All posts tagged Chernyshevsky

Crystal Palace (F. C.): Chernyshevsky’s barmy army

This piece first appeared on the SSEES Research Blog on 30 May 2013. When one thinks of Russian connections to English football, it is most likely the owners and shareholders of certain premier league clubs that will to spring to mind, or the small number of Russians who have played for English clubs, including Roman […]

Top ten undead in Russian literature

“The dead are people too.” Andrei Platonov, The Foundation Pit Perhaps unsurprisingly, given the influence on nineteenth-century Russian literature of romantic and gothic sensibilities, and of fantastic writers from ETA Hoffmann to Edgar Allan Poe, the notion of the undead plays a significant role for some of the most prominent Russian writers. Encompassing not only […]

Russian thought lecture 10: Utopias in Russian culture: of palaces and panopticons

Reading: Dostoevsky, “Dream of a Ridiculous Man” (1877) So we come to the end of this lecture series, and a slightly different focus than previously, as theoretical works take a back seat, and we look instead at Russian literature and culture to explore the utopian theme. There are clearly strong utopian aspects to the work […]

Russian Thought lecture 6: Populism: the Intelligentsia and the People

Readings: Alexander Herzen, “The Russian People and Socialism” (1851); Petr Lavrov, “Historical Letters” (1868-9); Nikolai Mikhailovskii, “What is Progress?” (1869); Mikhail Bakunin, “Statism and Anarchy, Appendix A” (1873) Unlike the other movements we have studied in this course so far, which have been purely theoretical, the subject of today’s lecture – Populism (narodnichestvo), and related […]

Russian thought lecture 5: Dostoevsky and the anti-rationalist argument

Reading: Dostoevsky, Notes from Underground (1864) This week we turn to the main response to the Nihilists’ ideas of rational egoism and social reorganization, in the form of Dostoevsky’s 1864 novel, Notes from Underground. Dostoevsky is the only writer whose fictional texts we are examining in any detail, but I think this is justified in […]

Russian thought lecture 4: Nihilism and the birth of Russian radicalism: from science to art

Readings: Nikolai Chernyshevsky, extracts from “The Anthropological Principle in Philosophy” (1860); Dmitry Pisarev, “The Realists” (1864) and “The Thinking Proletariat” (1865) We’re now moving away from the debate that arose initially out of Chaadaev’s “First Philosophical Letter” and dominated Russian intellectual life in the 1830s and 1840s. In the next generation a different set of […]

Russian thought lecture 3: The Westernizers and concepts of the self: from reconciliation to action

Readings: Vissarion Belinsky, “Society and the Individual” (1839) extracts from “Letters to Botkin” (1840-1841) and “Letter to Gogol” (1847); Alexander Herzen, extracts from “Dilettantism in Science” (1843) “From the Other Shore” (1848-9) and “Robert Owen” (1861). Having examined the Slavophiles and the development of the idea of communality as a specifically Russian phenomenon, we now […]

Russian thought lecture 2: the Slavophiles and Russian communality

Readings: Aleksei Khomiakov, “On Humboldt” (1849) and “On the Church” (1855); Ivan Kireevskii, “A Reply to A. S. Khomiakov” (1839) and “On the Nature of European Culture and its Relation to the Culture of Russia” (1852); Konstantin Aksakov, “Memorandum to Alexander II on the Internal State of Russia” (1855) The Slavophiles were a group of […]

Four short links (and more): the art of protest

I don’t do politics on this blog, but political art is allowed, and there have been some particularly good examples of creative protest and subversive art in Russia recently. So, while I’m stuck at home with pneumonia, a little round-up to pass the time, because I haven’t got the energy to do anything more taxing. […]

Chaucer, Chernyshevsky and the Crystal Palace

Or, Russian perspectives on the Great Exhibition (4). The late arrival of much of the Russian exhibit probably explains why we have to wait until the August issue of Sovremennik to read any details about what one assumes would have been of some significance to many Russian readers. The majority of the report is taken, […]