent disappearance of its author. Yet
The book was of great importance to him, and he clearly believed that a time
Would come when it could be published. Another twenty-six years had to pass
Before events bore out that belief and The Master and Margarita, by what
Seems a surprising oversight in Soviet literary politics, finally appeared
In print. The effect was electrifying.
The monthly magazine Moskva, otherwise a rather cautious and quiet
Publication, carried the first part of The Master and Margarita in its
November 1966 issue. The 150,000 copies sold out within hours. In the weeks
That followed, group readings were held, people meeting each other would
Quote and compare favourite passages, there was talk of little else. Certain
Sentences from the novel immediately became proverbial. The very language of
The novel was a contradiction of everything wooden, official, imposed. It
Was a joy to speak.
When the second part appeared in the January 1967 issue of Moskva, it
Was greeted with the same enthusiasm. Yet this was not the excitement caused
By the emergence of a new writer, as when Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn’s One Day
In the Life of Ivan Denisovich appeared in the magazine Novy Mir in 1962.
Bulgakov was neither unknown nor forgotten. His plays had begun to be
Revived in theatres during the late fifties and were published in 1962. His
Superb Life of Monsieur de Moliere came out in that same year. His early
Stories were reprinted. Then, in 1965, came the Theatrical Novel, based on
His years of experience with Stanislavsky’s renowned Moscow Art Theatre. And
Finally in 1966 a volume of Selected Prose was published, containing the
Complete text of Bulgakov’s first novel. The White Guard, written in the
Twenties and dealing with nearly contemporary events of the Russian civil
War in his native Kiev and the Ukraine, a book which in its clear-sighted
Portrayal of human courage and weakness ranks among the truest depictions of
War in all of literature.



Mikhail bulgakov. the master and margarita (1997)