Evgenii Belodubrovskii’s Thirteen Coats is a recollection and meditation on Leningrad, Russia from his birth in 1941 on the eve of the German invasion and three-year blockade to the St. Petersburg present.
Russia’s twentieth century traumas––two world wars and a civil war––the collectivization of agriculture, the Great Terror and the Gulag slave labor camps––which endured until Stalin’s death (1953).
Evgenii Belodubrovskii and his Russian peers born during and after WWII have come of age in a world that Americans can hardly imagine. If one can apply the term Post Traumatic Stress Disorder to nations, certainly it applies to Russia. An American male can expect to live into my nineties. His Russian cohort has already been dead a decade, his life expectency fifty three years, his trauma self-medicated––vodka, cigarettes and drugs. Evgenii struggles to translate this trauma into narrative.
Evgenii Belodubrovskii's Thirteen Coats is a recollection and meditation on Leningrad–St. Petersburg from his birth in 1941 on the eve of the German invasion to the present. Thus will the Russian confront Russia's twentieth century traumas––two world wars and the long civil war that endured from the October Revolution in 1918 until Stalin's death in1953–one narrative at a time.