Not so much at birth as by a century or so:
The great Slavic author Nikolai Gogol, whose fans this year are celebrating his bicentenntial, and...
...demento ultra-capitalist, Ayn Rand, the Danielle Steele of the far right.
I was reminded of the former while reading that the land of his birth, the Ukraine, and of his greatest successes, Russia, are now squabbling over his literary legacy.
While that's all fine and cultural, what really stopped me in my tracks was his trademark pageboy-variant bob, which immediately called to mind (well, my mind at least) the somewhat more severe coiffure affected by the latter.
I think that as peace-loving Americans, who would never want to see lovers of literature at loggerheads (and how's that for alliteration?), we should propose the following settlement: if the Russians will agree to give Gogol back to the Ukrainians, we will happily return any prestige associated with the memory of Rand and her tiresomely talky, philosophically dubious "novels" back to the land of her birth. Problem solved.
Except for that haircut...