These essayistic short stories, penned over a thirty-year period, follow Fabian, Mihkel Mutt’s strange and self-indulgent alter ego, and his adventures in newly independent Estonia. Mutt’s stories highlight the lingering absurdities of the previous Soviet regime, at the same time taking ironic aim at the triumphs and defeats, the virtues and vices of the Estonian intelligentsia.
Mihkel Mutt was born in Tartu, Estonia in 1953. He has authored scores of critical essays, short stories, novels, travel essays, and plays, in addition to working as the editor-in-chief of Estonia’s leading cultural weekly Sirp (1997–2005) and the literary journal Looming (2005–2016). He won the Tuglas Short Story Award in 1981 and in 2008, as well as the Cultural Endowment of Estonia’s Award for Essays in 2001 and 2015. In 2016, he was selected as one of five writers to receive an official Estonian state salary for their literary activities. The English translation of Mutt’s The Cavemen Chronicle (Dalkey Archive Press, 2015) was nominated for the Cultural Endowment of Estonia’s Award for Translated Literature.