Jon Stone, “Between Little Magazine and Thick Journal: Approaches to Russian Modernist Periodicals”

Jon Stone (Assistant Professor of Russian and Russian Studies, Franklin & Marshall College)

“Between Little Magazine and Thick Journal: Approaches to Russian Modernist Periodicals”

My paper will have two intertwined goals: it will compare the differing origins, venues, and aspirations of periodical studies in Russia and in the west and it will offer a specific analysis of Trudy i dni (1912-16) meant to suggest a productive synthesis of these two perspectives.  In part this talk will engage in a discussion of comparative methodologies.  I will position contemporary work on Slavic periodicals in between a Russian-based privileging of deep archival research and empirically directed analyses and a more Anglo-American tradition of focusing on the material culture and social networks the fueled modernist magazines.  In presenting my own scholarship on Trudy i dni, I will show the relevance of negotiating between Russian and Western approaches.  My work on the journal’s responses to the crisis of Russian Symbolism is in dialogue with both Lavrov’s and Bogomolov’s studies of the history and development of Russian modernism through the prism of its journals and Morrisson’s championing the English language little magazine as a primary vehicle for the modernists to shape their nascent audience.  I will construct a genealogy of Trudy i dni that links it to American and English periodical culture of the 1910s as much as to its native nineteenth-century Russian journal tradition.  With such an amalgam of methodologies, the study of Russian periodicals can draw on well established practices to affirm its value as a scholarly and pedagogical tool.  With it, we gain insight into the establishment of pivotal cultural practices and the creation of seminal artistic works.

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