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4.4 of 5 stars 4.40  ·  rating details  ·  682 ratings  ·  35 reviews
“With remarkable precision and fluid language, the stories capture everyday tension in a land where an innocent knock on the door might mean entrapment in a bureaucratic maze or even death at the hands of the military.”—The New York Times Book Review

This collection of stories is composed of short miniatures, many of which the author called “incidents.” The quirky, bold wri
Paperback, 240 pages
Published January 1st 2007 by Five Star (first published January 1st 1989)
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Best Russian Literature
254th out of 376 books — 1,488 voters
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Best Russian (Soviet 1917-1991) Literature
105th out of 168 books — 162 voters

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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 1,129)
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Ben Winch
I didn’t get this at first. The cover’s ugly, the edition nasty, and in the introduction someone called Simon McBurney writes about hearing Tom Waits on the radio while stuck in a traffic jam near Vine Avenue in L.A.. (Heartattack and Vine’s a favourite of mine too, friend, but some decorum, please!) Anyhow, eventually the penny dropped. Turns out Mr McBurney had some good advice after all: read it to children. And one day when my hyperactive eight-year old stepson wouldn’t sit still I tried it. ...more
Stupidly, I googled Daniil Kharms just before settling in to write my review, and I stumbled upon George Saunders' NYT review of another Kharms book, in which Saunders somehow plagiarized all my ideas in advance, before recasting them in a much wittier form than I could ever hope to achieve. All of which I consider EXTREMELY DISCOURTEOUS.

The Absurdist movement in 1920's Leningrad reminds me of the doomed 'Visceral Realists' in The Savage Detectives, excep
i read it and nearly fell of the bench laughing. then i was reading it to my friends on the subway and nearly fell of my seat laughing. then they were reading it to each other and nearly fell off their seats as well.

then we went home and that was all there was to it.
Rajoja rikkovaa sillä tavalla, joka melkein särkee päätä, koska missään ei ole mitään järkeä eikä mitään voi ymmärtää.
An incredible book of ultra-short stories, dramatic fragments and weird non-fiction pieces... I grabbed this volume off the library shelf on impulse and I'm glad I did. It has turned out to be one of the most intriguing reads of the year so far...

This is pure Absurdism without any mitigating factors, individual prose fragments that make no sense on their own but when are regarded together with others of their kind seem to make a certain sense. Or rather, they echo and amplify each other (and som
Tobias Kask
Incidences is a selection of works by mr. Kharms; a collection of short stories, essays and plays written in Soviet Russia during the 1930s. It is my first glimpse of "critically acclaimed" literary absurdism; a form of humor that I've always enjoyed but never been able to categorize. I'm still not sure if i can.

I've read some essays by Kharms before (which ultimately lead to me buying this book), and i I find myself myself going \(O_o)/ all the freaking time. The thing is, though, i enjoy going
Madison Lynn
A predecessor to what we now deem "absurdism" and the most innovative reject of Russian Futurism, Daniil Kharms' writing is one of the most incisive literature in the past century. His short form prose takes brilliant steps to deconstruct fiction - one could spend an endless amount of time reading a single one of his "incidences" and continue to find new interpretations.

The only thing keeping me from giving this book a 5/5 rating is the translation - Saunders' adaptations are adequate but fall
Oddly hilarious, and hilariously odd, this collection of sundry writings by Kharms disturbs and charms. The so-called 'Incidents' make up much of the book, and are like literary candy - small stories that range from the mundane to the violent. Kharms experimented with micro forms way before the Internet age, but this style coincides with our trend towards bite-size chunks of information (I was reminded, in a way, of Jennifer Egan's Twitter-enabled short story for The New Yorker).

