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Welcome aboard!

This site is dedicated to Russian Literature as a philosophy. The main objective of my site is inviting for conversation anyone who is amazed by Russian Literature and keen on sharing his or her point of view within the framework of the discussions proposed below. This means exchanging ideas and hey, who knows, may be even developing joint projects on line but not only... Sure, students are also very welcome...

Let’s start from the formal introduction… I'm Professor of philosophy, PhD. Currently working for the Institute of Sociology of Russian Academy of Science. My professional interest could be formulated like ‘Russian Writer as an analyst of Russian Culture’. Hopefully it does not sound way too complex and foggy. We shall talk more about later on… I have been studying Russian Literature of XIX-XX-XXI centuries as a Philosophy for more then 20 years and still enjoy it. Both in terms of research and teaching... The author of five books and more then 100 papers on theory and methodology of analysis of Russian Classics and Modern Literature. My awards (Please, do not take those too seriously, but let’s accomplish my formal introduction…) :

2002 Winner of the award "Silver Asyk" granted by Khazakhstan association "Gold Age" and Literature and cultural journal "Tamyr" for a series of articles on Russian and Khazakh literature

1994 Winner of the Central Europe University International Contest on Philosophy for the methodology of analysis of the Russian society via the logic of the Russian Literature. GRANT № 94ХCEUХRSS (Central European University, Soros Fund)

Eighties Mongolian and Bulgarian medals for lecturing and organisational activities

1978 Honor medal of the University of People's Friendship for lecturing

Research interests (details):
  • Literature: nineteenth, twentieth and twenty first centuries including Pushkin, Lermontov, Gogol, Goncharov, Turgenev, Tolstoj, Dostoevskij, Chekhov and Bulgakov as well as T. Tolstaya, V. Sorokin, V. Pelevin and V. Erofeev.
  • Methodology of analysis via interface between culture (general) and society (particular) or as I call this “sphere in between”

List of subjects proposed to discuss:


Subject of study - Russian culture in vision and interpretation by Russian Writers; Russian Writer as an analyst of the Russian culture. XIX century: Pushkin, Lermontov, Gogol, Goncharov, L. Tolstoy, Dostoevsky. XX century: Chekhov, Bulgakov. XXI century: Tolstaya, Sorokin, Pelevin, Erofeev. Literature and society. "Social" literature. Russian Literature as social and cultural investigation of human reality. Russian Literature as a social philosophy. Works of Russian Writers - cultural wealth of Russia, a way of Russian man to go out of historically formed cultural frames and a search for an adequate measure of this go out. The central theme of Russian Literature - change of the type of the Russian culture, the central problem - personality and social pathology in Russia. Criticism of archaism of the Russian culture and search for a democratic (liberal) alternative. Russian Writers: civil mission and sacrificing themselves (examples from works of art and history of literature).

Methodology of study: social and cultural analysis. Three levels of analysis: logic of development of culture/society (for example, Russia of Pushkin epoch) from the viewpoint of a modern analyst (for example, a pushkinist), logic of analysis of culture/society (for example, Russia of Pushkin epoch) by a writer (for example, by Pushkin) from the viewpoint of a modern analyst (for example, a pushkinist), logic of analysis of thinking of a writer (for example, thinking of Puskin) by a modern analyst (for example, by a pushkinist). Gravitation of the levels to identity via subjectivity of an analyst. Method of dual oppositions. Culture as a transition. Interpenetration, contradiction and menace of split between culture and Society. The conditional "sphere in-between" to be stressed in order to understand culture and Society via each other. Dynamics of the society in the "sphere in between" as overcoming of duality (dualism) or as "sticking" in a deadlock. Inversive "pendulum" between poles of a dual opposition as a logic of deadlock social and cultural dynamics. Search of middle, mediation ("media" - lat. "middle") as a search of new quality, a logic of development. Criticism of archaism of culture - lack of abiluty (incapability) to change itself, to look for mediation and consequently to adopt moral decisions. "Beast" of Novikov, "society, cursed by God" of Fonvisin, "parody" on man, "invalid in love" of Pushkin; "moral cripple", "unnecessary man" of Lermontov; man "neither one thing nor the other", "dead souls" of Gogol; "freaks" of Goncharov; "unfinished creature" of Turgenev; "little man" and "demons" of Dostoevsky to be understood via karamasovism, anguish; man uncapable to live of Chekhov; "sharikovism" of Bulgakov; "golubchiki" and "pererozhdentsy" of Tolstaya; "dungproducer" and "dungballpusher" of Pelevin; "stuck clod" of Erofeev. Criticism of culture not as its total destruction, but as a search for a new measure of its comprehention, an alternative. Search of alternative via capacity of man to change himself, to be a person and on this basis to adopt moral decisions: Cherkeshenka, Tatiana, Motsart, Valsingam, Samozvanets, Tazit, Prorok, Poet of Pushkin; Demon, Prorok, Poet of Lermontov; Jesus, Laugh of Gogol; Shtolts, Olga, Vera, Tushin of Goncharov; Solomin of Turgenev; Voland, master, Margarita, professor Preobrazhensky of Bulgakov; Lisa-oboroten (Fox-werewolf) of Pelevin; Benedict of Tolstaya. Humanisation of culture via capacity of man to form himself as a person (Analyses of works of writers).

