All posts tagged Dickens

Russian perspectives on the Great Exhibition (2)

The second article on the Great Exhibition in Sovremennik [The Contemporary] appeared in the foreign news round-up of the July-August issue. While the first report was somewhat unclear in its origins, this one was evidently cobbled together from reports in the European press. A further development is apparent regarding the naming of the building; the […]

Russians in London: Turgenev

In the history of Russians in London, Ivan Turgenev (1818-1883) in many ways acts as a transitional figure, because although most of his visits were quite short (except during the Franco-Prussian war, when he decamped to England for a year), they were frequent, and span a much longer period than those of his contemporaries. He […]

Russians in London: Lev Tolstoy

There are two sources devoted solely to Tolstoy’s two-week stay in London in March 1861, Victor Lucas’s book Tolstoy in London (1979), and A. V. Knowles’s snappily titled article, ‘Some Aspects of L. N. Tolstoy’s Visit to London in 1861: An Examination of the Evidence’ (1978). They’re very different, but share a similar and telling fault: […]

Russkii vestnik 1858

Poetry plays a strong role in the 1858 volumes, with works by Maikov, Fet, Berg, A. K. Tolstoy, Tiutchev, Pavlova, and others. Prose fiction features somewhat less, though there are number of stories, including contributions by Tur an Narskaia. Non-fictional articles are both wide-ranging and international in perspective. Although there are works on Russian history, […]

Russkii vestnik 1861

There are no particularly famous works of Russian literature in these volumes, although there are poems by Viazemsky and Almazov, as well as N. D. Akhsharumov’s A Strange Name and a couple of short stories. It’s stronger on history, with Sergei Solov’ev on 18th century Russian history, N. A. Popov on Peter the Great’s administrative […]

Russkii vestnik 1864

The volumes for 1864 feature the usual round-up of poets: Viazemsky, Fet, Almazov, and Maikov, who has supplements in the first two issues. Women writers seem more prominent than usual, with short stories by L. A. Cherkasova, Novinskaia, and Ol’ga N. The first half of Vigel’s Memoirs appears, as do the middle sections of Subbotin’s […]

Russkii vestnik 1865

These volumes of Russkii vestnik feature a number of literary works, from chapters from War and Peace and poetry by Fet, Tiutchev and Viazemsky, to the continuation of Wilkie Collins’s Armadale and, in the supplement, Dickens’s Our Mutual Friend. There are historical articles on Alexander I after 1812, the Pugachevshchina, and Lomonosov and the Academy […]

Russkii vestnik 1868

The highlight of Russkii vestnik for 1868 was the publication of Dostoevsky’s novel The Idiot, but other notable features are articles by N. A. Liubimov on advances in Physics, Hermann Laroche on Glinka, A. D. Gradovsky on Russian historical literature, and Gustave de Molinari (a regular contributor on European affairs) on the 1867 World Exhibition […]

Dostoevsky: not so grim?

The recent stories about the murals at the new Dostoevsky metro station in Moscow, which have led to concerns that it could become a favourite spot for suicides, have made me think about why Dostoevsky is considered such a depressing writer. Is it because he depicts so much poverty and misery? I doubt it, because […]

Dickens and anti-Semitism

Now I’ve finished reading Oliver Twist, I can say for certain that the depiction of Fagin is undoubtedly the most problematic aspect of the novel. It is widely known to be a graphic example of anti-Semitism, but even so, it’s quite shocking. I say this as someone who’s used to reading Dostoevsky, but I would […]