Diaboliad and Other Stories
Translated by Hugh Aplin
In Bulgakov’s ‘Diaboliad’, the modest and unassuming office clerk Korotkov is summarily sacked for a trifling error from his job at the Main Central Depot of Match Materials and tries to seek out his newly assigned superior, responsible for his dismissal. His quest through the labyrinth of Soviet bureaucracy takes on the increasingly surreal dimensions of a nightmare.
This early satirical story, reminiscent of Gogol and Dostoevsky, was first published in 1924 and incurred the wrath of pro-Soviet critics. Along with the three other stories in this volume, which also explore the themes of the absurd and bizarre, it provides a fascinating glimpse into the artistic development of the author of The Master and Margarita.
Contains ‘Diaboliad’, ‘No.13 – The Elpit Workers’ Commune Building’, ‘A Chinese Tale’, ‘The Adventures of Chichikov’.
Bulgakov is a wild, mobile, crafty devotee of ideas.
One of the great writers of the twentieth century.
A writer of fantastic genius.
The Sunday Times
One of the greatest modern Russian writers, perhaps the greatest.
Born in Kiev in 1891 to Russian parents, Mikhail Bulgakov trained as a doctor and volunteered for the Red Cross on the outbreak of the First World War. He later enlisted as a doctor for the anti-Bolshevik White Army, before eventually giving up medicine to concentrate on literature. The Master and Margarita is his most famous work, and has been hailed as one of the greatest novels of the twentieth century.