All posts by Denis Zhernokleyev

Memory Eternal to Fr. Matthew Baker


One of the main intellectual forces behind the Florovsky Society, Fr. Matthew Baker, died in a tragic car accident during last-night’s snowstorm. He was driving home from church with his children. Although the kids are uninjured, he leaves behind his wife and six small children. Fr. Matthew had dedicated his life to the Church, and had only just received a salaried position after 12+ years of living as a seminarian and student. His wife and 6 children need us.



(Or Gasparov’s case against Bakhtin)

Friday, March 6th, 10 AM-NOON, East Pyne 245

Discussions of literary scholarship often reveal anxieties over the scientific validity of methods used in the field, as well as the ethical import of their findings. Such questions come into particularly stark relief in the recent polemic of the late Russian philologist Mikhail Gasparov against the scholarly legacy of Mikhail Bakhtin. By emphasizing the optimistic values of dialogue and co-creativity with the authors of great literature, Bakhtin offers an appealing alternative to the drab view of literary studies as a hermetic discipline, and his work has exerted a powerful influence on scholars of literature and culture across much of the world. For his part, Gasparov distinguished himself as one of the great Russian literary scholars of the twentieth century, and his writings on methodology offer not only a searing criticism of Bakhtin, but an impassioned defense of a traditional philological approach that challenges many current orthodoxies of U.S. universities (e.g. interdisciplinarity).

This seminar led by Caryl Emerson and Michael Wachtel will take this conflict between two giants of Russian literary scholarship as a point of departure for examining larger questions of the tasks of the literary scholar and the future of the field. To attend the seminar. please RSVP to Participants will be asked to read a few short articles in preparation.gasparov, c bakhtin - young

Bakhtin, the Graced Virtues, and the Broken Body

Lecture and conversation with Caryl Emerson, Thursday, March 5th, 4:30 PM, East Pyne 245

Professor Emerson will lead a structured discussion of the role played in Bakhtin’s thought by concepts derived from Russian religious discourse (spirit, soul, incarnation, inter-permeability, communion, apophatic modesty, Passion-suffering and the problem of physical pain).  How do the graced virtues (faith, hope, and love) inform Bakhtin’s more secularized categories of dialogue, carnival openness, and the grotesque, “orificed” or broken body?

FINAL 2015 Florovsky Poster NO CROPS - for the website-page-001