All posts tagged Chekhov

No worse than English prisons…

My work on nineteenth-century narratives about Russian imprisonment and exile has not only led me to read the classics that established the genre, notably Dostoevsky’s House of the Dead and Chekhov’s Sakhalin Island, but has also necessitated ploughing through many less celebrated works by both travellers and former prisoners and exiles. (See my previous post […]

Discovering Ivy Litvinov

A post for Women’s History Month A few weeks ago whilst preparing for my final-year undergraduate Dostoevsky class I plucked an old translation from my shelf that I’d bought a couple of years previously at the Amnesty shop in Shoreditch boxpark. I’d barely looked at it before – I tend to collect old Dostoevsky translations […]

New article: Knowing Russia’s Convicts

This week has finally seen the publication of my article ‘Knowing Russia’s Convicts: the Other in Narratives of Imprisonment and Exile in the Late Imperial Era’ in Europe-Asia Studies. It’s a special issue based on the Villains and Victims workshop which I wrote about previously, and it contains some great articles that really reflect what an […]

From Herzen to Leskov, and back again

I’ve been re-reading Nikolai Leskov’s Cathedral Clergy (Soboriane) in the excellent recent translation by Margaret Winchell (Slavica, 2010) for a new undergraduate course I’m starting to teach in the Autumn, Identities in nineteenth-century Russian literature. The first part of the course – and in many ways the most interesting for me in terms of preparing […]

Doroshevich on Sakhalin

I had other plans yesterday, but was feeling far too tired and depressed to concentrate on the writing I was supposed to be doing. So, to take my mind off present-day violent criminality at home, I started thinking about violent criminality more than a hundred years ago on the other side of the world… I recently […]

Top ten food in Russian literature

Food is a tricky subject, as there are a lot of viable candidates for inclusion – so many that I toyed with the idea of doing a top twenty, but that’s a cop out, so I’ve had to whittle it down, and some exceptional works have missed the cut. I’ll say a bit more about […]

Hughesovka revisited

Finding the concept of Welsh Noir rather appealing, I’ve been meaning to get round to reading Malcolm Pryce’s Aberystwyth novels, featuring gumshoe Louie Knight, for some time. But it was only when I picked up a copy of the latest addition to the series, From Aberystwyth With Love, that I realized its true significance. I had anticipated […]

Top Ten Murders in Russian Literature

This is the first in a new occasional series in which I’ll look at different aspects of Russian literature through a ‘Top Ten’, and hopefully give people a few reading ideas. My main rule is that writers may only have one entry in any given list. Which makes my first subject slightly trickier than it […]

Forest palaces

I recently discovered a great website by a Russian photographer, Andrei Kuzman, or Qzmn. He specializes in travel photography, the Russian wilderness, and its architecture. It’s really worth exploring the site, whether you’ve ever been to Russia and long for the birch forests (I’m a city girl but the Russian countryside definitely speaks to me), […]

Marriage in late imperial Russia

Today I went to a really great seminar given by Barbara Alpern Engel at SSEES on marriage breakdown in the reigns of Alexander III and Nicholas II. Engel is very well known as a specialist on women’s history who, among other things, has written the brilliant Mothers and Daughters: Women of the Intelligentsia in Nineteenth-Century Russia. […]