Margarita and The Master

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(Perhaps we would consider the story very differently if Margarita was mentioned first?)

Well, as per usual, this blog post is going to be some semblance of literary analysis formatted as a stream of consciousness ramble. What can I say? I don’t think in a linear way…

The thing that struck me first about this novel is the concept of atheism and the way it is portrayed then versus how it is viewed now. This novel was written during a time of massive change and I assume that someone being openly atheist was a bit of a phenomenon. What’s changed? How has it changed? Why has it changed?

The story within a story theme is something that I find really interesting and quite intriguing – lots of authors (both modern and less modern) have used the story within a story theme. For example, Shakespeare uses it a lot in plays like A Midsummer Night’s Dream and Hamlet. Marlowe used a version of it in Doctor Faustus. Lots of books and even movies today have story or dream sequences used to advance the plot and give the reader additional information.

Things that this reminded me of: Doctor Zhivago. SO. MUCH. And I didn’t really enjoy Zhivago that much – it was a bit of a dry, forced read – but now that I’m reading this I realize the similarities. It was really great that Miranda mentioned Zhivago in lecture today – because the two works are definitely comparable. They were written in similar time periods of political unrest and lots of change, and both Pasternak and Bulgakov knew how to take a dire and/or unusual political situation and create a story around it.

That’s all for tonight! See you all in seminar Wednesday 🙂