The Theme of Female Loneliness in the Writings of Lyudmila Petrushevskaya and Can Xue

Cover Page

Cite item


The issue of female loneliness is observed in many works by Russian and Chinese women writers of the XX-XXI centuries. Attention to this problem reflects the deep concern of women authors for the fate of women. Lyudmila Petrushevskaya and Can Xue are representatives of Russian and Chinese women’s literature of the late 20th and early 21st centuries. Despite the fact that the writings of Petrushevskaya and Can Xue belong to different cultural traditions and were created within the different artistic and aesthetic frameworks, attention to the fate of women, the dark sides of life and an attempt to rethink modern life values bring them together. This paper compares and contrasts the writings of Petrushevskaya and Can Xue on the subject of loneliness. The essence and causes of loneliness are revealed. Based on a thorough analysis of their works, it is concluded that each of them approaches this issue from different seemingly opposing perspectives. Petrushevskaya pays attention to the daily life, in her works she depicts the individual loneliness of women through the image of a terrible but entirely real life. While Can Xue is interested in existential being of all mankind, she reveals the inner emptiness of human existence through various metaphors and illusions.

About the authors

Tian Fang

Peoples’ Friendship University of Russia

Author for correspondence.
ORCID iD: 0000-0002-3815-7084

Postgraduate student, Department of Russian and Foreign Literature

6, Miklukho-Maklaya st., Moscow, 117198, Russian Federation

Anna V. Zhuchkova

Peoples’ Friendship University of Russia

ORCID iD: 0000-0002-6948-4651

Ph.D in Philology, Associate Professor, Department of Russian and Foreign Literature

6, Miklukho-Maklaya st., Moscow, 117198, Russian Federation


  1. Baudrillard, J. 2015. Simulacra and simulation. Moscow: Postum publ. Print. (In Russ.)
  2. Krylova, S.V. 2019. Izvechnoe odinochestvo dushi: Franc Kafka i Can’ Sjuje. Kitajsko-belorusskie jazykovye, literaturnye i kul’turnye svjazi: istorija i sovremennost’: International Scientific Conference. Minsk: Belarusian State University, May 17-18. P. 191—198.
  3. Kasatkina, T.A. 1996. No strashno mne: izmenish’ oblik ty. Novyj mir 14. 13 p. Print. (In Russ.)
  4. Rykova, D.V. 2003. Duhovnye iskanija geroev maloj prozy L. Petrushevskoj. Duhovnaja zhizn’ provincii. Obrazy. Simvoly: All-Russian Scientific Conference. Ulyanovsk: Ulyanovsk State Technical University, June 19-20. P. 171—174. Print. (In Russ.)
  5. Bastrikov, A.V. 2004. Osobennosti zhenskoj kartiny mira (na materiale tekstov L. Petrushevskoj). Russkaja i sopostavitel’naja filologija: Lingvokul’turologicheskij aspekt. Kazan: Kazan State University publ. Print. (In Russ.)
  6. Kolcha, I.M. 2011. Gendernaja kartina mira (po rasskazam L. Petrushevskoj «Medeja» i M. Vellera «Razbivatel’ serdec»). Trudy molodyh uchenyh altajskogo gosudartsvennogo universiteta 8: 210—211. Print. (In Russ.)
  7. Pushkar’, G.A. 2007. Tipologija i pojetika zhenskoj prozy: gendernyj aspekt (na materiale rasskazov T. Tolstoj, L. Petrushevskoj, L. Ulickoj). Thesis of Candidate Diss. on philosophy. Stavropol. Print. (In Russ.)
  8. Jamshhikov, K. 2021. Otvaga sjurrealizma. O sovremennoj kitajskoj pisatel’nice Can’ Sjuje. Revizor. ru. Web. URL: (Date of Acess 09.10.2021) (In Russ.)
  9. Xiao Yulin. 2009. Loneliness: an analysis of Can Xue’ s writing theme. Journal of Xiangnan University 30 (3): 54—70.
  10. Toropcev, S. 1990. Perevod s kitajskogo: Can Xue. Hizhina v gorah // Azija i Afrika segodnja 12: 45—47. (In Russ.)

Copyright (c) 2022 Fang T., Zhuchkova A.V.

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International License.

This website uses cookies

You consent to our cookies if you continue to use our website.

About Cookies