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Satan, Judas, a Soviet writer, and a talking black cat named Behemoth populate this satire, “a classic of twentieth-century fiction” (The New York Times). In 1930s Moscow, Satan decides to pay the good people of the Soviet Union a visit. In old Jerusalem, the fateful meeting of Pilate and Yeshua and the murder of Judas in the garden of Gethsemane unfold. At the intersection of fantasy and realism, satire and unflinching emotional truths, Mikhail Bulgakov’s classic The Master and Margarita eloquently lampoons every aspect of Soviet life under Stalin’s regime, from politics to art to religion, while interrogating the complexities between good and evil, innocence and guilt, and freedom and oppression. Spanning from Moscow to Biblical Jerusalem, a vibrant cast of characters—a “magician” who is actually the devil in disguise, a giant cat, a witch, a fanged assassin—sow mayhem and madness wherever they go, mocking artists, intellectuals, and politicians alike. In and out of the fray weaves a man known only as the Master, a writer demoralized by government censorship, and his mysterious lover, Margarita. Burned in 1928 by the author and restarted in 1930, The Master and Margarita was Bulgakov’s last completed creative work before his death. It remained unpublished until 1966—and went on to become one of the most well-regarded works of Russian literature of the twentieth century, adapted or referenced in film, television, radio, comic strips, theater productions, music, and opera.
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