‘Сенатор’ vs. ‘Поэт’: (авто)биографическая мифология и литературная репутация И.И. Дмитриева

Mikhail Velizhev


This paper is aimed at exploring the origins and mechanisms which have contributed to the creation of Ivan Dmitriev’s autobiographic ‘double identity’ – as a Russian ‘classic’ poet and as a high ranking state official. His biography is reconstructed in light of his literary and bureaucratic achievements (Dmitriev was one of the most famous and acknowledged poets at the beginning of the 19th century and also built a successful career as a civil servant, becoming the Russian minister of justice in 1810). A crucial point in his biography occurred when his two identities came into clash, in the course of a controversy with Mikhail Kachenovskii, critic and editor of an influential literary review, the «Vestnik Evropy». This paper analyses also Dmitriev’s defensive strategies against the attacks of literary critics who combined his two different identities, which seemed to him to be mutually exclusive. An explanation of his attitude can be found in the social conventions that regulated the Russian noblemen’s norms of behavior of the time.


Dmitriev; Autobiographic ‘double identity’; Classic poet; State official; Kachenovskii; Controversy

Full Text:


DOI: https://doi.org/10.25430/2281-6992/v5-117-150


  • There are currently no refbacks.

Journal on Life Writing and the Representation of the Self in Russian Culture

Dipartimento di Studi Linguistici e Letterari
Via Elisabetta Vendramini 13
35137 PADOVA

ISSN: 2281-6992
Registrazione del Tribunale di Padova 23-04-2013, n. 2326 Registro della Stampa,
Variazione: Tribunale di Padova 27-10-2014, n. 3197 Registro della Stampa.

Licenza Creative Commons

This work is licensed under a Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International (CC BY-NC-ND 4.0)

Indexed in:

MLA International Bibliography

The Directory of Open Access Journals