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To read

June 20, 2013

I hope to post on each of these individually, but in the meantime here are some recent articles about nineteenth-century Russian literature I mean to read:

Anna Ermachkova, “‘Противно, а придется написать’: Н. Некрасов в творчестве А. Чехова,” Voprosy literatury 1 (2013): 241-51.

Sarah Ruth Lorenz, “Realist Convictions and Revolutionary Impatience in the Criticism of N. A. Dobroliubov,” Slavic and East European Journal 57.1 (2013): 67-88. (abstract of 2012 conference paper)

Thomas Newlin, “The Thermodynamics of Desire in Turgenev’s Notes of a Hunter,” The Russian Review 72.3 (2013): 365-89.

Polina Rikoun, “The Maker of Martyrs: Narrative Form and Political Resistance in Ryleev’s ‘Voinarovskii,’” The Russian Review 71.3 (2012): 436-59.

I’m pleasantly surprised to see people focusing on Ryleev and Dobroliubov, and not just the Decembrists or the radical critics/revolutionary democrats as a group. And Notes of a Hunter, a.k.a. A Sportsman’s Sketches (Записки охотника, 1847-51) was an awfully big deal at the time, even if Fathers and Sons dominates college syllabuses. No idea yet why “thermodynamics” is in Newlin’s title, but the “desire” part apparently comes from the multiple meanings of охотник (‘hunter,’ but also ‘enthusiast,’ ‘volunteer,’ ‘lover [of something]’) and охота (‘hunt,’ but also ‘wish, desire’), which are related to охотно ‘willingly, voluntarily’ and хотеть ‘want.’

Ermachkova’s article is in a journal that rather annoyingly makes some of its articles available online and others not. This led lots of universities to stop subscribing to the print journal (since it’s free online anyway), so ironically it’s harder to get the non-online articles from Voprosy literatury now than it was 10 years ago. Since I can’t link to it, here’s Chekhov’s answer to a survey about whether Nekrasov had become outdated. “It’s revolting, but I’ll have to write it” is Chekhov’s reaction to being asked to take part in the newspaper survey, but what he says is positive.

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