The Reception of Russian Silver Age Literature in Europe and the United States

Merrill J.



RUDN Journal of Studies in Literature and Journalism. 2022;27(2):231-236
pages 231-236 views


Russian Modernist Poetry in English-Language Anthologies of the Twentieth Century

Kuznetsova E.V.


Modernist poetry is an intense stage in the development of Russian poetry, which builds a bridge between the poetry of the XIX century and that of the XX century. Russian modernist poetry in English-language anthologies has not yet become the subject of analysis. This article is one of the first attempts to narrow the gap. It reviews nine independent publishing projects, which record the poetic experience of modernists in a variety of ways. Almost each of them gives its own list of authors and their hierarchy, and the very concept of “modern Russian poetry” is understood differently in each instance. This selection is not intended to be exhaustive, but it allows us to draw certain conclusions on how the poetry of Russian modernism was introduced to English-speaking countries. Interest in Russian modernist poetry intensified in connection with certain historic events: the Russian Revolution and the first wave of emigration that followed it; World War II and the leading role of the USSR in the victory over fascism; and the 1960s and the “third wave” of emigration. Most of the reviewed anthologies were published during one of these periods. The biographies of the compilers and editors of these anthologies show that the English-speaking reader was introduced to Russian poetry either by emigrant scholars who were born and raised in Russia and who were native speakers of Russian (A. Yarmolinsky, D. Svyatopolk-Mirsky, D. Obolensky, V. Markov), or English and American Russophile enthusiasts who fell in love with the Russian language and literature while traveling around the country (M. Baring, J. Shelley, C.F. Coxwell, M.S. Bowra). Their efforts were so fruitful that they not only opened the world of Russian modernist poetry to English-speaking readers but also made them better acquainted with it than the Russian-speaking audiences, especially given that a lot of poets of the Modernist era were banned in Russia or consigned to oblivion.

RUDN Journal of Studies in Literature and Journalism. 2022;27(2):237-256
pages 237-256 views

Fedor Sologub in English-Language Anthologies: 1915-1950

Merrill J.


The history of the reception of the Russian Symbolist movement in English begins in the 1890s. Readers in Great Britain and the United States could read about the Russian Symbolist Fedor Sologub long before any of his works were translated into English. During World War I and a parallel wave of interest in Russia, Sologub is one of the most popular Russian writers in the English-speaking world. Some of his poetry and prose works are translated into English and during the years 1915-1950 are included in no fewer than 28 Englishlanguage anthologies. During the first years of this period, almost all of his prose that is accessible to English readers is selected and translated by two translators, John Cournos and Stephen Graham. His poetry, on the other hand, is selected and translated by several translators over the course of this entire period. Anthologies with works by Sologub appear in two main waves: from 1915 until the middle of the 1920s, and in the 1940s after the outbreak of WWII. These anthologies demonstrate how Sologub was presented to English-speaking audiences during these years. This article examines English-language anthologies from this period, comparing what, if anything, is said about Sologub in their introductions to the works by Sologub they include. Some presented him as the quintessential decadent, while others tried to show the various sides of Sologub’s works. It is often the case in anthologies that the opinions of Sologub presented by editors are not supported by the works by Sologub these same editors selected for inclusion. The article ends with three bibliographical appendices listing Sologub’s anthologized poetry and prose and the anthologies that included them.

RUDN Journal of Studies in Literature and Journalism. 2022;27(2):257-285
pages 257-285 views

John Cournos - Fedor Sologub’s Translator into English and the Role Played by Zinaida Vengerova

Smith M.S., Yushkova E.V.


