Classification – name: Literary studies
Author: Nataliya A. Drovaleva
Pages: 116-127
Publisher: A.M. Gorky Institute of World Literature of the Russian Academy of Sciences (IWL RAS Publ.)
Rights – description: Creative Commons Attribution-NoDerivatives 4.0 (СС BY-ND)
Rights – URL:
Language of the publication: Russian
Type of document: Research Article
Collection: F.M. Dostoevsky in Literary and Archival Sources of the Late 19th — the First Third of the 20th Century
Year of publication: 2021
Place of publication: Moscow


Nataliya A. Drovaleva. V.Ya. Bryusov as a Scholar of Dostoyevsky: an Unfulfilled Intention

About the author:

Nataliya A. Drovaleva, PhD in Philology, Senior Researcher, A.M. Gorky Institute of World Literature of the Russian Academy of Science.

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V.Ya. Bryusov, unlike other eminent literators of the late 19th — early 20th centuries (D.S. Merezhkovsky, A. Bely, etc.), never wrote a separate publication on Dostoyevsky, however it is known that he was preparing a book on an entire corpus of the writer’s literary works. This article presents a plan of his monographic research along with the introductory notes that outline the scope and the general idea of Bryusov’s intention. Dostoyevsky’s novels become an experimental field for setting the goals of scholarly criticism and preparing a classification of his characters based on the notable «ideas» of the writer’s work and the achievements of psychopathography of the time. As the foundation for his classification Bryusov uses masculine and feminine types which, in turn, are grouped into subtypes (Bryusov provides examples from Dostoyevsky’s novels and stories for each type). This analysis of the writer’s texts was supposed to result in a scholarly work founded on a scientific basis, but in the end Bryusov did not fulfill his intentions. It is traditionally thought that the typology of Dostoyevsky’s characters was created in the 1920s, however Bryusov’s diligent work sheds some light on the existence of earlier attempts at creating it.

Keywords: V.Ya. Bryusov, F.M. Dostoevskii, literary criticism, types of characters, book project, psychopathography.