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Degeneration, decadence and disease in the Russian fin de siècleNeurasthenia in the life and work of Leonid Andreev$
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Frederick H. White

Print publication date: 2014

Print ISBN-13: 9780719091643

Published to Manchester Scholarship Online: January 2015

DOI: 10.7228/manchester/9780719091643.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM MANCHESTER SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (www.manchester.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright Manchester University Press, 2019. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in MSO for personal use.date: 21 October 2019

Diaries and death

Diaries and death

(p.230) 7 Diaries and death
Degeneration, decadence and disease in the Russian fin de siècle

Frederick H. White

Manchester University Press

For most of 1912-13, Andreev suffered from constant migraines, insomnia and a pain in his arm. Finally in 1914, he decided to go to Rome with his wife Anna and their son Savva to convalesce. The final act of Andreev’s life was one of failing health and diminished artistic abilities. These problems were complicated further by war and revolution, which monopolized a great amount of Andreev’s attention. This chapter concentrates on the author’s Finnish diary, where the illness experience is once again at the fore, as well as Andreev’s own pursuit of treatment. As noted at the beginning of this study, if we examine Andreev’s narrative of illness from adolescent diary, through his literary works, to his final Finnish entries, we gain perspective on how neurasthenia influenced the author’s life and works.

Keywords:   Leonid Andreev, Degeneration, Decadence, Russian literature, Russian fin de siècle, Illness narrative, Madness

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