Tales from the East
|Author:||Vincas Krėvė Translated by Rimas Černius|
In the history of Lithuanian literature Vincas Krėvė occupies a most prominent place, acknowledged by literary specialists in the West as well as in the East. He was one of the initiators of modern Lithuanian literature.
In addition to Krėvė’s preoccupation with Lithuanian historical and legendary past, he explored with inquiring interest and probing psychological insight the rustic life of his own region of Dzūkija, as it had existed at the turn of the century, and city and village life of independent Lithuania.
The third aspect of Krėvė’s creative activities extends far beyond his native material and milieu. Since he was well acquainted with Oriental thought and literature and with the development of Christianity, Krėvė devoted a considerable part of his literary career to the study of man and his spiritual life in Oriental and Biblical times. The results of these studies were two remarkable works: the collection of tales “Rytų pasakos” (Tales from the East) and “Dangaus ir žemės sūnūs” (The Sons of Heaven and Earth).
However, Krėvė’s greatness depends not merely on his choice and variety of genres, themes or use of various literary methods, but his mastery of them all. As a result, Krėvė’s brilliant works of art signify his rare creative talent.
Bronius Vaškelis, Lituanus
(Lithuanian Quarterly Journal of Arts and Sciences, Volume 11, No. 3 – Fall 1965)