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download Audible Damskij DekameronAuthor Julia Voznesenskaya –

The format is what attracted me to this but, despite a great premise, the format is what ended up letting it down It is based on Boccaccio s Decameron 1353 10 women tell a story each on 10 consecutive days on a series of topics such as love, rape, revenge and bitches Here, the women are confined to a maternity ward after giving birth So much potential Unfortunately, there is not enough differentiation between the voices and the women s characters are not memorable They are often reduced to a job description and a childhood trauma I think we are supposed to see them as slowly building community and sisterhood through their shared experiences and yet, they continuously reinforce the norms and stereotypes of the patriarchal society outside such as when Galina, without asking Zina for permission, tells the father of her child where to find her When Zina finds out, by receiving an unsolicited parcel from him, it s as if she feels like she is supposed to be happy now, as the other women keep telling her I m not convinced I hoped this would go a lot further, possibly even into the surreal, but it never progressed far enough and felt very repetitive. Like Boccacio S Famous Florentines, Julia Voznesenskaya S Russian Women Are Cunning And Savvy About All Facets Of The Soviet System They Know How To Beat It And How To Endure Quarantined In A Leningrad Maternity Ward After Giving Birth, Ten Women From All Walks Of Soviet Life Amuse Themselves By Telling Stories Stories That Provide An Astonishingly Intimate And Dramatic Insight Into The Lives Of Russia TodayThe Women Recount One Hundred Stories One Story Told Each Day By Each Of The Ten Women For Ten Days On Such Themes As Love, Jealousy, Infidelity, Seduction, Farcical Sex, Money, Revenge, And Finally, Happiness Beneath Their Gossip Runs The Stark Reality Of A Society Torn Apart By Suicide, Divorce, And Alcoholism By The Difficulties Of Finding Food And A Place To Live By The Threat Of Harrowing Imprisonment Voznesenskaya Writes Vividly About Everyday Soviet Life As Well As Politics, And Her Revealing Book Conveys A Passionate Belief In The Spiritual Strength Of The Russian Woman, To Which Readers Everywhere Will Respond With Sympathy And Shocks Of Recognition I read this book when I was barely out of my teens, and I knew pretty close to nothing at all about life in the USSR Well, did I get a education It was the first novel I ever read that so vividly brought to life a foreign culture for me I was amazed by the author s ability to paint such a detailed, complex and comprehensive picture of a world that was very real for many people in such a few simple scenes and stories I had no idea so much of a world could be conveyed in so few pages of fiction I was newly fascinated with the power of literature to provide education and knowledge about the world This book was a great influence in what kind of literature I chose to focus on in my reading life. image error I really had trouble getting into this book It s a reinvention of Boccacio s Decameron set in a quarantined maternity ward in the U.S.S.R in the 1980 s To be fair, I never read the original Decameron, I just know of the general set up concept of it, so maybe I m missing something vital, but I just felt like this version was a nice idea, but crappily realized The conversations between the women in the passages in between each of the women s stories I found dry and contrived At the beginning of every story there is a summary of the story in brackets, which I found completely unnecessary and in some cases it actually ruined the story for me particularly when the stories were short sometimes the summary was longer than the story.I should also admit that I didn t finish it I read about thirty pages in, realized it was allof the same and the plot didn t seem to deepen or thicken at all, leafed through it some , and gave up Maybe I ll try again some day.I think I will try to read the original Decameron for comparison s sake. This book, inspired by the classic The Decameron by Boccaccio, is set in modern day Russia 1980 s Ten Russian women, including a shipyard worker, an engineer, a music teacher and others, are quarantined for 10 days in a Leningrad clinic after giving birth For 10 days they each take turns telling a story from their life experiences The book provides an interesting glimpse at how women were treated in Soviet Russia and how they survived It s funny at times but also witty and sad. A solid four A hint of repetition by the end was the only factor which kept the book from being a five By the end, you pretty much knew what sort of story each women would share and there were really no surprises My favorites were Zina and Nelya, who I felt was overlooked at times She was so quiet and understated, yet her stories were powerfully poignant And I loved Irishka s closing story Summed up the whole of the book quite nicely. 