Glas. New Russian Writing. Volume 21. The Face-Maker and the Muse
In this issue: Leonid Latynin "The Face-Maker and the Muse". This 1978 Russian novel is about an artist who lives in "the city," a dystopian hell whose citizens are identified only by numbers - unless they happen to look like an idealized face called "the image" - created by the eponymous Face-Maker - in which case they receive a name and certain privileges. Plastic surgery, of course, plays its part in this society, as do such bizarre customs as strangling birds, as well as various bizarre sexual practices. Latynin's Orwellian fable is a powerful indictment not only of oppressive societies but of the contemporary obsession with appearance.