Anton Chekhov


‘Love’ begins with the narrator writing a long, poetic and lovelorn letter to the object of his affections, Sasha. It has to be absolutely perfect. However, her reply isn’t exactly what he expected. This superbly-observed short story serves as an allegory to the trials and tribulations faced by those falling in love. Wistful, whimsical, and funny, it’s an essential read for those who want to find out more about the man behind classic plays, such as ‘The Seagull.’
Anton Pavlovich Chekhov (1860 — 1904) was born in Taganrog, in Southern Russia. The son of a grocer, and the third of six children, he was educated at the local Greek School. After Chekhov’s father became bankrupt, the family lived in poverty, before fleeing to Moscow to avoid debtor’s prison. However, a man called Selivanov paid the debts, for the price of the familial home and Chekhov was able to complete his education, funding himself through working as a tutor and selling short stories to the local newspaper.
After writing a series of tales for various publications, Chekhov started to gain critical attention. However, it was a trip to the Ukraine that put the literary wheels in motion. After the publication of his novella, ‘The Steppe,’ he was commissioned to write a play, resulting in ‘Ivanov.’
Over the course of his career, Chekhov wrote more than 200 short stories, and 14 plays. Works, such as ‘The Seagull,’ ‘The Cherry Orchard,’ and ‘Uncle Vanya,’ have been performed on stages across the world.
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