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Ivan Bunin
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    (October 22, 1870-November 8, 1953)
    Born in Voronezh, Russia
    Notable works include the short stories ‘The Village’ (1910), ‘Dry Valley’ (1912), and ‘The Gentleman from San Francisco’ (1915), the diary ‘Cursed Days’ (1926), the novella ‘Mitya’s Love’ (1925), and the novel ‘The Life of Arseniev’ (1933)
    Poetry collections include ‘In the Open Air’ (1898) and ‘Falling Leaves’ (1901)
    Went into exile in France after the Russian Revolution
    Awarded the Nobel Prize in Literature (1933)
    He was expelled from school when he failed to return after the Christmas holiday break (1886).
    He left his first wife, Anna Taskni, while she was pregnant (1900).
    He called writers who remained in Russia after the Revolution ‘servants of cannibals.’
    Anders Osterling, secretary of the Swedish Academy, said that Bunin was given the Nobel Prize ‘to pay off our bad consciences on Chekhov and Tolstoy.’
    He was arrested for distributing leaflets promoting the philosophy of Leo Tolstoy, but avoided jail when an amnesty was proclaimed upon Tzar Nicholas II succeeding to the throne (1894).
    He translated the poems of Longfellow, Tennyson, and Byron into Russian.
    He sheltered refugees in his villa during World War II.
    He was named the first honorary member of PEN International, as a representative of authors in exile (1951).
    Maxim Gorky called him ‘the best Russian writer of the day.’

Credit: C. Fishel

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