Stories of a Life

Stories of a Life

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Originally written as a series of viral Facebook posts, then released as a cult hit in St. Petersburg, Meshchaninova's serialized memoir-novel tackles gender politics and abuse with honest, cutting language. Stories of A Life depicts the life of Natasha, a young woman who suffers abuse first at the hands of her stepfather Sasha and then by young men in the village nearby. This powerful, postmodern novel witnesses the Dickensian struggles of provincial life and reckons with the complicity of fellow women. Starkly down-to-earth yet funny and informal, Stories of A Life demands that we bear witness to the bleakness of a young womanhood in post-Soviet Russia. Meshchaninova is held in high regard as part of a new wave of women filmmakers in Russia, and with this collection cements her position as a woman willing to stare down the viewer and demand complicity.



Author: Nataliya Meshchaninova
Publisher: Deep Vellum Publishing
Published: 02/01/2022
Pages: 184
Binding Type: Paperback
Weight: 0.35lbs
Size: 6.90h x 4.20w x 0.50d
ISBN: 9781646051151

Review Citation(s):
Publishers Weekly 12/06/2021

About the Author

Nataliya Meshchaninova is a cinematographer in Russia who made her directorial debut in 2014. In 2017, she broke onto the literary scene with the viral hit Stories of A Life, which became a pillar of the #metoo movement in Russia.

Fiona Bell is a literary translator and scholar of Russian literature who is committed to sharing the voices of contemporary female and nonbinary Russian writers with anglophone audiences. After earning her B.A. in Slavic Languages and Literatures at Princeton University, Bell completed an M.S t. degree in Russian at Oxford University. In 2018-2019, she was mentored by Marian Schwartz through the ALTA Emerging Translator Mentorship Program. In 2019-2020, she received a Fulbright grant to teach university-level English in Ulyanovsk, Russia. Her translation of Stories of a Life by Nataliya Meshchaninova received a 2020 PEN/Heim Translation Fund grant. Bell's essays have appeared in Full Stop, The Los Angeles Review of Books, and elsewhere. She is from St. Petersburg, Florida, but currently lives in New Haven, Connecticut while earning a Ph.D. in Slavic Languages and Literature at Yale University.