Mihaychuk Fellows for 2013-2014

Yuliya Ladygina

Williams College, Assistant Professor

Title of Research:

“Narrating the Self in the Mass Age: Olha Kobylianska in the Whirlpool of the European Fin-de-Siècle and Its Aftermath, 1882-1942” 

Abstract:

Ladygina plans to investigate the complex evolution and dialogical nature of the multiplicity of socio-political discourses – particularly feminism, populism, socialism, Nietzscheanism, elitism, Marxism, Bolshevism, nationalism, and Fascism – in Olha Kobylianska’s writings. Her research will combine a socio-historical contextualization of Kobylianska’s life and work with close readings of her major fictional texts. Building upon contemporary literary and social theories – in particular, works by Bakhtin, Hroch, and Hermans – she will argue that the individual case of Kobylianska's complex dialogue with the diverse socio-cultural and political movements that sprang up in Europe at the turn of the 20th century is representative of her socio-historical milieu. By placing Kobylianska’s works within the matrix of the European fin-de-siècle, Ladygina will not only re-define her engagement with the political, social, artistic, and philosophical contexts of her times, but also provide insight into the struggle of the fin-de-siècle generation of European intellectuals to articulate and assert an individual voice vis-à-vis the multiplicity of mass ideologies of their time. Among the broader theoretical questions Ladygina seeks to answer is what role narrative structures and modalities play in the formation and articulation of an individual voice like Kobylianska’s.

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