Fedor Sologub entered British literary consciousness only after the onset of WWI. The British-Russian war alliance was auspicious for the translation of Russian literature, bringing about what John Cournos termed a “Russian Boom.” In 1915 alone, two translated collections of Sologub’s short stories appeared. This paper examines the British reception of Sologub, with a focus on John Cournos (1881-1966), one of Sologub’s earliest and most prolific translators, and the role played by Zinaida Vengerova (1867-1941) as mediator between translator and author. In her correspondence with Sologub, Vengerova promotes Cournos as translator. A more pressing concern for Vengerova was to convince Sologub to make Cournos his “authorized” translator. This paper also argues that the reception of Sologub in Britain must be contextualized in terms of war propaganda. Politically, the British government prioritized the promotion of brotherly feeling between the two allies and a positive opinion of Russia. Prior to the war alliance, the British public held a negative opinion of tsarist Russia, of its government and culture. The controversial nature of Sologub’s writing complicated his critical reception.

RUDN Journal of Studies in Literature and Journalism. 2022;27(2):286-298
pages 286-298 views

British and American Reception of The Red Laugh by Leonid Andreev

Markova E.A.


The article deals with the English-language reception of The Red Laugh , one of the most well-known of Leonid Andreev’s texts both in Russia and abroad. As the examples of this reception, a number of newspaper and magazine publications, memoirs, translators’ prefaces, and works of fiction are analyzed. There exist several waves of interest in Andreev’s story. They could be explained either by the appearance of new translations or by significant historic events of the time (the Russian Revolution, World Wars I and II). Andreev’s critics in Britain and America place his story in a variety of contexts - historical, social, cultural, and literary. Some literary parallels are quite expected and seem to come from Russian sources (parallels with Gorky, Tolstoy, Chekhov, Turgenev), others are completely original and ‘indigenous’ to Britain and America (commentators of Andreev’s text see its resemblance with the horror and “weird” fiction of Poe, Hawthorne, Henry James, as well as with some works of war fiction, such as The Red Badge of Courage by Stephen Crane). A wide spectrum of characteristics is given to the author of The Red Laugh ; he is perceived as a realist, expressionist, an author of horror and weird fiction, a symbolist, and a decadent.

RUDN Journal of Studies in Literature and Journalism. 2022;27(2):299-322
pages 299-322 views

French Translations and Lifetime Publications of Nikolai Goumilev: А Dialogue with the French reader. Part One

Yakubovskaya K.A.


This article examines in detail the circumstances of the creation of all Gumilev’s French texts known today. The research focuses on Russian-French literary relations at the beginning of the 20th century, the chronological order of Gumilev’s Russian poems and their French versions, the textual features and particularities of the translations attributed to Gumilev and the history of their publication. Particular attention is paid to Gumilev’s desire to enter the circle of French writers, thanks to his acquaintance with René Ghil, and then to determine the perception of his work in France through his acquaintance, correspondence and subsequent cooperation with Jean Chuzeville. The article presents an analysis of the selection principle of poems, both those translated for the “Anthology” and those featured in Gumilev’s notebooks, as well as the approach to the translation of poems in verse or prose. In conclusion, possible explanations of why Nikolai Gumilev combined his (alleged) self-translations in a notebook just before his return from France to Russia are given.

RUDN Journal of Studies in Literature and Journalism. 2022;27(2):323-344
pages 323-344 views

“After All, They Don’t Know Anything About Us...”: Russian Literature in French Periodicals of the Early 20th Century. Reviews by Valery Bryusov, Zinaida Gippius, Yakov Povolotsky

Savina A.D.


