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  1. "Perepisatʹ evrei͡a--" : tema evreĭskoĭ assimili͡at͡sii v literature Rossiĭskoĭ imperii (1870-1880 gg.)

    Safran, Gabriella, 1967-
    Sankt-Peterburg : Akademicheskiĭ proekt, 2004.

  2. Wandering soul : the Dybbuk's creator, S. An-Sky

    Safran, Gabriella, 1967-
    Cambridge, Mass. : Harvard University Press, 2010.

    The man who would become S. An-sky - ethnographer, war correspondent, author of the best-known Yiddish play, "The Dybbuk" - was born Shloyme-Zanvl Rappoport in 1863, in Russia's Pale of Settlement. His journey from the streets of Vitebsk to the center of modern Yiddish and Hebrew theater, by way of St. Petersburg, Paris, and war-torn Austria-Hungry, was both extraordinary and in some ways typical: Marc Chagall, another child of Vitebsk, would make a similar transit a generation later. Like Chagall, An-sky was loyal to multiple, conflicting Jewish, Russian, and European identities. And like Chagall, An-sky made his physical and cultural transience manifest as he drew on Jewish folk culture to create art that defied nationality. Leaving Vitebsk at seventeen, An-sky forged a number of apparently contradictory paths. A witness to peasant poverty, pogroms, and war, he tried to rescue the vestiges of disappearing communities even while fighting for reform. A loner addicted to reinventing himself - at times a Russian laborer, a radical orator, a Jewish activist, an ethnographer of Hasidism, a wartime relief worker - An-sky saw himself as a savior of the people's culture and its artifacts. What united the disparate strands of his life was his eagerness to speak to and for as many people as possible, regardless of their language or national origin. In this first full-length biography in English, Gabriella Safran, using Russian, Yiddish, Hebrew, and French sources, recreates this neglected protean figure who, with his passions, struggles, and art, anticipated the complicated identities of the European Jews who would follow him.

    Online EBSCO University Press

  3. Recording Russia : trying to listen in the nineteenth century

    Safran, Gabriella, 1967-
    Ithaca [New York] : Cornell University Press, 2022

    "Nineteenth-century Russian writers including Dahl, Turgenev, and Dostoevsky, and travelers including Custine and Haxthausen, describe scenes where they and their characters listen to, record, and borrow other people's words. Drawing on linguistic anthropology and media studies, this book explores how these scenes index identities, reference communication technology, and change over time" --Recording Russia examines scenes of listening to "the people" across a variety of texts by Russian writers and European travelers to Russia. Gabriella Safran challenges readings of these works that essentialize Russia as a singular place where communication between the classes is consistently fraught, arguing instead that, as in the West, the sense of separation or connection between intellectuals and those they interviewed or observed is as much about technology and performance as politics and emotions. Nineteenth-century writers belonged to a distinctive media generation using new communication technologies-not bells, but mechanically produced paper, cataloguing systems, telegraphy, and stenography. Russian writers and European observers of Russia in this era described themselves and their characters as trying hard to listen to and record the laboring and emerging middle classes. They depicted scenes of listening as contests where one listener bests another; at times the contest is between two sides of the same person. They sometimes described Russia as an ideal testing ground for listening because of its extreme cold and silence. As the mid-century generation witnessed the social changes of the 1860s and 1870s, their listening scenes revealed increasing skepticism about the idea that anyone could accurately identify or record the unadulterated "voice of the people." Bringing together intellectual history and literary analysis and drawing on ideas from linguistic anthropology and sound and media studies, Recording Russia looks at how writers, folklorists, and linguists such as Turgenev, Dostoevsky, and Vladimir Dahl, as well as foreign visitors, thought about the possibilities and meanings of listening to and repeating other people's words.


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