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Enemies

Enemies
Your Price: $18.99 CDN
Author: Maxim Gorky
Publisher: Fredonia Books (NL)
Format: Softcover
# of Pages: 97
Pub. Date: 2001
ISBN-10: 1589634713
ISBN-13: 9781589634718

About the Play:

Enemies is a full-length dark comedy by Maxim Gorky. The play depicts a society coming apart on the eve of revolution.

Enemies is a powerful drama about the social ferment that culminated in the 1917 Russian Revolution is set on an estate in provincial Russia in 1905. In a sunlit-dappled garden, some factory owners and their wives discuss the unrest amongst the workers. Rather than submit to a strike, they decide to close down the factory. When an owner is slain in a scuffle with a workman, the ensuing investigation uncovers the socialist fervour that is sweeping the countryside. The play goes beyond depicting class struggle by keenly examining the gulfs between youth and old age, vision and shortsightedness and conservatism versus change. Maxim Gorky's explosive portrait of Russia on the doorstep of the Bolshevik Revolution remains strikingly current and immediate.

Written in 1906 after St Petersburg's Bloody Sunday, Enemies was suppressed at the time. It was first premiered in Berlin in 1906 and given a further production by Piscator in the Berlin of the early 1920s, and in Soviet Russia not until the 1930s. Major revivals in America and Britain came only in the 1970s.

Cast: 8 women, 17 men (doubling)

What people say:

"Banned in pre-Revolutionary Russia in 1907, Gorky's Enemies proved to be socially and politically prophetic, predicting the ascendancy of the working class. As a play, it is filled with humanity and richness of characterization. On its landscape are oppressed workers who are fighting for equity, oppressive managers and officials and the helpless who include, prominently, a paternalistic factory owner and his alcoholic brother. Along with The Lower Depths and Summerfolk, Enemies' is one of the cornerstones of Gorky's theatrical reputation." — New York Times

About the Playwright:

Maxim Gorky (1868 – 1936) was the pseudonym of Aleksei Maksimovich Peshkov, a Russian short story writer, novelist, autobiographer, essayist, and political activist whose life was deeply interwoven with the tumultuous revolutionary period of his own country.