2.5 5Threats do not concern us If he kills you, come and tell usI don t quite know what to make of this work On the one hand, it certainly fulfills the goal it set out for itself, ten stories each day for ten days covering a broad spectrum of women s lives in Soviet Russia On the other hand, I very rarely got the feeling that the whole was building into a work greater than the sum of its parts, and far too often I had a hard time remaining interested Contributors to this negative reception are likely my lack of familiarity with the Decameron save through the hearsay of The Canterbury Tales and other fanfictions, as well as my general distinterest in short stories and endless soap opera style lists of names Exceptions to both of these can be seen in the forms of The Complete Stories and My Brilliant Friend, respectively, so I can t say I m not completely unequipped when it comes to this satirical work I may just be worn down by The Journey to the West to the point that I crave a cohesive narrative with a slow meandering rise and a slow meandering fall, so that if I m disappointed with a less than novel narratological choice it only happens once other than tens after tens of times Ah well Such are the inadvertent mistakes one makes in choice of reading Have you ever heard her putting in a single word for women Of course not, and that s why she s head of the Committee of Soviet Women. I don t think a single one of these stories passed the Bechdel test, which is rather pathetic considering how we re dealing with women from every strata of Russian society Someone may prove me wrong, and I m not exactly a big fan of Bechdel these days her signing off on a horribly transphobic book makes it hard to deal , but when I read that a book called The Women s Decameron is human , I expect actual acknowledgment of that humanity without the involvement or the evaluation by men Not every story was as horrific and borderline exploitative as the ones involving revenge for rape that involved further objectification of an innocent woman by an odious cuntfucker, but there wasn t as much critical reception as I would ve liked, and the fact that there are indeed instances of it meant that there could ve beenThe historical fleshing out of life in Soviet Russia was welcome, but that also seemed to hit a wall after a certain point, like video games that have coded for a certain area only and prevent the player from going further with infinitely high mountains or literal zones of no life permitted As such, as a string of stories this did not engage, as a record of history this barely informed, and as a satire it didn t critique enough, leaving me wishing that this work had been as striking as it certainly had the potential to be I ll have to pick up something a bit stronger next time that perhaps doesn t aim so high Go big or go home, but it s a slog getting through the failed attemptsT wo poetesses, Yuliya and NataliyaYuliya and Natalya got marriedMy challenge book pile for 2018 is reaching its final stage, and while it certainly has been motivating and beneficial for both my reading rates and my book clean up levels, I ll be glad to not have the same dwindling stack staring me in the face every time I m choosing a new work Exceptions such as JttW and my own reading women of color prerogative have broken up the monotony a tad, but when one hasthan 400 works at one s physical disposal, it s hard to return to the same 20 or so books for future engagement School, however, is approaching, and I may look back at the relatively gargantuan amounts of free time I once had and reminisce about being able to actually fulfill a yearlong plan with several months to spare We shall see, though I can t be prevented from reading for longSo, do you think your Jesus Christ was a dissident, too Using modern jargon yes, of course he was Ten women in a soviet hospital are placed under quarantine so to pass the ten days they start telling each other stories on a pre agreed subject, such as love, hate, revenge, good deeds, rape etc The hundred stories portray the country and its people quite well The book was released in 1986, translated into English and released over here a year later I do understand why it was accepted so well It s like sneaking in a look behind the iron curtain and watching people cooking food or having sex Awkward but addictive.For me a citizen of an ex USSR republic quite a few stories and details hit close to home I ve heard a lot of similar or different stories about similar subjects quite a lot while growing up Holidays in dachas, socialising with a bottle of vodka, queueing up for oranges at the shops because of food rationing, hard conditions and censorship I m aware of it all And I wonder how a person without prior knowledge would find this book I, quite frankly, found it repetitive, with a too simplistic structure of sentences Any story in there could be made into a longer short story, longer than just a page long Or the same stories could just be written better A must read for anyone tending to ask questions of What was it like Here s your answer s.