The Heart of a Dog

In June, when Black Lives Matter riots erupted in American cities, conservatives began rereading Tom Wolfe for insides on race relations. I, too, dusted off my copy of Radical Chic and Mau-Mauing the Flak Catchers. But once BLM and Antifa moved on to toppling monuments, I wanted a different kind of wisdom, something that dissects not the hypocrisy and venality of the “social justice” mindset, but the phenomenal stupidity of revolutionary consciousness. So I reached for one of the most extraordinary works of Soviet-period Russian literature, Mikhail Bulgakov’s Heart of a Dog.

Bulgakov was born in 1891 in Kiev, son of a theology professor, and a grandson of two Orthodox clergymen. He graduated from a medical faculty, quickly embarking on a successful career as a doctor. He started writing during the civil war that followed the 1917 Bolshevik Revolution, and soon left the medical profession entirely.

Despite the frankly reactionary themes of his work, Bolshevik censors permitted publication of some of the writer’s books and production of his plays. Throughout the 1920s in particular his plays were the major draw of the Moscow Art Theater, practically keeping it alive. It took authorities another decade to raise a generation of socialist writers, and in the meantime they had to settle for the likes of Bulgakov.

Skewering the Revolutionary Consciousness by Katya Sedgwick

Interesting, that even when Lenin and Stalin was alive, a few reactionaries were permitted to continue breathing.

Sure, the book review sounds great: but really, I just like the book’s title. A perfect fit for our deeply sentimental Betters, and their profound concern for the Lower Classes.

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