Life and Fate Read Along, Part 1 Chapter 14

Life and Fate Read Along, Part 1 Chapter 14
Photo by Łukasz Rawa / Unsplash

This post, covering Part 1, Chapter 14, is part of The Slavic Literature Pod’s chapter a day read along of Vasily Grossman’s Life and Fate. Learn more about our project here.

Ukrainian accents, buckwheat kasha, and German schnapps fill the sounds and smells of the battlefield. Today we join Major Byerozkin on his inspection of Podchufarov’s battalion. But, in order to get to the more menial task of army management, we must first endure another munition-whistling trip across 

Although Byerozkin puts the troops at ease, the narrator still notes his perceptiveness. Byerozkin observes at the end of the inspection “First — I don’t like the way you treat your wounded. You’ve got divans at the command-post and your wounded are just lying on the floor. Second — you haven’t sent for fresh bread and your men are eating dry rusks. Third — your political instructor Soshkin was roaring drunk,” (p. 67).