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From the publisher
The Village, Ivan Bunin's first full-length novel, is a bleak and uncompromising portrayal of rural life in south-west Russia. Set at the time of the 1905 Revolution and centring on episodes in the lives of a landowner and his self-educated peasant brother, the book follows characters sunk so far below the average of intelligence as to be scarcely human. A triumph of bitter realism, Bunin's cruel, lyrical prose reveals the pettiness, violence and ignorance of life on the land, foreshadowing the turbulences of Russia in the twentieth century.