Nikos Kazantzakis

Also found in: Dictionary, Wikipedia.
The following article is from The Great Soviet Encyclopedia (1979). It might be outdated or ideologically biased.

Kazantzakis, Nikos


Born Feb. 18, 1883, in Herakleion, Crete; died Oct. 29, 1957, in Freiburg, Federal Republic of Germany. Greek writer.

Kazantzakis studied law at the University of Athens and at the Sorbonne. His first works were the novella The Serpent and the Lily (1906) and the plays The Dawn Glows (performed in 1907) and The Sacrifice (1910). Between 1925 and 1929, Kazantzakis visited the USSR three times, and he hailed the October Revolution in his books What I Saw in Russia (1928), Moscow Issued a Call (in French, 1931), and Toda Raba (in Greek, 1934). His dramas Nikifor Foka (1927), Christ (1928), Journeys (1928), Melissa (1939), and Julian and Buddha from the trilogy Prometheus (all published after 1945), as well as his long poem The Odyssey, were all critical of bourgeois morality and pessimistic in tone. His novels The Greek Passion (Swedish ed., 1950; Greek ed., 1954; Russian translation, 1962), The Last Temptation of Christ (Greek ed., 1955), and Captain Mihalis: Freedom or Death (1953) express Kazantzakis’ protest against bourgeois attitudes and religious hypocrisy. From 1947, he lived in France and the Federal Republic of Germany. In 1964, Kazantzakis’ novel Zorba the Greek (1946) was made into a film of the same name by M. Cacoyannis. Kazantzakis received the International Peace Prize in 1956.


Érga. Athens, 1957–62.


Brettákos, N. Nìkos Kazantzákes. Athens, 1960.


The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.
References in periodicals archive ?
In 1938, at the age of fifty five, Nikos Kazantzakis (1883-1957) published his Odyssey: a modern sequel (orig.
It all started when writer Nikos Kazantzakis went on a business trip to Crete, to escape his bookish life.
These include not only the various silent treatments of Christ's life, the two versions of Ben-Hur (Fred Niblo, 1925; and William Wyler, 1959), and the rock opera phenomenon of the 1970s (with film versions in 1973 of two musicals: Jesus Christ Superstar and Godspell), but also the more recent controversies surrounding Martin Scorsese's lively adaptation of Nikos Kazantzakis' novel The Last Temptation of Christ and Mel Gibson's spectacularly violent The Passion of the Christ, with its supposedly "authentic" Aramaic dialogue.
In his autobiography, Report to Greco, Nikos Kazantzakis (Kazantzakis, 1965) recalls that when he was a boy his father gave him a canary and a revolving globe.
Lawrence Durrell (1912-1990) and Nikos Kazantzakis (1883-1957) were contemporaries and more importantly, they lived somewhat parallel lives.
The Venetian port, small fountains, the simple and yet impressive graveyard of famous Greek novelist Nikos Kazantzakis as well as the small tombs beneath his grave were not sufficient for us to love Kandiye.
Margraff was introduced to the history and world of the piece by composer-collaborator Nikos Brisco (himself a Greek-American, by way of Texas), who gave her the novel Freedom or Death by Nikos Kazantzakis, of Zorba the Greekfame.
In a review of this book that appeared in The American Conservative, I suggested comparison with The Last Grove, the Spanish poet Rafael Alberti's autobiography, or Report to Greco by Nikos Kazantzakis, but concluded that Eire actually surpassed them both, because "he has seen the hand of God somehow hidden beneath the kaleidoscopic wonder" of life.
The movie was based on the controversial 1960 novel of the same name by Nikos Kazantzakis and it featured an anti-hero Jesus, played by Willem Dafoe.