A. S. Pushkin. Analysis of works. Criticism of arkhaism of culture ("parody" on man, "invalid" in love), search for an alternative. Transition from enlightenment (XVIII century - Krilov, Fonvisin) to analysis of human reality via sense of person. Thinking by meanings. Logic of dual oppositions, for example, "mortality - immortality", "truth - deception", "sense - senselessness", "hapiness - misfortune" and others. Love and death as measures of capacity to be a person. Search of new sense of divinity in capacity of a person to search new. Synthesis of divine and profane in capacity of a person to create.

M. Y. Lermontov. Analysis of works. Criticism of cultural arkhaism: theomachism of Lermontov. Logic of challenge to God: "You are to blame". The ruin of the attempt of Russian man to change himself (logic of image of Pechorin) and the result of this ruin for the Russian culture ("Duma", "Prorok"). Search of an alternative: search of truth - in merging wih nature, joining God, searching justice, in capacity to be a poet and person. Search of new sense of divinity. Love as synthesis of transcendent and immanent in personal. Capacity to love as a basis for renewal of the essense of human and forming person. Image of Demon. Russian Literature of XXI сentury: Lermontov renessaince in analysis of Russian culture.

N. V. Gogol. Analysis of works. Criticism of cultural arkhaism: analysis of man "neither one thing nor the other", "dead souls" and the basic question of Russian culture. Search of an alternative: "Vybrannye mesta iz perepiski s druziami", specific of religiousness of Gogol, Jesus-teacher, Jesus-businessman, Jesus-love. Protection of right of individual search for God. Laughter as a way to search sense of person. Split between salvation of his soul via writing creature (he studied it from Jesus-analyst of souls) and refusal from writing (for salvation of his soul in the heaven). Division of Gogol between God (sense of generous) and Jesus (sense of particular, creative), tragedy of his death. Popullist sense of thestory of "Shinel". Russian literature of XXI century - the end of the epoch of "shinelemania".

I. A. Goncharov. Analysis of works. Criticism of cultural arkhaism: analysis of "young ignoramus", "freaks" - an artist who cannot draw, a lover who demands all from woman and cannot serve at her, a revolutionary who ruins life for the sake of "huge future", a man who doesn't want to clash with life and prefer living his life on a sofa. Search of an alternative: sense of the call of german Shtolts to russian Oblomov: "Get out of this mire!". Love as an alternative. Business-like style of life as an alternative. An expirience of social and cultural reconstruction of Goncharov's historiosophy..