The use of drea
Erma Odrach
A book of short vignettes (often only a few paragraphs) by Russian surrealist/absurdist writer Daniil Kharms (1905-1942). They are witty, violent, sad, petty, clever, funny, and more. In one, Pushkin trips over Gogol, then Gogol trips over Pushkin and so on and so on; in another, old women plummet out the window, one after the other, and die; in yet another, Comrade Mashkin kills Comrade Koshkin; and let's not forget about Tolstoy going off neighing like a horse. These 'incidences' are inventive ...more
The translation is not as fluid as other English versions of his work, but this collection includes of some of Kharms' erotica I haven't read anywhere else. The stories are amazing, but the translation falls a little short for Kharms' prose.
Nicholaus Patnaude
Why couldn't he have written a novel? It would have rivaled "A Confederacy of Dunces." These stories are funny and outrageous and perfect for the easily bored. (Note: same stories as black coat anth.)
the new yorker totally discovered this guy a full four months after i did. it's purely a coincidence that i'm recommending him to you the same week they published an old story of his.
Brīnišķīgas likumsakarības absurda teātrī, kurā ikviens no mums ir aktieris. Lasīju un no bailēm smējos pilnā balsī.
Alcune volte è così assurdo e senza senso da fare il giro e far ridere. Più spesso è solo nonsenso fine a se stesso e non mi ha detto nulla.
In questa edizione però non ci sono solo racconti, ci sono lettere (alcune serie, altre scherzose), pezzi del suo diario (straziante quando non lo pagavano e faceva la fame) e degli scritti teorici (che probabilmente ho letto senza la dovuta attenzione, ma perlopiù mi hanno annoiato).
Ho amato gli Aneddoti dalla vita di Puškin, La vecchia (parodia di Delitto
I have kind of mixed feelings about this book, a collection of writings by an avant-garde Russian writer of the 30s, mostly. As a book, this collects some heterogeneous parts-- the larger part of it is Kharms' project "Incidences," which apparently is a planned sequence of prose shorts, most of which are absurd in a formal sense-- that is, there's no planned coherence between the parts, weird things happen for no reason, etc. I found most of these kind of stupid-- the absurd parts weren't absurd ...more
Michael Holland
Absurdity abounds in 'Incidences.' Random inexplicable violence occurs to unprepared people, old women fall repeatedly from windows, a drinker and hi room is gradually reduced through logical progression into nothing; nothing is solid, nothing can be held in your hands for long (to quote a Sonic Youth song). This collection shows the stark and blackly humorous surrealism of living with no certainties; where you are prey to an incidence that could destroy, transform, or disappear you forever; wit ...more
Кто-то скажет: "Чушь." Кто-то скажет: "Поток больного сознания."

А как по мне, вполне годное зеркало мира. Даже если не совсем плоское.

"Одна старуха от чрезмерного любопытства вывалилась из окна, упала и разбилась. Из окна высунулась другая старуха и стала смотреть вниз на разбившуюся, но от чрезмерного любопытства тоже вывалилась из окна, упала и разбилась. Потом из окна вывалилась третья старуха, потом четвертая, потом пятая.
Когда вывалилась шестая старуха, мне надоело смотреть на них, и я поше
Dead old people falling from the sky. Intellectuals violently debating the merits of drinking vinegar. Rancid sausage. Children dissapearing. Bottomless trash cans.

Each little story in this book is a handful of sentences that is ape-shit crazy nonsense. Punishingly funny stuff. Crying hot tears funny.

The Soviets were so threatened by Daniil Kharm's absurdism that they arrested him and he starved in prison.

Yes. This ridiculous-ass stuff was considered threatening. Radical.

Perfect for reading alou
Completely absurd and racked with violence. Despite that, there's a thread of a twisted sense of humor and a keen observation of the absurdity of life running in all these stories. The letter to his friend about getting married is brilliant in its circularity. A little too much to finish in one setting though so I'm sure I'll come back to it at some point!

LO SCRITTORE: Io sono uno scrittore.
IL LETTORE: Secondo me invece sei una m...a!
Lo scrittore resta per alcuni minuti come folgorato da questa nuova idea e cade esanime. Lo portano via.
E. Chainey (Bookowski)
Absürd Edebiyatın en nadide eserlerinden. Hemencecik okunabiliyor. Sevdim ben.
Odotin vieläkin villimpää menoa, enpä tiedä. Tykkäsin Harmsin perusvenäläisestä, selittävästä, absurdista tyylistä, mutta jotenkin kirjan koskettavuus jäi kuitenkin vähäiseksi. Tarinoissa oli joitakin helmiä ja joitakin selkeitä pettymyksiä.
Ei ihan niin hyviä juttuja kuin oletin. Joitain tosi nokkelia ja naurattavia, mutta suurin osa liian päätöntä, vaikka esim. nonsensesta pidänkin. vaikka monet pitävät ja kirjaa on kehuttu maasta taivaisiin, minulle se oli pettymys.
Aivan uskomaton kirja. Harmsin novellien epäloogisuus on nikotiiniakin koukuttavampaa kultaa. Absurdius ja irrationaalisuus ovat läsnä jokaisessa novelissa, ja täytyy sanoa, että se toimii.
Absurd, funny and shockingly violent. These tiny stories are best understood within the context of Kharms' experiences and the surreal, frightening atmosphere of 1930s Soviet life.
JP Hastings-Spital
I really love the style of his almost ridiculously brief short stories— they contain a lot for so few lines! ...more
Amira Hanafi
Watch out for falling characters...Beware of snark. You may need a head bandage, a swig of vodka, something.
Ihan parhautta! Tuo mies on hullu!
I have nothing to say about Daniil Kharms.
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Daniil Ivanovich Yuvachev (Даниил Иванович Ювачёв) was born in St. Petersburg, into the family of Ivan Yuvachev, a well known member of the revolutionary group, The People's Will. By this time the elder Yuvachev had already been imprisoned for his involvement in subversive acts against the tsar Alexander III and had become a religious philosopher, acquaintance of Anton Chekhov during the latter's ...more
More about Daniil Kharms...
Today I Wrote Nothing: The Selected Writings The Man with the Black Coat: Russia's Literature of the Absurd Kharms: The Old Woman (Bristol Russian Texts Series) It Happened Like This Nula i ništa

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