Irina Shevelenko


Associate Professor of Slavic Languages and Literature

Graduate Advisor


Ph.D., Stanford University, 1998
M.A., Stanford University, 1994
Diploma in Russian Language and Literature, University of Tartu, Estonia, 1991



Research Interests: 

Russian modernist literature and art; Russian émigré literature; Russian poetry; Russian intellectual history; critical theory; sociology of literature; nationalism studies.

Courses Taught: 

UNDERGRADUATE: Tolstoy (in translation); Women in Russian Literature (in translation); Russia Today in Literature and Film (in Russian); Fourth-Year Russian

GRADUATE: Introduction to Old Church Slavonic and the History of Russian Literary Language; Old Russian Literature; Eighteenth-Century Russian Literature; Nationalism and Aesthetic Experiment: Russian Art and Literature, 1860-1910s (graduate seminar); Modernist Poetics and the Birth of Modern Literary Theory in Russia (graduate seminar); Russian Modernism: Aesthetic Ideas, Poetics, and Cultural Mythologies (graduate seminar)

Selected Publications: 

Professor Shevelenko's Publications Website

For a complete list of publications, please see Prof. Shevelenko's CV (link below)


Modernism as Archaism: Nationalism and the Quest for a Modernist Aesthetic in Russia

In this book-length study, I investigate the encounter of Modernist aesthetic agendas with the process of nationalist indoctrination in late Imperial Russia. I discuss the proliferation of archaistic aesthetics in a nationalist key in Modernist literary and artistic media as a fact of Russian intellectual history, focusing on the analysis of discursive strategies employed to justify “nationally-minded” artistic programs and practices. I argue that a peculiar bond between archaism and nationalism emerged in Russian Modernism as a means to construct an alternative “modern” aesthetic paradigm that would not appear dependent on an “alien,” westernized, cultural heritage, and that the resulting trend of cultural constructivism had lasting significance for modern Russian culture.


  • Irina Shevelenko. Literaturnyi put’ Tsvetaevoi: Ideologiia—poetika—identichnost’ avtora v kontekste epokhi [=Tsvetaeva’s Literary Path: Author’s Ideology, Poetics, and Identity in the Context of Epoch]. Moscow: Novoe Literaturnoe Obozrenie, 2002. 464 pp. 
    • Second, revised, edition. Moscow: Novoe Literaturnoe Obozrenie, 2015. 448 pp.
  • [Co-edited with E. B. Korkina.] Marina Tsvetaeva, Boris Pasternak. “Dushi nachinaiut videt’”: Pis’ma 1922–1936 godov [= Letters 1922–1936]. Moscow: Vagrius, 2004. 720 pp. (Notes: pp. 565-707.); 2nd edition: 2008.

  • [Co-edited with E. B. Korkina.] Marina Tsvetaeva. Neizdannoe. Svodnye tetradi [= Unpublished. Notebooks]. Moscow: Ellis Lak, 1997. 640 pp. (Notes: pp. 559-626.)

  • Irina Shevelenko. Materialy o russkoi emigratsii 1920–1930-kh gg. v sobranii baronessy M. D. Vrangel’ [=Materials on Russian Emigration of the 1920s and 1930s in the Baroness M. D. Wrangel Collection]. Stanford, 1995 (Stanford Slavic Studies, vol. 9). 185 pp., XLII (photos).

  • [Co-edited with Konstantin Polivanov and Andrey Ustinov.] Themes and Variations: In Honor of Lazar Fleishman. Stanford, 1994 (Stanford Slavic Studies, vol. 8). 550 pp.


(Russian titles are given in English translation; all publications originally in Russian)

  • Forthcoming: Encyclopedia article on Marina Tsvetaeva in vol. 6 of Russkie pisateli, 1800-1917 [=Russian Writers, 1800-1917] (8,000 words); volume scheduled for publication by Rossiiskaia Entsiklopediia (Moscow) in 2014.
  • "‘Suzdal’ God-Daubers,’ ‘Novgorodian quattrocento,’ and the Russian Avant-Garde," Novoe Literaturnoe Obozrenie 124 (2013), 148-179. Accessible online at
  • “Representing the Empire and the Nation: Russia at the 1900 Universal Exposition in Paris,” in Alexander Etkind, Dirk Uffelmann, and Ilya Kukulin, eds., Tam, vnutri: Praktiki vnutrennei kolonizatsii v kul'turnoi istorii Rossii [= Over There, Within: Practices of Internal Colonization in Russian Cultural History]. Moscow: Novoe Literaturnoe Obozrenie, 2012, 413-444.

  • “Empire and Nation in the Imagination of Russian Modernism,” Ab Imperio 3 (2009), 171–206.

  • “History and Creativity in the Pasternak—Tsvetaeva Dialogue,” The Real Life of Pierre Delalande. Studies in Russian and Comparative Literature to Honor Alexander Dolinin, Part I (Stanford, 2007) [Stanford Slavic Studies, vol. 33], 315–334.

  • “The ‘Discovery’ of Old Russian Icon Painting in the Aesthetic Reflection of the 1910s,” Studia Russica Helsingiensia et Tartuensia X, part 2 (2006), 259–281.
    Accessible online at:

  • “Modernism as Archaism: Nationalism, Russian Style, and Archaizing Aesthetics in Russian Modernism,” Wiener Slawistischer Almanach 56 (2005 [actual: June 2006]), 141–183.
    Accessible online at,00143.html


2012-2014: Vilas Associate Award, Graduate School, UW-Madison

2011-2012: Resident Fellowship, Institute for Research in the Humanities, UW-Madison

2010: Summer research award, Graduate School, UW-Madison

03/2005—08/2006: Research Fellowship, Alexander von Humboldt Foundation, Germany

2004: Diploma of the Federal Agency for Archives of the Russian Federation (competition of scholarly archival publications for the years 2003—2004) for scholarly/editorial work on the volume of Pasternak—Tsvetaeva correspondence (2004)