Olesha, Yuri, 1899–1960, Russian novelist and dramatist. In his novel Envy (1927; tr. 1936) and in his other writing, Olesha focused on the conflict between the demands of an industrialized world and human spiritual needs. He wrote in a vivid, highly metaphoric style distinctly different from orthodox Soviet socialist realism.
See Envy and other Works and Love and Other Stories (1967), The Complete Short Stories and Two Fat Men (1979), The Complete Plays (1983), and No Day Without a Line (essays, 1979); study by V. Peppard (1989).