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Krivonos V. S. Saratov’s plot in Yu. N. Chumakov’s letters. Izvestiya of Saratov University. Philology. Journalism, 2022, vol. 22, iss. 4, pp. 467-470. DOI:

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Saratov’s plot in Yu. N. Chumakov’s letters

The article discusses the place of Saratov-based plot in Yu. N. Chumakov’s letters addressed to the author of the article. The subject of discussion in the correspondence is the defense of Yu. N. Chumakov’s dissertation at Saratov University in 1970 and its role in his scientifi c biography. The defense of the dissertation with Yu. M. Lotman as the fi rst opponent became the key event of the Saratov plot and its climax. Having singled out fragments from the correspondence related to the plot of Saratov, the author seeks to explain the direction of the ensuing epistolary dialogue, why the defense of the dissertation was perceived by Yu. N. Chumakov as a more than signifi cant event for him, especially in the context of his dramatic biography. The author proves that the defense was an explosion of the linear sequence of the text of life, which dramatically changed the fate of the scientist. The desire to talk in detail about the defense, to fi nd out what impression it made, and to look at what was happening on that memorable day for him through the eyes of the addressee of the letter, betrayed the desire to read and interpret his fate again and again. Particular attention is paid in the correspondence to the personalities of such outstanding philologists, professors of Saratov University as A. P. Skaftymov and E. I. Pokusaev. Yu. N. Chumakov was not A. P. Skaftymov’s student and was not familiar with him, but specifi cally noted the acquisition and subsequent development of the principles of a scientifi c approach to the work, set out in his theoretical article in 1923. About the personality of E. I. Pokusaev, his supervisor, and the history of the relationship with him, Yu. N. Chumakov wrote in great detail. Having told about the role of E. I. Pokusaev, who supported the dissertation at the defense, and having outlined his complex, large and humanly attractive personality, Yu.N. Chumakov completes the plot of Saratov, which was very meaningful for him, primarily for self-understanding of his scientifi c path.


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