John Berger described the great Soviet writer Andrey Platonov as ‘[understanding] living modern poverty more deeply than any other storyteller I have come across’. Published to mark Berger’s 90th birthday, A Sparrow’s Journey: John Berger reads Andrey Platonov, brings together one of Platonov’s most poignant short stories with a text by Berger on writing and poverty, inspired by his readings of Platonov’s work.
Accompanied by a CD recording of Berger reading Platonov’s story, a short essay by translator Robert Chandler, and an Afterword by Gareth Evans, this multimedia publication – the first from new imprint House Sparrow Press – brings together two kindred spirits in a unique, collaborative work. Listen to John Berger read an extract from Platonov's story here.
With their voices echoing across time and place, both Platonov and Berger’s writing asserts the importance of solidarity and coexistence between creatures, and the joys – and costs – of trying to live honourably in a dishonourable age – a message truly central and necessary to our times.