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Police AestheticsLiterature, Film, and the Secret Police in Soviet Times$
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Cristina Vatulescu

Print publication date: 2010

Print ISBN-13: 9780804760805

Published to Stanford Scholarship Online: June 2013

DOI: 10.11126/stanford/9780804760805.001.0001

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The Master and Margarita: The Devil's Secret Police File

The Master and Margarita: The Devil's Secret Police File

(p.55) Chapter Two The Master and Margarita: The Devil's Secret Police File
Police Aesthetics
Stanford University Press

This chapter examines the influence of the secret police file on Mikhail Bulgakov's novel The Master and Margarita. It analyzes the impact of Bulgakov's secret police file on his use of (auto)biographical personae, narrative masks and stylistic experimentation, and suggests that his mysterious narrator deliberately mimics the file written by the novel's secret police investigators. The chapter also shows that the influence of the secret police file can be discerned even in the writing of a novel deemed so subversive as to be first published twenty-six years after the death of its author.

Keywords:   Master and Margarita, Mikhail Bulgakov, secret police file, (auto)biographical personae, narrative masks, stylistic experimentation

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