Dmitry Alexeevich Redin (ENG)

Redin photoDoctor of Historical Sciences, deputy director of research at History and Archeology Institute of Ural Branch of the Russian academy of Sciences, Head of Department of Russian history at the UralFederalUniversity, chairman of Dissertation council of historical sciences at UFU.

Graduate of Maxim Gorky Ural StateUniversity (Ekaterinburg). Specialized at the Department of History of the USSR of pre-Soviet period / Department of History of Russia under the leadership of Doctor of Historical Sciences, Professor R.G. Pihoya and Candidate of Historical Sciences, Associate professor V.I. Baidin. In 1988-1989 was an intern at the Moscow State Historical Archives Institute (now – part of the Russian State Humanitarian University) at the Department of auxiliary historical disciplines, took part in seminars of professors S.M. Kashtanov, V.B. Kobrin, A.I. Komissarenko, O.M. Medushevskaya, S.O. Schmidt.

Research interests: socio-political and economic history, history of law and government of Russia of 17th – 18th centuries, social history of management, anthropology of power, historical regionalism, source study, the phenomenon of transition from the Middle Ages to the modern age.

Leader of several research projects within the framework of the federal program, grants from the Government of the Russian Federation and RSF. Founder and head of the International Centre for Historical Russian Studies at UFU and Laboratory of Editional Archaeopraphy at the same university. Deputy chief editor of the international magazine “Quaestio Rossica”, member of the editorial board of journals “Uralskiy Istoricheskiy Vestnik”, “Vestnik Samarskogo Universiteta”, scientific almanac “Menshikovskie Chteniya”, foreign consulting member of the editorial committee of the journal “Cahiers du Monde russe”. Author of over 130 scientific publications.

volot@mail.ru

 

How Ivan Vasilievich Was Brought Up (Short Story by V. А. Sollogub “Tarantas”) and Noble Education in the Russian Literature of the First Half of the 19th Century

 Russian fiction carries a huge source study potential, which appears to be still underestimated by historians. Professional „suspicion“ to fiction can be understood: literary texts are not just subjective (which is more or less characteristic for any historical narrative), but bear a specific „poetic“ load, a creative idea, exaggeration, metaphors and other things characteristic for the literature belonging to the fiction category. Meanwhile, Russian fiction has always been significantly immersed in a topical context, to some extent rivaling or even, in certain periods, replacing journalism. This is especially characteristic of the works created by so-called “second-row writers”, the authors of a variety of “physiological sketches” and feature-stories “of real life”.

Among such works is the short story by V. А. Sollogub “Tarantas” (“The carriage”) in which the author gives a satirical, but very detailed picture of an “anti-ideal” of noble education (on the example of one of the personas of the short story, Ivan Vasilievich). The grotesque description of the education and training stages of Ivan Vasilievich, which are generally standard for a young man of the noble Russian environment of the early 19th century (French tutor, education in a boarding school, “Grand Tour” across Europe), could be attributed to the Slavophile views of Sollogub. But first, the author can not be unambiguously counted as a Slavophile (at least because he shows in no less grotesque form, albeit with a greater affection, the absolute opposite education and way of life of another character, Vasily Ivanovich, the direct antipode of Ivan Vasilievich). Secondly, a critical attitude towards the education model of Ivan Vasilievich can be found in other fictional pieces of Russian literature appeared in or referring the reader to the realities of the first half of the 19th century. These literary works belong to authors who absolutely should not be counted as Slavophiles (from Alexander Pushkin to Leo Tolstoy). Perhaps we should interpret this kind of evaluation not within the Westernism and Slavophile discourse, but using some other coordinate systems.

What was wrong for the Russian noble writers with those educational models which they had to do with in the years of their childhood and adolescence? Were these models so bad/ ineffective, or was their rejection the result of a certain intellectual “Fronde” (and what, in this case, is its historical nature)? Systematizing Sollogub’s claims towards the model criticized in his story, and involving “in the background” the descriptions taken from other literary pieces of that era, it is possible to make an attempt to reflect on these issues.


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