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A.M. Gorky Institute
of World Literature
of the Russian Academy of Sciences

IWL RAS Publishing

A.M. Gorky Institute of World Literature
of the Russian Academy of Sciences


Povarskaya 25a, 121069 Moscow, Russia



Types of publications

About the author:

Anastasia V. Gladoshchuk, PhD in Philology, member of the editorial board of “Foreign literature” (“Inostrannaya literatura”) magazine, Leningradsky Blvd., 68/24, 125315 Moscow, Russia.

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The paper focuses on two short stories from the collection “God on Earth” (1944) of the Mexican author Jose Revueltas (1914–1976). The texts are being analysed in the perspective suggested by the only epigraph which is a citation from the IX chapter of the first part of Notes from the Underground: “And yet I think man will never renounce real suffering, that is, destruction and chaos”. It is being argued that Revueltas didn’t read Dostoevski directly, but through Lev Chestov’s essay The Conquest of the Self-Evident (1921). Forming a conceptual mark, the first (God on Earth) and the last (How great is the darkness) stories, whose action takes place at the time of the “cristeros” revolt, develop the motifs of “underground voice” and “second vision”, which Chestov deduced from Dostoevski’s novel. Enclosing God, whose voice is “not one’s one voice” of the underground man, in the realm of “earth”, Revueltas brings the state of the “underground” to the last point of despair, where only “suffering”, “destruction” and “chaos” become possible, where “well-being” is denied by “caprice”. In the world Revueltas creates every mortal, turning alternately into “beast” or “god”, finds himself in the “underground”, in accordance to Chestov’s interpretation of the “underground” as the Plato’s Cave.

  • Keywords: Jose Revueltas, Leon Chestov, The Conquest of the Self-Evident, God on Earth, Notes from Underground, reception, cristeros, chronotope, “underground voice”, “second vision”, “caprice”.


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