Friday, 31 March 2023 to Sunday, 2 April 2023

Russian Writers as Public Intellectuals: Liudmila Ulitskaya and Boris Akunin.

Fri31  Mar12:45pm(15 mins)
James Watt South Room 375
Dr Alexandra Smith


Alexandra Smith1
1 University of Edinburgh, UK


The paper will examine several statements of Ulitskaya and Akunin on contemporary Russian culture, history, national identity, and European culture found in their interviews, lectures and social media talks since 2014. Today Ulitskaya is seen as the most significant Russian author “bringing together intellectual and ordinary readers” (Skomp,Elizabeth A.,and Benjamin M.Sutcliffe.Ludmila Ulitskaya and the Art of Tolerance. U of Wisconsin Press, 2015, 3.) Similarly, Akunin is perceived as one of the most successful postmodernist writers and cultural historians whose detective novels can be described as an attempt at deconstructing of post-Soviet nostalgia. By bringing together Akunin’s and Ulitskaya’s vision of Russian contemporary culture and identity, the paper will analyse their critique of the geopolitics inherited from  the Soviet Empire and their new strategy of self-representation as public intellectuals.