AMERICAN AUTHORS IN SOVIET LATVIA OF THE 1950S: THE CASE OF ERNEST HEMINGWAY
Published: 29 Sep 2021
Abstract: During the years of Soviet occupation (1940-1941; 1944/45-1991) all spheres of human activity in Latvia, literature including, were under ideological pressure. Foreign authors as representatives of the opposite social system were exposed to strict Soviet censorship. On the one hand, translated literature was subjected to less changes from ‘the red pencil of censorship’ than the original (written in Latvian); on the other hand, one of the main functions of multi-level Soviet censorship was the sanctioning: the selection of authors and works. To be allowed for translation into Latvian, first the literary work had to appear in Russian. The author of the accepted work had to be among ‘the friends’ of the Soviets or, at least, to sympathize with the socialist course. The present paper focuses on the phenomenon of Ernest Hemingway who enters the cultural space of Soviet Latvia surprisingly late and, one can state, suddenly; only in the second half of the 1950s two of his works are translated into Latvian and published in a book edition: his novel “A Farewell to Arms” and his short novel “The Old Man and the Sea” (both are published in 1958). The study examines the ways how Soviet ideologists started to create the image of the writer when introducing and even imposing Hemingway on the Latvian public. All stages of the writer’s reception process were thoroughly controlled, his life and creative work - verified and ‘polished’ hence presenting an enhanced version of the writer’s biography and creative activity characterized by ideologically biased interpretation. Soviet Latvia periodicals of the 1940s and 1950s were used as a data-collecting instrument.
Keywords: ernest hemingway, soviet latvia, translation, ideology, press, reception
Cite this article: Evita Badina. AMERICAN AUTHORS IN SOVIET LATVIA OF THE 1950S: THE CASE OF ERNEST HEMINGWAY. Journal of International Scientific Publications: Language, Individual & Society 15, 125-135 (2021). https://www.scientific-publications.net/en/article/1002276/
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