About the author:
Ekaterina G. Paderina, DSc in Philology, Leading Research Fellow, A.M. Gorky Institute of World Literature of the Russian Academy of Sciences, Povarskaya 25 a, 121069 Moscow, Russia.
ORCID ID: https://orcid.org/0000-0002-8970-7269
The article is devoted to the initial stage of the text history of the “Leaving the Theater”. Gogol made his first notes for the future play in the period between the premiere of “The Government Inspector”, which took place on April 19, 1836, and his departure abroad in early days of June of the same year. These notes were first published by N.S. Tikhonravov in 1889. In the textual description Tikhonravov emphasized the fragmentary nature of the drafts, the signs of inconsistency to the dramatic genre, and only partial use of drafts by the author in the preparation of the completed play of 1842. In the Soviet academic edition (1949) N.I. Mordovchenko set a hypothesis about a full-fledged play roughly sketched by Gogol that spring, which should be considered as the “first edition” of the “Leaving the Theater”. This point of view has become traditional. But a textual study of the notes during the preparation of the latest academic edition of the Complete Works of Gogol in 23 vols. (IWL RAS) confirms the point of Tikhonravov. The article provides a detailed analysis of the reasons of both textologists and presents additional arguments for the concept of Tikhonravov. The author of the article pays special attention to the generic and genre characteristics of the drafts and the concept of “edition of a dramatic text”.