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Chekhov Stories Get the Cartoon Treatment

12. October 2012 by Lorena 0 Comments

About Love, a trilogy of stories by Russian writer Anton Chekhov is getting a new visual treatment. A Canadian cartoonist who goes solely by “Seth” created an illustrated English translation of the story that was released October 9.

 

About Love includes three related stories -- the eponymous About Love, Gooseberries and A Man in a Shell -- encapsulated in a frame story in which friends exchange stories about missed chances in their love lives. Like most Chekhov tales, the stories are about the poignant details of the lives of ordinary people. About Love was originally published in 1898, not long before health issues put an end to Chekhov's career. It was Chekhov's sole stab at interlinking stories.

 

Chekhov is credited with strongly influencing the short story form as it exists today. Seth, who is a Chekhov fan, said that he feels cartooning is an ideal medium for relating everyday life. He said that he felt the action of About Love moved in the same way a comic book would, which made it a natural choice for his style of illustration. He says that his images do not replace the text of the story in any way, and are more decorative than illustrative. 

 

Chekhov himself was no stranger to complex romantic entanglements. He was married to Russian actress Olga Knipper, but, insisted that the live in separate cities; she lived in Moscow while he lived in the country. There, he engaged in a number of sticky affairs, including one with the wife of a school teacher.

 

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