Mikhail Weisskopf: The double lining of Gogol’s “Overcoat”

Dr. M. Weisskopf’s lecture is devoted to Gogol's famous story "Overcoat". It is believed to reflect the pathetic hopes and the tragedy of the so-called "little man" who will later become one of the central figures in Russian realistic prose. Mikhail Weisskopf revises radically this traditional view. He interprets the masterpiece as a superbly camouflaged system of logical traps and mystifications covering the entire hero’s life story – since his birth and baptizing – and the life of St. Petersburg as its background.  A world of continuous fictions from the black mass to catharsis hides and slightly reveals Gogol's genuine religious attitudes infinitely far from the standard piety.

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