Russian Postmodernism: New Perspectives on Post-Soviet Culture

By Mikhail Epstein; Alexander Genis et al. | Go to book overview

APPENDIX
Who's Who in Russian Postmodernism

Compiled by Mikhail Epsteinand Alexander Genis

This brief reference dictionary does not claim to be either exhaustive or definitive in its selection of entries: it is up to future generations of critics to determine the exact criteria by which the postmodern aesthetic will be defined. Our goal was rather to encompass as wide variety of writers--mostly poets, novelists and critics, but also some representative philosophers, artists, and film directors--who actively participated in Russian intellectual life of the fourth quarter of the twentieth century and whose creativity exhibited features typically associated with postmodern aesthetics: stylistic eclecticism, intertextualism and the citational mode, the interplay of signifiers, irony, parody, pastiche, and (self-) deconstruction of artistic discourse. We were particularly interested in those figures who contributed to the development of a Russian post-totalitarian literature, but who did not belong either to the official (socialist realism), dissident, traditionalist (critical realism, village prose), or purely avant-garde culture (derived from the avant-garde of the beginning of the twentieth century).1

This dictionary presents approximately one hundred seventy authors, of which the overwhelming majority have never before appeared in a reference work of this kind. In several cases, we included entries on prominent authors who are well-represented in other dictionaries, such as Vasily Aksyonov or Yury Lotman: here,

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