Mazhit Gafuri

Gafuri, Mazhit Nurganievich

 

(also Gabdulmazhit Nurganievich Gafuri). Born July 20 (Aug. 1), 1880, in the village of Elem-Karanovo, in present-day Gafuri Raion, Bashkir ASSR; died Oct. 28, 1934, in Ufa. Soviet Bashkir and Tatar poet; the founder of Soviet Bashkir literature; People’s Poet of the Bashkir ASSR (1923).

Gafuri appeared as a writer and educator on the eve of the Revolution of 1905-07 with the collection of poetry Siberian Railroad (1904) and a short story, “A Life of Penury” (1903). In 1905, Gafuri participated in student disturbances in Kazan. His writing took a revolutionary and a democratic nature. During the years of reaction, his collections of poetry My Young Life (1906) and Love of Nation (1907) were confiscated; in 1911 he was put under police surveillance. Gafuri welcomed the Great October Revolution (the collection Red Banner, 1917). His best works were produced in the Soviet period: the narrative poem The Worker (1921); Red Star, a play about the Civil War and the building of a new life; the stories Black Faces (1927), on woman’s disfranchisement before the revolution, and Stages of Life (1930), on molding the minds of the masses during the years of war and revolution; and the autobiographical In the Poet’s Gold Fields (1931). Gafuri, one of the founders of a national children’s literature, also wrote publicistic works.

WORKS

Saylanma äsärlär, Kazan, 1954-55. Vols. 1-2.
Äthärdhär, vols. 1-6. Ufa, 1954-57.
In Russian translation:
Izbrannoe. Ufa, 1955.
Povesti. Moscow, 1952.
Stupeni zhizni. Moscow, 1958.

REFERENCES

Istoriia bashkirskoi sovetskoi literatury: Ocherki, part 1. Ufa, 1963. Pages 89-157.
Baykov, S. Khalïq shagire Mäzhit Gafuri. Ufa, 1940.
Mäzhit Gafuri turahïnda zamandashtarï. Ufa, 1961.
Ramazanov, G. Mäzhit Gafuri izhadï. Ufa, 1965.

G. Z. RAMAZANOV