19C RLT: Nineteenth-Century Russian Literature in Translation

19C RLT: Nineteenth-Century Russian Literature in Translation

Brian Kim

 Assistant Professor, Russian and East European Studies


Kevin Platt

 Edmund J. and Louise W. Kahn Term Professor in the Humanities


Hilah Kohen (Penn)
Olga Nechaeva (Penn)
J.D. Porter (Penn)
Helen Stuhr-Rommereim (Swarthmore)

Project Start Date: 
September, 2020

This project investigates the role of translation in nineteenth-century Russian literature’s rise to prominence in world literature as a case study in the processes whereby a nationally or linguistically defined literature may achieve circulation and recognition on a global level. We seek to understand the ways in which the canon of Russian literature was conceptualized and composed differently in different translated contexts; to query Pascale Casanova’s claim that Paris was the most important “capital” of the “World Republic of Letters”; and to determine which other locales played a significant role in the process of a “peripheral” literature’s incorporation into “world literature” in the space of less than a century.

19C RLT currently tracks book publications of works by Pushkin, Gogol, Turgenev, Tolstoy, and Dostoevsky into English, French, and German from the death of Pushkin in 1837 to the outbreak of the Great War in 1914, comprising a growing database as well as maps, graphs, and other visualizations of the data. Future phases are planned to add more authors and expand the scope to include other global contexts in which Russian literature became an important translated literature in the twentieth century and beyond.

Scott Bartling
Andrew Basile
Rachel Dennis
Emily Despinoy
Catherine Fantuzzo
Aisha Garaeva
Ekaterina Kokovikhina
Sergey Miroshkin
Jan Nowak
Lydia Shaw
Eugenia Ulanova