I. S. Turgenev. Analysis of works. Works of Turgenev as a witness of the catastrophy of the generation of the 40-50-th years of the XIX-th century. Criticism of cultural arkhaism: analysis of uneffective, splitted, outdated nobility (gentry) and of a pathologically splitted generation of new people and revolutionaries. Russian people as a "sleepyhead" and "beast of prey". Russia doesn't need revolution. Search of an alternative. Sense of person. Sense of love. Turgenev-style woman. Search of a new sense of divine: "I want truth, not salvation". Social program of Turgenev: it's necessary to develop basis for democratic relations. Solomin as an alternative

L. N. Tolstoy. Analysis of works. Discrepancy of crutucism of arkhaism and search for an alternative: antichurch rebellion and godseeking, criticism of the formed culture, the ideal of joining nature, adoption of "simple life", populism. Two ways of interpretation of sense of love: love as God and love as between man and woman ("War and Peace"). Catastrophy of love as a catastrophy of freedom in Russia and a result of vagueness of ways of development of person ("Anna Karenina"). Tolstoy and the Russian revolution. Godseeking Tolstoy's ideas in works of modern writers - Pelevin, Erofeev and T. Tolstaya.

F. M. Dostoevsky. Analysis of works. Criticism of cultural arkhaism as analysis of cultural specifics of Russia: "little man", underground man, steretypes of localism, dictator and slave, inversion logic of thinking, mythological consciousness, division of people in "we" and "they", inferiority comlex, complexes of offence, revenge, violance, destruction and revolution. "Little man" versus great society. Fenomenon of "sticking" of the Russian culture. Search of alternative: love and belief as ways of resolving internal contradictions.

A. P. Chekhov. Analysis of works. Criticism of cultural arkhaism: man incapable of adopting any decision and therefore living. Transition from criticism of reasons of arkhaism of the Russian culture (Pushkin, Lermontov, Dostoevsky) to criticism of incapability of russian man to understand reasons of his incapability to undestand sense of arkhaism. Absolute fatalism of Chekhov and "nonfatal" fatalism of Lermontov. Non-alternative way of thinking of Chekhov.

M. A. Bulgakov. Analysis of works. Criticism of cultural arkhaism and search of an alternative. Personality and social pathology - the central problem of creature. Master and Margaret - symbols of creativity and love in a society that is capable neither of creative work nor love. Personality and problem of religion and moral. Poet Ivan as a symbol of grey creation. Logic of conflict between communitarianism (culture) and personality in the "Dog's heart". Voland as a carrier of godman-like. Call for change of Russian culture. Non-political liberalism of Bulgakov's creature.

Modern Russian Literature

V. Pelevin. Analysis of works. Novels of "Numbers", "Life of insects", "Chapaev and Emptiness", "Holy book of werewolf", stories of "Ukhriab", "Problem of werewolf in the Middle area", "Weapon of retribution" and others. Criticism of arkhaism of the Russian people, the Russian culture, the Russian society, the Russian interpretation of God and the Russian moral. Search of an alternative: escaping from the Russian culture... to the Russian culture. Is the alternative in misticism or in modernisation of capacities of man? Postmodernism and criticism of postmodernism. Freidism. Criticism of cultural arkhaism. Non-political liberalism of Pelevin.

T. Tolstaya. Analysis of the novel of "Kys". Criticism of the people. Arkhaisation of the Russian culture in the period of the soviet power and in the 90-ths of the XX-th century. Fright and selfdestruction as the essense of the Russian culture. Incapability of Russian man to understand the essense of development of culture. Benedict as a symbol of capacity of Russian man to reinterpret his cultural foundations and a symbol of that Russian man is at the very beginning of its cultural development. The central idea of the search of an alternative: social uneffectiveness of the Russian liberalism but Russia has no other way of development except liberal idea.

V. Erofeev. Analysis of the novel of "Enciclopediya russkoi dushi". A stuck culture. Erofeev and Dostoevsky. Erofeev and God. Criticism of the people. The Russians are guilty of being Russians, Russia is guilty of being Russia. Lermontov renessaince in analysis of the Russian culture. Sense of the Pushkin-Lermontov alternative in the Russian culture.

V. Sorokin. The novels of "Norma", "Put Bro", "Goluboe salo". Scenario of the opera of "Deti of Rosental". Stories. Analysis of biological nature of man. Criticism of life as it is arranged in Russia and as it is. Ordinary "oursism". Escape from complication of life. World revolution in interpretation of Sorokin.