Upcoming Symposium: Advancing Omry Ronen's Legacy Through Russian Literary Studies


Aug 16, 2013 Bookmark and Share

Commemorate and celebrate the life, work, and legacy of Professor Omry Ronen, Department of Slavic Languages and Literatures.  Professor Ronen was a world-renowned scholar of Russian literature, whose most influential scholarship ranged across many areas:  historical and descriptive poetics, metrics, structural analysis of verse and prose, Russian Silver Age poetry, and particularly the work of Osip Mandelstam and Vladimir Nabokov.  His erudition was legendary and the energy and brilliance of his work were widely admired.  Among the many other topics that his half-dozen books and one hundred-fifty articles dealt with were Pushkin’s poetics, subtextual interpretive strategies, the poetry of the Oberiu, Vladimir Nabokov and the problems of literary multilingualism, the picaresque in Russian literature, popular fiction and science fiction, children’s literature, intersemiotic transposition in the arts, literature and cinema, and the history of Russian formalism and structuralism.  Among his ground-breaking works are An Approach to Mandel’stam (1983), The Fallacy of the Silver Age in Twentieth-Century Russian Literature (1997), The Poetics of Osip Mandel’shtam (2002), and the three published volumes of his essays, Iz goroda Enn (From the City of Ann) (2005, 2007, 2010).  Two additional volumes of his essays, one on poetics and another on Acmeism, were in preparation at the time of his death in November 2012. 

Although he worked in many areas, the symposium will focus on his legacy (and the continuation of that legacy) in three of these:  the poetry of Russia’s Silver Age, which saw the rise of three Modernist movements (Symbolism, Acmeism and Futurism) and also included the work of arguably four of the five greatest Russian poets  of the 20th century (Osip Mandelstam, Boris Pasternak, Anna Akhmatova and Marina Tsvetaeva); prosody, poetics and the semantics of verse; and the functions of intertextuality in literature, with particular reference to the work of Mandelstam and Vladimir Nabokov. 

All events will be held in the East Conference Room, 4th Floor, in the Rackham Graduate School, 915 E. Washington St., unless otherwise noted.

Friday, November 1: Schedule of Events

4:00 PM

Welcome: Herbert Eagle, Chair and Associate Professor, Slavic Languages and Literatures, University of Michigan

Keynote Address:  “Omry Ronen’s Critical Legacy”

Barry Scherr, Professor Emeritus of Russian, Provost Emeritus, Dartmouth College

5:00 PM  

Panel:  Literature of the Silver Age: 

“Mandelstam’s Greek Flute Again”

Nancy Pollak, Associate Professor of Comparative Literature and Russian, Cornell University

“Pasternak, Heine, and the Cult of the Musician”

Karen Evans-Romaine, Professor and Chair of Slavic Languages and Literatures, University of Wisconsin-Madison

Saturday, November 2: Schedule of Events

9:00 AM  

Panel:  The Silver Age, Nabokov, and Contemporary Literature

“Mapping Literary Los Angeles in Light of the Russian Silver Age”

Kelly E. Miller, Director, Teaching and Learning Services and Head of the College Library, UCLA

"Translingual Homage to Nabokov in Olga Grushin's The Dream Life of Sukhanov"

Julie Hansen, Associate Professor of Slavic Languages and Literatures and Research Fellow at the Uppsala Centre for Russian and Eurasian Studies, Uppsala University, Sweden

10:30 AM  

Panel:  Poetics and Prosody

“Charts, Graphs, and Meaning:  Reflections on Quantitative Approaches to Russian Poetry”

Michael Wachtel, Professor of Slavic Languages and Literatures, Princeton University

“Dancing Vowels:  Mandelstam in the Mouth”

Olga Peters Hasty, Professor of Slavic Languages and Literatures, Princeton University

“Zhirmunsky’s Critique of Eikhenbaum’s Melodika stikha (1922)”

Timothy Sergay, Associate Professor of Russian, University of Albany-SUNY

“Prosody in Hebrew and Yiddish:  Translations of Pushkin’s Eugene Onegin

Sara Feldman, Ph.D. Candidate, Department of Near Eastern Studies, University of Michigan

2:45 PM  

Panel:  Nabokov and Other Writers

“Terra infirma in Nabokov’s ‘Terra Incognita’”

Karen Rosenflanz, Associate Professor of Russian, College of St. Scholastica

"Nabokov's First English Novel in the Context of Contemporary Anglo-American Novels"

Irena Ronen, Independent Scholar

4:00 PM  Closing Remarks and Discussion on Perspectives for Future Research and Publication

7:00 PM  An Evening of Reminiscences and Reflections about the Life and Work of Omry Ronen / Location: Rackham Assembly Hall

RSVP Requested (dinner only) by Friday, October 25 to slavic@umich.edu.

Symposium sponsored by: Department of Slavic Languages and Literatures; Office of the Vice-President for Research; Horace H. Rackham School of Graduate Studies; Center for Russian, East European and Eurasian Studies; International Institute; Department of Comparative Literature; Department of English Language and Literature; and the Institute for the Humanities.