The Overcoat Background

The Overcoat Background

The Overcoat is one of the short stories written by a famous Russian author Nikolai Gogol. It was published in the end of the year 1842 in a volume of Gogol’s Petersburg’s narratives, and could be found on offer already in the last decade of January 1843. Into the content of this volume some other stories are included. All the stories are combined by the same place of action – St. Petersburg.

Gogol started to work on his story several times since 1839, and both the title and the protagonist’s name has been changing lots of times. It was based on an office anecdote about a poor civil servant. He was devoted to hunting and had been saving up for a rifle, but when he at last bought it, he lost it in several days. Having returned home he died of disorder and grief.

This story was destined to enter the world literature as the proclamation of social equality and inalienable rights of a person regardless his state and position. In his short story Gogol reveals the problems of so called “little people”, of those who are devoted to their jobs, but still are neither recognized nor respected. The author skillfully shows all the brutality of bureaucratic society, which destroy the weak and spoil the strong.

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