A History of Women's Writing in Russia

By Adele Marie Barker; Jehanne M. Gheith | Go to book overview

NOTES
1
Partly a reaction to Russian Realism, Symbolism was a complex and evolving artistic movement, taking place in Russia in the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries. In Symbolism, writers attempted to access the world beyond through language and the reconfiguration of traditional signs.
2
This holds true for Avril Pyman's History of Russian Symbolism (New York, 1994) as well as Ronald E. Peterson's History of Russian Symbolism (Philadelphia, 1993). Paradoxically, the criticism of Inokentii Annenskii and Valerii Briusov on Russian poetry offers a much more balanced discussion of the contribution of women poets to Russian Modernism. See I. Annenskii, “O sovremennom lirizme. One, ” Apollon 3 (December 1909), 5–29 and V. Briusov, “Zhenshchiny poety, ” SS, vol. VI (Moscow, 1975), 318–23.
3
See Michel Foucault, “What Is an Author?” in David Lodge (ed.), Modern Criticism and Theory: A Reader, (New York, 1988), 197–210.
4
Quoted in Avril Pyman, The Life of Aleksandr Blok, vol. I: The Distant Thunder 1880–1908 (New York, 1979), 170.
5
Khodasevich's focus in this essay is on the Symbolist method of blurring the boundaries between life and art known as zhiznetvorchestvo or “life-creation, ” not on the role of women within Symbolist circles. Nonetheless, Ifind it highly significant that he upholds the woman writer Nina Petrovskaia as the consummate example of this fatal tendency to confuse life and art, proclaiming that “more artfully and decisively than others she created 'a narrative poem out of her very life'” (Nekropol'. Vospominaniia, Paris, 1976, 9).
6
See Joan Delaney Grossman, “Valery Briusov and Nina Petrovskaia: Clashing Models of Life in Art” in Irina Paperno and Joan Delaney Grossman (eds.), Creating Life: The Aesthetic Utopia of Russian Modernism (Stanford, 1994), 122–50.
7
This lecture has been reprinted in Russkii eros ili filosofiia liubvi v Rossii (Moscow, 1991), 208–14.
8
Olga Matich has treated this phenomenon extensively in her essay, “The Symbolist Meaning of Love: Theory and Practice” in Paperno and Grossman, Creating Life, 24–50.
9
As N. A. Petrovskii points out in Slovar' russkikh lichnykh imen (Moscow, 1966), 159, the Russian name Mirra is actually derived from the Greek word myrrine meaning 'myrtle' (or mirt in Russian).
10
. Mirra Lokhvitskaia, Tainykh strun sverkaiushchee pen'e: Izbrannye stikhotvoreniia (Moscow, 1994), 30.
12
For a discussion of the connections between the poetry of Lokhvitskaia and Akhmatova, see Christine D. Tomei's essay “Mirra Loxvickaja and Anna Axmatova: Influence in the Evolution of the Modern Female Lyric Voice” in Nina Efimov, Christine D. Tomei, and Richard Chapple (eds.), Critical Essays on the Prose and Poetry of Modern Slavic Women (Lewiston, NY, 1998), 135–60.

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