Co-authored by Russian, Ukrainian, and American critics, Dialogues/Dialogi is the first fully collaborative and comparative study of American and (ex)Soviet women writers. Truly a dialogue, the book juxtaposes fiction by American and Soviet women from the 1960s to the present to reveal their similarities and differences and to show how questions of gender, race, and ethnicity are enacted in the societies and psyches each text represents. Begun in the early days of glasnost and completed in 1992, the book conveys the spirit and excitement of an unprecedented critical conversation conducted during a time of historic transformation.
Dialogues/Dialogi pairs stories by Tillie Olsen, Toni Cade Bambara, Jayne Anne Phillips, and Leslie Marmon Silko (reprinted here in full) with Russian stories by I. Grekova, Liudmila Petrushevskaya, Elena Makarova, and Anna Nerkagi, many of them appearing here for the first time in English. Exquisite in their stylistic and thematic variety, suggestive of the range of women's experience and fiction in both countries, each story is the subject of paired interpretive essays by an American and an (ex)Soviet critic from among the book's authors.
A colloquy of diverse voices speaking together in multiple, mutually illuminating exchanges, Dialogues/Dialogi testifies to the possibility of evolving relationships among women across borders once considered impassable.
Susan Hardy Aiken is Professor of English at the University of Arizona. Adele Barker is Associate Professor of Slavic Languages and Literature at the University of Washington, Seattle. Maya Koreneva is a scholar at the A. M. Gorky Institute of World Literature in Moscow. Ekaterina Stetsenko is a scholar at the A. M. Gorky Institute of World Literature in Moscow.
Acknowledgments ix Preface xiii Notes on Transliteration and Editing xix Beginnings 1 1 1. Ladies Hairdresser / Grekova 43 Tell me a Riddle / Tillie Olsen 88 Stages of Dissent: Olsen, Grekova, and the Politics of Creativity / Susan Hardy Aiken 120 Revolutions from Within / Ekaterina Stetsenko 141 Dialogue 158 2 Witchbird / Toni Cade Bambara 163 That Kind of Girl / Liudmila Petrushevskaia 178 Children of the Sixties / Maya Koreneva 191 Telling the Other('s) Story, or, the Blues in Two languages / Susan Hardy Aiken 206 Dialogue 224 3 Home / Jayne Anne Phillips 229 Needlefish / Elena Makarova 242 The World of Our Mothers / Adele Marie Barker 253 Hopes and Nightmares of the Young / Maya Koreneva 266 Dialogue 279 4 Aniko of the Nogo Tribe / Anna Nerkagi 285 Storyteller / Leslie Marmon SIlko 312 Retelling the Legends / Ekaterino Stetsenko 327 Crossings / Adele Marie Barker 340 Dialogue 354 Afterword: Histories and Fictions 357 Selected Bibliography 393 Index 409