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Group Reads Archive - 2011 > The Master and Margarita --Book Two -- Chapters 26-32 + Epilogue (July 05 - July 14)

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message 1: by Amalie (last edited Jul 04, 2011 10:52PM) (new)

Amalie  | 650 comments Mod
Ok everyone, we finally reached the end. I'm guessing many of you are already finshed reading it, so leave your final thoughts about the novel and any discussions about these chapters. Questions, criticisms, praises: all are most welcome!


message 2: by Silver (new)

Silver One of the things I was curious about that seemed to be recurring through the book, and particuarly toward the end of the book it came up repeatedly was the idea that cowardice is the worst vice.

I wondered if that was meant to be a message to people who are living in these repressive governments that they should stand up and fight and that they should not just bow thier heads and stand back and say nothing while they know what is happening around them is wrong.

And that in these situations the people themselves bare some of the blame if they stand by in silence and do not take the risk of speaking out against it.

I wonder if this idea is also reflected in the story of Pontius Pilot, and how everyone shared some of the guilt of what happened, for allowing it to happen even through it was wrong but no one was willing to act to stop it.


message 3: by Amalie (last edited Jul 08, 2011 10:14PM) (new)

Amalie  | 650 comments Mod
Silver wrote: "One of the things I was curious about that seemed to be recurring through the book, and particuarly toward the end of the book it came up repeatedly was the idea that cowardice is the worst vice.
..."


It does have a thematic importance, doesn't it? It's here in my book that Bulgakov himself, according to one of his friends, regarded cowardice as the worst of all vices. I wonder without a more complete understanding of Russian history and sociological background, did I miss much of the more subtle metaphors in this.

Well...it's the end --I wish more people had joined into read or post their thoughts on this, I've finished the novel and really enjoyed the reading.

EDIT----

I do have a quesiton is the end, it's obviously intentional I guess: why only the master's name was never revealed? and is he called "Master" because he is a master of arts?


message 4: by Natasha (new)

Natasha | 37 comments Oooh.... Master of arts? Who knows? Maybe... :)

Bulgakov deliberately didn't give any name to Master in order to not to be simply a writer on matters of everyday life! He wrote about universal values, and he used broad generalization. IT DOESN't MATTER what was Master's name and what university degree he had. For the author a real writer is always a Master...


message 5: by Terentij (new)

Terentij Oslyabya | 5 comments "2010: Israeli director Terentij Oslyabya makes an animation film The master and Margarita, chapter 1. His movie literally follows every word of the novel."
2 minutes with English subtitels:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JgVaZv...


message 6: by dely (new)

dely | 340 comments Natalie wrote: "For the author a real writer is always a Master..."

As at the end of the story when Korovev wants to go in the restaurant where it is allowed to enter only with a card and says to the saleswoman if Dostoyevsky needs this card too to be considered a real writer.
I think that is again an attack on censorship that has endured Bulgakov; to make understand that you can be a good writer regardless of owning a card of club for writers and regardless of censorship.

Unfortunately I have finished the book only yesterday so I couldn't join the group read. And sorry if I don't write the names correctly but I read the italian edition and surely the names are written a little bit different.


message 7: by Natasha (new)

Natasha | 37 comments dely wrote: "Natalie wrote: "For the author a real writer is always a Master..."

As at the end of the story when Korovev wants to go in the restaurant where it is allowed to enter only with a card and says t..."


Dely, it's one of many examples corroborating the timeless truth of this novel!


message 8: by Natasha (new)

Natasha | 37 comments Terentij wrote: ""2010: Israeli director Terentij Oslyabya makes an animation film The master and Margarita, chapter 1. His movie literally follows every word of the novel."
2 minutes with English subtitels:
http..."


Terentij,is it you who is the Israeli director making an animation of The Master and Margarita? I've watched chapter 1, thanks, it's good.


message 9: by Terentij (new)

Terentij Oslyabya | 5 comments Thank you.


message 10: by Amalie (new)

Amalie  | 650 comments Mod
Terentij wrote: ""2010: Israeli director Terentij Oslyabya makes an animation film The master and ..."

Nice! Thanks for sharing.

dely wrote: "Unfortunately I have finished the book only yesterday so I couldn't join the group read. ..."

I'm glad you joined anyway. I thought everyone had forgotten the poor Master and Margarita.


message 11: by dely (new)

dely | 340 comments Amalie wrote: "I'm glad you joined anyway. I thought everyone had forgotten the poor Master and Margarita."

My problem is that I started the book too late and so I was able to reach you only at the end. I hope to do better with Dead Souls, it is already ready on the table :-)

I have a question about Bulgakov: does he hate Pushkin? Because in the book sometimes there are quips against him (for ex. one of the characters who is in a car and gets angry with the statue of Pushkin) or against his books (for ex. Eugene Onegin).

And I wanted also to say that I envy the russians that can read it in the original language and because they know all the political and historical background. Sometimes it was too difficult to understand everything that is behind and perhaps I have a bad edition because it is without notes and I think these are important in a book like this.


message 12: by Amalie (new)

Amalie  | 650 comments Mod
dely wrote: "I have a question about Bulgakov: does he hate Pushkin? Because in the book sometimes there are quips against him ..."