With the considerable attention paid to Russian-French cultural ties, the topic of the French reception of the Silver Age literature still remains poorly studied. In this paper, we consider three review articles that rarely come to researchers’ attention. These are texts written by Russian authors in French for French magazines: “Letter on Russian Literature” by V.Ya. Bryusov (“Le Beffroi”, 1905), “Notes on Russian Literature of Our Time” by Z.N. Gippius (“Mercure de France”, 1908), and “Russian poets” Ya.M. Povolotsky (“La Grande Revue”, 1911). All the cases are not a part of regular cooperation with the French press, but individual performances aspiring to convey the authors’ vision of the modern literary process in Russia to a foreign audience. All the authors, under the guise of objective reviews, seek to acquaint readers with the literature of symbolism. The ideas presented in Bryusov’s and Gippius’s texts are very similar to those found in their numerous Russian articles and notes, but their assessments of “realist” writers turn out to be less harsh than on the pages of Russian magazines. Nevertheless, for both critics, the appeal to M. Gorky and L. Andreev is only a pretext for introducing symbolist writers. Unlike Bryusov and Gippius, Yakov Povolotsky in his article on Russian poets turns out to be not so much the creator of a concept of his own, but a systematizer. His system is based on already existing views. He identifies three groups of poets and describes the “masters” in meticulous detail. Some assessments made in the given articles seem obvious today, but it should be noted that all the authors assume that the French public knows nothing about Russian non-realistic literature.

RUDN Journal of Studies in Literature and Journalism. 2022;27(2):345-358
pages 345-358 views

Bakhtin as a Bearer of the Russian Tradition: On the Current Status of the Reception of Bakhtin’s Thought in China

Ma M.


This article aims to study the current status of the reception of Bakhtin’s thought in China. The choice of this period is explained by the fact that in recent decades Chinese researchers have begun to search for the origins of Bakhtin’s thought. While some have insisted on a Western origin of Bakhtin’s theories, most Chinese scholars have linked Bakhtin’s thought with the Slavic tradition and the Russian Orthodox Church, in particular, with the concept of “sobornost”. This opened up new opportunities for further research. In this article, the author gives an overview of the research on the relationship between Bakhtin’s thought and the Russian tradition, noting that Chinese scholars’ research in this area is focused on various aspects: some discuss the influence of the idea of “sobornost” on the creative consciousness of Dostoevsky, the structure of literary works and Bakhtin’s polyphonic thought; others write about the phenomenon of “carnival” as a Russian phenomenon in Bakhtin; while others talk about Christian anthropology and psychology in Bakhtin’s works, or make a comparative analysis of Bakhtin’s thought and Western philosophy. This article shows how M.M. Bakhtin was perceived from another perspective and cultural tradition, which enriched his ideas with new meanings and connotations. Based on the analysis, the author comes to the conclusion that the concept of “sobornost” has similarities with collectivism, which has historically developed as a traditional value of the Chinese people. Therefore, Chinese scholars easily understood the concept of “sobornost”.

RUDN Journal of Studies in Literature and Journalism. 2022;27(2):359-370
pages 359-370 views


Lafcadio Hearn: Between Literature and Journalism

Salnikova A.N.


The article is devoted to the early period of the work of the Anglo-American writer Lafcadio Hearn (1850-1904). It mainly includes American articles in periodicals. The topic is poorly studied in the domestic research field, as well as Hearn’s works in general, which leads to scientific novelty. The study was carried out with the help of intertextual and motive analysis of newspaper articles in identifying common plots of the writer’s work and references to other authors. It is noted that although Hearn became famous thanks to his stories and legends collected in Japan, he was formed as a writer in America. The article examines the features of Hearn’s style as a journalist: author’s masks (detective, comical narrator, whistleblower), playful communications with the reader, the presence of Gothic elements, references to literary works of favorite authors, common vocabulary, and combination of real facts with fiction. Hearn’s role as a forerunner of whistle-blowing journalism and new journalism is noted, and a series of articles on the tannery murder are examined. There is a movement from sensational and shocking articles to more calm meditative observations, from external to internal. Journalistic experience, as the study showed, significantly influenced Hearn’s literary activity (brevity of form, mixing documentary and fiction, elements of a detective story, subjective position of the narrator).

RUDN Journal of Studies in Literature and Journalism. 2022;27(2):371-379
pages 371-379 views

Patriarch of National Radio Broadcasting: To the 100th Anniversary of Professor V.N. Ruzhnikov

Tikhonova O.V.


