The theme of the artist's fate in S. Dovlatov’s essay “Riding a snail”
Having chosen the essay as the primary genre, S. Dovlatov, addresses the fate of the artist and sculptor M. Shemyakin. The article examines the central theme for the writer of the fate of a creative personality in the conditions of the totalitarian USSR regime in the era of stagnation and subsequent forced emigration. The humorous-ironic style is shown to have allowed the writer to raise the question of the fate of M. Shemyakin, I. Brodsky, his own fate and, in general, of the tragic fate of non-conformist writers in the USSR. The author reveals the shared dominant of the uncompromising service to the ideas of art, rather than the state. The pragmatics of the text is analyzed, which is achieved by S. Dovlatov through expressive, emotional-evaluative vocabulary and syntax.