Staunton, January 19 – If Russians are going to go in for book burning, the editors of “Maxim” say, there are some books they as Putin loyalists should consider setting fire to first. In the current issue of the magazine, they offer a list of ten which either because of their subjects or their authors make them appropriate targets.
Herewith the Moscow magazine’s list, compiled by its regular author, Oleg ‘Orange’ Bocharov, that will allow his readers to catch up with the latest fashion in Putin’s Russia today (maximonline.ru/humor/made-in-maxim/_article/burning-books/):
1. Nikolay Gogol’s “Dead Souls.” A harmful book written by “a psychologically unhealthy” person from Ukraine. “In every Russian fire, there should be something Ukrainian!”
2. Astrid Lindgren’s “Carlson on the Roof.” A candidate for burning because it tells of the unnatural interest of a pedophile in a child of the same sex. Still worse, its author is “an activist of the [Swedish] social-democratic party” and that can’t be good.
3. Leo Tolstoy’s “War and Peace.” It isn’t important what this huge book is about. Its size alone will help the fire burn brightly. Moreover, its author was “an aging hippy” who was alienated from the Church.
4. Mikhail Bulgakov’s “The Master and Margarita.” A satanist distortion of Jesus’s life written by a drug addict and native of Kyiv.
5. George Orwell’s “1984.” Not only does this book reflect a lack of understanding of “that key role which its wise power plays in the life of the individual … it contains a false interpretation of the tested and reliable methods of popular enlightenment.” And in addition, it “was written in London by the son of an opium producer.”
6. J.R.R. Tolkien’s “Lord of the Rings.” “A cheap and long-winded invention in which the place of gays and emgires in Europe are occupied by gnomes and elves, and the entire territory of Russia is covered by volcanoes and its population by Urks. The author is a commander of the Order of the British Empire and this says it all.”
7. Arthur Conan Doyle’s “The Hound of the Baskervilles.” This story, written by “a British spiritualist and charlatan,” not only promotes murder but “awakens hatred to a social group,” in this case, “dogs.”
8. Mikhail Lermontov’s “Hero of Our Times.” A book intended to spark international tension between Russians and persons of Caucasus nationality, written by an adventurist whose death Nicholas I cleverly predicted: ‘to a dog, a dog’s death.’”
9. Vladimir Sorokin’s “The Norm.” A novel that “propagandizes a negative attitude toward the honored by every Russian practice of eating sh.t,” whose author earlier refused to join the Komsomol.
10. Korney Chukovsky’s “Fly Tsokotukha.” The author grew up in Odessa and associated with Soviet dissidents so one can expect nothing more than a tale of immorality directed at children.