The article is dedicated to Professor Vsevolod Nikolaevich Ruzhnikov, Doctor of Philology, whose name is associated with the very first scientific studies of the phenomenon of radio, radiotelegraphy and radiotelephony. The purpose of the author is to recall that Professor Ruzhnikov is the founder of the national scientific school of radio journalism: he comprehended and systematically presented (in the format of textbooks and monographs) the history of radio broadcasting and radio journalism, presented the genre palette of radio programs, studied the functions and principles of radio organizations. He is a co-organizer of the country’s first university department of radio broadcasting and television of the Faculty of Journalism of Moscow State University (now it is called the Department of Television and Radio Broadcasting). The contribution of Vsevolod Nikolaevich Ruzhnikov to editorial and publishing activities is significant; the features of his editing of scientific texts require a separate study. The author of the article, in the past a postgraduate student of the professor, and now the scientific editor of the annual Ruzhnikov Readings at Moscow State University, refers to unstudied materials that are not known to modern media students and young scientists, radio journalists. The facts of the biography of Professor Ruzhnikov reflect the personality of a teacher and a citizen - a bearer of high moral values. The article uses the methods of retrospection, observation and in-depth interviews.

RUDN Journal of Studies in Literature and Journalism. 2022;27(2):380-387
pages 380-387 views

Revising the Assessment of Creative Competence of Journalism Students

Gavrilov V.V.


This study proposes an effective development methodology for evaluating the creativity of journalism students. Within the framework of university education, it is proposed to focus the attention of teachers on creating a special educational environment (media park), where progressive forms and methods of teaching, game methods are used systematically, in the context of the ecology of media processes. The peculiarity of the methodology is that at the end of the educational process (the creation of a specific media product by the students), its effectiveness is measured by comparing the initial and final indicators of the creative competence of student journalists. The author proposes to use S. Mednik’s speech-thinking creativity test, which is based on an assessment of the level of development of the student’s thinking and speech in their relationship, which is extremely important for future journalists. The article presents the results of the practical application of this type of assessment. The relevance and novelty of the problematic are due to the following circumstances. On the one hand, active forms and methods of teaching, including project activities, are widely used in universities, on the other hand, the methodology for assessing the creative competence of students is currently not well developed and is practically not used in the curriculum. It should also be recognized that the assessment of this competence and the products of creativity in general, which, of course, includes a journalistic text, is complex and ambiguous, since it is influenced by a large number of subjective factors. This article proposes one of the ways to resolve this contradiction.

RUDN Journal of Studies in Literature and Journalism. 2022;27(2):388-398
pages 388-398 views

Basic Approaches to the Typology of Digital Media Platforms

Polyakov M.L.


Digital platforms are in a spotlight for researchers all around the world. These studies are done in areas of communications, sociology, economics, information technologies, management. Scholars use a lot of approaches to define platforms, make their typology and systematization. The article describes and analyzes theoretical approaches, definitions, conceptualization, and typologies of digital platforms of ten recent years from 2010 till 2021. As a result, I conclude some common definition. Part of this typology and platform segment are platforms based on advertising business model. That type of digital platforms have generated new media industry segment - context and target advertising - and some of these platforms concentrated a significant part of global adverting market. They may be defined as digital media platforms . Typology and definitions of platforms could be used in universities with such studies like “Communications”, “Journalism”, “Advertising and public relations”, “Economics”.

RUDN Journal of Studies in Literature and Journalism. 2022;27(2):399-413
pages 399-413 views

Structural and Semiotic Features of the Virtual Narrative in Immersive RIA.Lab Projects

Samartsev O.R., Latenkova V.M., Sleptsov N.A.


