Additional Book Information
Series: New York Review Books
Publication Date: November 2, 2021
In the Eye of the Wild
by Nastassja Martin, translated from the French by Sophie Lewis
In the Eye of the Wild begins with a terrifying account of the anthropologist Nastassja Martin’s nearly fatal run-in with a Kamchatka bear while conducting research in Siberia. As an anthropologist, Martin has made a name for the fullness of her engagement with the peoples she studies. In her dangerous encounter with the bear, however, she faced something else altogether: the animal. Left severely mutilated, she undergoes multiple operations in a provincial Russian hospital, whose ghastly chief surgeon sports a mouthful of gold teeth and presides over a harem of young nurses. Back in France, she is put through new operations, meant to fix the work done in Russia, from which she emerges even more damaged. She comes to the conclusion that she must return to Kamchatka. She must discover what it means to have become, as the Evens people call it, a miedka, a person who is not only human but beast. That is the only way for her to continue her work as an anthropologist and to reconstitute herself as person.