Russians no one reads
There is a tumblr of Writers No One Reads; here are the writers tagged “Russian”:
- Aleksei Remizov
- Nikolai Minskii
- Valerii Briusov
- Sasha Chernyi
- Leonid Andreev
- plus a maybe to Daniil Kharms.
A pretty good list! Here’s how not-read they are: Briusov is the only name that makes it onto an 18-page list of what graduate students studying Russian literature should have read. Andreev finds himself lumped in with the middlebrow and not quite literary. In 2005 an edition of Minskii came out in the New Poet’s Library series, but where most Great Poets get their own book, he had to share one with Aleksandr Dobroliubov. People read about Sasha Chernyi when they read Maiakovskii, and read about Remizov when they read Andrei Belyi (and would the tumblr say that anyone reads Belyi?).
My own dissertation subject is mentioned, but only in relation to another writer no one reads, to say that no one reads mine either. That’s kind of a double honor.
After seeing this I’ll have to finally read Remizov, who’s the only one on the list I haven’t read anything at all by, even though I think his talent is written about most reverently by scholars. Here Pavel Basinskii (who wrote a book about Tolstoi) interviewing Mikhail Seslavinskii last year, the 135th anniversary of Remizov’s birth.