The article examines the semiotic features of the virtual narrative in the projects of RIA.Lab platform of the leading Russian news agency “Russia Today”. The aim is to analyze the structural, linguistic and iconic elements of the virtual narrative in relation to the projects of immersive journalism, highlighting their features, taking into account the multimodal nature of virtual reality and the simulative aspect of the sign system of immersive works. Virtual space is not only a narrative environment with special topos, chronotope and other narrative elements, but is itself a semiotic element, participating in the process of semiosis, the space of virtual “language game”. The thesis is put forward that VR, being an element of the multimodal information and communication universe, contains in its structure other modalities (TV, radio, cinema, print formats), and is multidimensional, a kind of “modus in modus”. The thesis on the priority of the modeling approach to the creation of immersive mass-media content over the simulative one and the necessity of observing the balance between modeling and simulation in immersive journalism are discussed. The specifics of conventional conditions of interpretation of simulacra signs in virtual space, which depend on the degree of their identity to the signs of real reality and the “rules of the virtual game”, set by the authors, are outlined. The directions of increasing the pragmatic efficiency of virtual narrative through the variability of its affords, the use of emphases, haptics (tactile experience) and other means of VR are outlined.

RUDN Journal of Studies in Literature and Journalism. 2022;27(2):414-424
pages 414-424 views

Verbal Claim vs. Actual Usage of Social Media: A Case Study of Indians Aged 50 Years and Above

Prachi D., Singh C.P., Volkova I.I.


Studies have revealed how millennials use social networking sites (SNS) but users aged 50 years and above have not been studied by SNS researchers in India. This paper attempts to study the verbal claim and actual content created by Indians’ aged 50 years and above on Facebook (Facebook, hereafter referred to as the “Social Media” or “SM”, is restricted by the Russian media regulator Roskomnadzor) using a comparative research design. The study was carried out by selecting one hundred profiles of Monthly Active Users (MAU) of Social Media (SM) qualifying the age criteria. Empirical evidence for comparison was drawn by conducting: a. guided telephonic interview to know MAU’s claimed SM usage and b. quantitative content analysis to identify MAU’s actual SM activity. The results show that the participant’s claims of their SM activity do not support their actual usage of the platform. The variables studied and compared include the ‘source’, ‘context’ and ‘features used’ to write the content. Conclusions reveal the dilemmas and SNS usage related preferences of older age groups in India. The study highlights the need and scope for training the older generation(s) about using SNS. Such vocational training would help them conveniently adopt and use networked technologies for communication and recreational purposes.

RUDN Journal of Studies in Literature and Journalism. 2022;27(2):425-435
pages 425-435 views

America’s Union Carbide Corporation and Bhopal Disaster: Study in the Light of Public Relations Before and After the Incidence

Patel K., Binjola H.


This study tries to understand the Bhopal disaster (aka Bhopal Gas Tragedy) in the light of public relation and the role played by Union Carbide Corporation in the Bhopal disaster which resulted in the death of over 3 000 people and 15 000 were injured during the disaster. This case shocked the entire nation and nobody had ever imagined that an industrial accident could be that deadly and venomous. The researcher is trying to understand the incidence from the perspective of public relations and how Union Carbide played its role in the light of public relations. This study is trying to understand that how Union Carbide would have made a difference to its image if they would have responsibly used public relations for its better international image and social responsibility in India. Bhopal Gas Tragedy was an important case for understanding crisis and this case also highlighted that how PR could have been used for handling the situation and for managing relations with people. This case was the talk of the town as thousands were affected and it was a national casualty. This case raised many issues pertaining to Management and people and it also underlined that improved management could have led to better treatment of the case.

RUDN Journal of Studies in Literature and Journalism. 2022;27(2):436-446
pages 436-446 views


Book Review: Golubkov, M.M. (2021). What’s the Sense of the Russian Literature? From the Notes of the University Philologist. Moscow: Prometheus. 344 p. (In Russ.)

Sokolov B.V.



RUDN Journal of Studies in Literature and Journalism. 2022;27(2):447-451
pages 447-451 views

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