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More over Alia Rachmanova

It has been a long time since I wrote my last blog. What made me want to write again are the reactions i still have been getting for my two blog entries about Alia Rachmanova (Alja Rachmanowa and It arrived!). Apparently there are several people on the internet desperately searching for more information about her.

Here is the little information I have in my hands about this interesting woman. I hope it will be helpful to someone :) Meantime, you can find her books (mostly in dutch and german though) in second hand bookshops. Unfortunately it is almost impossible to find them anywhere else :(

The following text is a compilation from the article "Alja Rachmanowa" published in the Flow magazine in Dutch. Thank you Flow, if you did not publish that article I could never learn about this extraordinary woman! Hope you do not mind my translation :P

The Russian writer Alia (Alexandra) Rachmanowa (1898-1991) became world-famous with the wonderful trilogy “Love in the Red Storm”. It is one of the most compelling first-account story of the Russian revolution of 1917-and its tragic aftermath for the innocent civilians.  It is also the life story of a strong woman who lived disaster after disaster, but picked up the pieces each time and moved on.

Alia was born as Galina Djuragin. She chose her pseudonym in 1931 when she published “Love, Tscheka and Death” in Austria. She lived there in exile, hunted by the Bolsheviks, and did not want to cause any trouble for her family whom she had left behind with an autobiographical novel.

Alia’s parents were nobles. After the revolution their lives had no certainty. Alia had to quit her studies and the family ran away to Siberia. In Siberia, Alia met Arnulf von Hoyer, an ex-prisoner of war from Austria. He fell so much in love with Alia that he decided to stay in Russia for her-even after the revolution. They got married and in the middle of all the chaos, misery and fear, they managed to create an oasis of happiness.

In 1922 their son Jurka was born. Three years later they were unexpectedly kicked out of the country. In Vienna the two academicians tried to build a new life, starting a milk shop. Alia kept a diary all her life. That was for her a vital necessity. She drew several inspirations from her diaries for her books.

In the Nazi years, Alia’s books were forbidden, but even more tragic is the fact that Jurka was shot dead towards the end of the war. Alia and her husband had to run away again, this time to Switzerland. Despite all the misery and tragedy she went through her books are filled with an inspiring livelihood.


Das Politbüro said…
Mijn lief punkdametje Sevi!
Dat is heel lang, veel te lang geleden. Ik aarzelde, wou je al uit mijn ‘Straße der Besten” weghalen. Gelukkig publiceer je nu op de valreep iets in je blog.

Je vorige bijdragen over Alja Rachmanowa dateren van begin januari 2011 (!)

Interessant is deze Franse bespreking, situering van het oeuvre van deze diep contrarevolutionaire schrijfster :
Met dus een Vaticaanse aanbeveling (Pacelli werd later Paus Pius XII)

Er is een uitgebreide Bio- en Bibliografie over haar in het ‘Lectuur-Repertorium’ 2de uitgave (1953) Band H-R blz. 2014 (Algemeen Secretariaat voor Katholieke Boekerijen) Het is me te lang om af te schrijven. Je kan dit Repertorium gemakkelijk zelf raadplegen in de Stadbibliotheek Antwerpen Korte Nieuwstraat (bewaarbibliotheek!)
Laat me zeker iets weten!

Ik zag ooit tweedehands een vergelijkbare titel: Nicolas Belina-Podgaetsky “L’Ouragan rouge, souvenirs d’un journaliste russe” (1938)

Zo, mijn lief punkdametje, hopelijk krijg ik je nu vaker te lezen!
Kusje en heel veel liefs,
evilstrawberry said…
Jij bent on-ge-loof-lijk! you are awesome! dankjewel Nadja ik kan je niet genoeg bedanken! :)
en ik ben ook heel blij om je terug te zien. zal proberen vaker te bloggen.
heel veel liefs, en een miljoen keer bedankt! :)
Silvia said…
Thank you so much for the words you spent about Alya Rakhmanova. I'm a PhD in Russian Literature in Italy and my dissertation is just about her!
Laszlo said…
Good summary. It happens that the trilogy mentioned was also published in Hungary translated by a very well-known professor Marcell Benedek as early as 1935. My family had it and managed to keep it though it was strictly forbidden - means people were imprisoned immediately for such books if found - during the 40 years of communism in my country. Therefore I can read it now and I think it would be much better to use such books in history classes than the plain boring official ones... Strongly recommended; I plan to give it to my boys when in high school.
Anonymous said…
I found this concise article interesting and helpful. I inherited three of the books from my mother, who passed away a couple years ago. I have "Fabrik",
"Milchfrau", und "Ehren", auf deutsch, naturlich. Kind of surprising that thru all the vicissitudes of the war in Germany she was able to keep the books with her since 1938. One of the books had an added-in drawing of the author, with a signature, probably a facsimile. Anyway thank you for the article. -Hue Miller
evilstrawberry said…
thank you all so much for your comments :)

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