TEHRAN – Vadim Vladimirovich Polonsky, the director of the Maxim Gorky Literature Institute of the Russian Academy of Sciences, has said that Russian writer Anton Chekhov is one of the bestselling foreign authors in Iran.
He made the remarks in a message submitted to “One Week with Chekhov”, an online program organized by Iran’s Book City Institute in collaboration with Russia’s Russkiy Mir Foundation to celebrate the 160th birthday anniversary of Anton Chekhov.
He said that the institute warmly welcomes the cultural programs arranged for the weeklong webinar.
He called Chekhov one of the bestselling foreign authors in Iran. Over two million copies of his books have been sold over the past century and his plays have been staged across the country.
He said that Chekhov’s popularity lies in the inseparable unity observed in his works.
He said that in Chekhov’s works spirituality and materiality, life and immortality are not separated from one another and that they are all placed next to one another in an inseparable unity.
Polonsky said that Chekhov recreates life in its high perfection and that is why his books are quite understandable for readers from different cultures and in different eras.
He also hoped that cultural cooperation between Iran and Russia would continue and increase in the future.
A number of Iranian and Russian experts on Chekhov are attending the webinar which opened on June 21.
Articles as well as the audio and video files are being presented on the webinar.
According to the Book City Institute deputy director Ali-Asghar Mohammadkhani, Chekhov created a new style in story writing and playwriting.
“His letters also enjoy a high value. His works were praised by his fellow writers Leo Tolstoy and Maxim Gorky. He is considered one of the most significant authors of Russia and has resurrected the daily life of people of his time in his books,” he said.
He added that Iranian writers and playwrights such as Mohammad-Ali Jamalzadeh, Sadeq Hedayat, Simin Daneshvar, Hushang Golshiri and Akbar Raadi have also been inspired by Chekhov’s books.
Chekhov (1860-1904) is a Russian playwright and master of the modern short story. His best plays and short stories lack complex plots and neat solutions.
“The Seagull”, “The Cherry Orchard”, “The Duel”, “The Bear”, “Uncle Vanya” and “The Three Sisters” are among his noteworthy credits.
Photo: A portrait of Russian writer Anton Chekhov.