Scientific section. Literary criticism

Special Features of the Portrait Genre in the Russian Literature of the 20th Century: V. P. Nekrasov’s Little Portraits

The article studies special features of the portrait genre in the Russian literature of the 20th century. Alongside traditional genre techniques in his cycle Little Portraits, V. P. Nekrasov uses his signature ones designed to reveal the individuality of the character, which allows us to talk about the genre evolution.

Russia in James Hilton’s Knight Without Armour

Against the vogue for Russia in British travel books of the 1930s, the paper brings back to light James Hilton’s novel Knight Without Armour (1933), set mainly in Russia in Revolutionary years. This entertainment novel is shown to lack the excessive political stance on Russia found in the travel genre of the period. Hilton creates a nice balance between general Western stereotypes of Russia and his individual vision, thus normalizing the reception of Russia for Western reader.

Dante’s Motives in A. P. Chekhov’s Story Student

The article focuses on studying the motives of the first canto of Inferno in A. P. Chekhov’s story Student. Possible allusions to the first canto are evident in Chekhov’s choice of the time and place of where the character experiences his spiritual drama, in the semantics and function of the locuses, and key motives highlighting the character’s path. The author assumes that Dante’s ideals might have given rise to Chekhov’s idea of the unity of life in the world.

The Image of the Garden in the Novel La Faute de l’Abbé Mouret by Emile Zola

The article focuses on the garden as a literary image based on the archetype and some mythological allusions. The structure of the garden is analyzed in detail as the novel space at variance and in connection with the naturalistic aesthetic approach.

Two Philarets: On the Special Features of the Saints’ Images in the Works by N. S. Leskov

The article attempts to study the methods of depicting saints in the texts by N. S. Leskov on the example of the images of saint bishops Philaret Drozdov and Philaret Amphiteatrov. The polarity of expressive means in the descriptions of the characters is emphasized as largely driven by the narrator’s pathos. The analysis is based not only on the material of the Trifles from the Life of Archbishops, but also of some other works.

Pushkin’s Conflict in the Prose of A. I. Solzhenitsyn

One of the defining features of Pushkin’s work was the issue of the ‘law and mercy’. The law and mercy conflict is also represented in the prose of A. I. Solzhenitsyn. In his works, Solzhenitsyn gives a distinctive interpretation of this tradition, which defines the main trend of the Russian literature not only of the 19th, but the 20th and 21st centuries as well.

Emotional Intensity in I. Brodsky’s Early Oeuvre (On the Example of 1957–1962 Poems)

The article studies content and formal aspects of emotional intensity in I. Brodsky’s early oeuvre; the techniques which would afterwards define his reserved artistic manner are identified.

The Poem by Bulat Okudzhava My Son’s Tin Soldier in the Cultural and Historic Context of the 1960s

The poem by Okudzhava is comprehended against the background of a number of texts published during the celebration of the 150th anniversary of the Patriotic War. Okudzhava’s unique stand in the situation of the historic celebration is determined, the controversy with Levitansky’s poem The Little Man is traced. It is shown how Andersen’s formula of the ‘persistent tin soldier’ is transformed in Okudzhava’s point of view. The views of Okudzhava and Samoilov on literature about the war are compared.

Functions of the Comic in Soviet Comedies on Historical Themes of the Early 1940s (Prince Napoleon by Vasily Shkvarkin and Long Long Ago by Alexander Gladkov)

The article discusses the role of the comic in the prewar historic drama on the example of Prince Napoleon by V. Shkvarkin and Long Long Ago by A. Gladkov. Shkvarkin wrote a satirical work exposing a potential adversary, and Gladkov wrote a heroic comedy glorifying the people’s valor. Historical comedies on the eve of the war instilled optimism in the audience and aroused a sense of patriotism.

The Issue of Peasantry in M. Gorky’s World View and Oeuvre

The article deals with the topic of peasantry – one of the most important topics in M. Gorky’s socio-cultural paradigm, which still presents a challenge in M. Gorky’s studies. The comprehensive coverage of the problems of ‘town and country’, the ‘peasants and revolution’ based on the biographical facts, prose, essays and the author’s correspondence of the 1920s – early 1930s, conclusively disproves the persistent claim of Gorky’s ‘dislike’ and his ‘distrustful’ attitude towards the peasant.

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