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Hemingway, Ernest

For Whom the Bell Tolls. Unique typescript of the earlier version of the translation.

For Whom the Bell Tolls. Unique typescript of the earlier version of the translation.

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American literature / Boston Book Fair 2023 / Samizdat / Translations
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Hemingway, Ernest [For Whom the Bell Tolls]. Po Kom Zvonit Kolokol. Chapter 1-18. Carbon typescript. 

Translation by M. Volzhina and E. Kalashnikova. 

N.p., early 1960s.
4to, [1], 214 leaves (recto only).

In contemporary blue cloth.
In good condition, light wear to cover, small stains to back cover, corners and sides a little frayed and bumped, stains to some pages, with manuscript additions or emendations.

First or second copy. Unique typescript of the earlier version of the translation.

The extracts from the novel "For Whom the Bell Tolls", translated into Russian, were scheduled to be published in "Znamya" magazine in 1941. However, the outbreak of war in June of that year disrupted these plans. Simultaneously, Hemingway faced criticism for the novel and was accused of slander by the Spanish communists. It is believed that Josef Stalin personally read the complete translation of the novel and commented, "Interesting. Printing is forbidden".
This original, draft, and pre-proofreading typescript, encompassing the first 18 chapters (with the last chapter lacking an ending), served as the basis for the two-volume edition published in 1962 (without any censorship cuts). This edition was specifically intended for Soviet authorities as part of a special series, marking the first Russian translation of the novel.
The series of such books was not intended for distribution through bookstores or libraries. These books, primarily translations, were exclusively sent out based on a special list, with the expectation that each copy would be returned after reading.
In this series, the edition of "For Whom the Bell Tolls" was released without any information about the translator. However, this typescript (the earlier version of that translation) provides the confirmation that the translation was prepared by two prominent female translators, Evgeniia Kalashnikova (1906-1976) and Nataliia Volzhina (1903-1981), albeit with a misprint on the title page as M. Volzhina.
This typescript is more than just a samizdat (underground press) copy. This being the first version of the translation is further confirmed when comparing it to Hemingway's original text, to first and second Russian editions of the translation.
Hemingway became a victim of postwar xenophobia and was only rediscovered by Soviet readers in the mid-1960s and early 1970s. "For Whom the Bell Tolls" was finally published in 1968 as the third volume of Hemingway's "Collected Works" with certain censorship cuts. It was the third version of this translation. The complete, uncensored version of the translation was not available until 2015.

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