The Restless Classics edition of Chekhov: Stories for Our Time presents a must-have collection by the great Russian author who captured humanity in all its complexity, and reintroduces Chekhov as a playful, deeply human, and thoroughly modern writer.
The great 19th-century Russian author and playwright Anton Chekhov wrote nearly one thousand stories, a body of work that is unmatched in its alchemy of sensitivity, wisdom, precision, and verve. Chekhov’s sensibility was radically human and thoroughly modern: write not how you think things should be, but rather as they are. Universally recognized as one of the greatest short story writers of all time, he revolutionized the form and had a profound influence on his successors, from Flannery O’Connor to Alice Munro.
As the celebrated Russian-immigrant author Boris Fishman writes in his delightfully counterintuitive introduction to this Restless Classics collection, Chekhov is funny, ceaselessly curious, and undogmatic—a significant break from the bleak and morally rigid tradition of his contemporaries Dostoevsky and Tolstoy. Unlike those peers born to privilege, Chekhov was raised in the peasantry and worked as a doctor. In his writing, he portrays the complexity of human beings as changeable and contingent, neither saints nor sinners—an approach intimately linked with his work as a clinician and humanitarian.
Chekhov’s humanity, just as much as his mastery of the writing craft, is potent medicine in times that seem so divided by ideology and antipathy for groups seen as “other.” The first new selection of his work in over a decade, the Restless Classics edition of Chekhov: Stories for Our Time pairs beloved favorites with lesser known gems, all stunningly illustrated by Matt McCann: a perfect introduction for novices and a must-have for Chekhov devotees.