Oh no! Actually it's the other way around I think Bulgakov loved Pushkin, like all Russians and non-Russians do ( I love him!). Pushkin's works were also banned by czar Nicholas. So I guess there's a similarity, just like the Master in the novel, this is another master/genius lived in a repressive state.

I think references to Pushkin comes like interludes or even interwoven to show such masters of art cannot be wiped out out by any political manipulations. So I think in the end Pushkin enriches Bulgakov's theme!

Can't wait to start Dead Souls! Hope to see you there.


message 13: by dely (new)

dely | 340 comments Amalie wrote: "dely wrote: "I have a question about Bulgakov: does he hate Pushkin? Because in the book sometimes there are quips against him ..."

Oh no! Actually it's the other way around I think Bulgakov loved..."


So it is another metaphor by Bulgakov to underline censorship. I thought it was a kind of envy because Pushkin was loved by everybody (I didn't know that zar Nicholas had banned his works) and Bulgakov, instead, was subjected to censorship.


message 14: by Booksy (new)

Booksy | 8 comments Dely, you are right, the English version of the novel Indeed feels too official and in places clumzy and heavy. I remeber I read the novel when I was a uni back in Russia and the proze left such a light and wonderful feeling which stayed with me all these years. When I opened an Englosh translation, I couldn't read it, so different and heavy it seemed to me.


message 15: by Terentij (new)

Terentij Oslyabya | 5 comments http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=03tsrw...
The master and Margarita, every single word has been illustrated; every single word has been translated.
Meanwhile its only 4 min with English subtitles.
I've finished 1 chapter in Russian and 5 min of the 2 chapter; I'll hope it will be interesting for English readers to see every detail of the discussion in the 1 chapter.
I'll complete English subtitles in October.
The graffiti in the beginning of the movie it's the real graffiti from the Bulgakov house in Moscow and the door to his apartment - A Naughty Apartment. This graffiti was destroyed by vandals in late 90th.


message 16: by Terentij (new)

Terentij Oslyabya | 5 comments http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=u4EWpS...
I've completed English subtitles for the 1 chptr.
My sincere gratitude to the brilliant Russian-English translator, who made these subtitles possible, but he asked me to keep his name in secret.


message 17: by Chris (new)

Chris | 32 comments Im obviously way behind everyone. The entire county only has one copy of the book so I had to wait for two people to finish before I got it and now Im late but it was AMAZING. One of the best books I've ever read. I love the whole line of Faust and Daniel Webster and reading the Russian version of it with their excessive superstitions was great. However, I was left with a few questions at the end.

1) What was the meaning behind Judas being murdered rather than committing suicide?

2) Where do the master and Margarita end up?? It doesn't seem to be heaven, but it's not quite hell either. Do Greek Orthodox believe in purgatory?

3) Was Bulgakov an atheist? I feel that makes a big difference in interpreting a lot of things in this novel.


message 18: by Firda (new)

Firda (ffirdafz) | 14 comments Chapter 32 reminds me of Faust part two, the last chapter where Margarete, as a spirit of heaven (errr you know, una poenitentium) lifted Faust to heaven, eventually to his final resting place, as a reward for his ceaseless toil on earth. While it is rather a different case and situation for the Master, I can't help thinking that Margarita's position and role to the Master at the chapter is echoing Margarete's role in the very end of Faust.

Chris wrote: "Im obviously way behind everyone. The entire county only has one copy of the book so I had to wait for two people to finish before I got it and now Im late but it was AMAZING. One of the best books..."
I have no idea either about Judas, but I will tell my thoughts about number 2 and 3.

2) Matthew Levi said in earlier chapter that the Master can't be granted light, for he wanted peace not light. While peace can sometimes be viewed as a lesser reward than light, I think that in the Master's case it is just as equal as a reward to light. The Master is somehow burdened by his novel, and for everything he has gone through he wanted only peace of mind. Giving the Master light means enlightenment (or so I thought) to everything his mind has been through in his life, which means his torture and burden on him from his novel will be greater (for he would have clearer insights on his novel after given light), which also implies that for the Master, light (if it can really be interpreted as heaven) is no better, if not worse, than hell. So then, it is purgatory? Maybe it can be viewed as one, but I tend to think it is a heaven of its kind, specially reserved for the Master and Margarita.

3) I don't see any direct mention, but in the Bulgakov's wikipedia article there is a category that mention Russian orthodox born (or something like that). While it is possible that a child of a theology professor assistant (and a grandchild of orthodox priest from both lines) can become an atheist, after looking at the category I don't think Mikhail Bulgakov was one.


message 19: by B. P. (new)

B. P. Rinehart (ken_moten) | 59 comments I'm coming to this really, but my quick question is how much does having read the novel Dead Souls improve one's understanding of this book? In the endnotes to my edition I repeatedly saw Gogol's novel being referenced.


message 20: by Mark (last edited Apr 30, 2018 10:49AM) (new)

Mark André Hi Ken!

I didn't know that there was a M & M read going on. In my humble opinion, having read both books, I would say that there is no connection at all between Gogol's weird story and Bulgakov's weird story. On the other hand there may be some interesting biographical similarities between two crazy Russian authors who from time to time chose to throw their manuscripts into fires.


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