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Postkolonial, hybrid, transkulturell – moderne Schreibweisen in der zeitgenössischen russisch-jüdischen Literatur

Klavdia Smola

Pages 107 - 150

This article focuses on contemporary Russian-Jewish prose written after the collapse of the Soviet Union both in Russia as well as abroad. The study explores postcolonial poetics and identity patterns in the works of some representative authors such as Aleksandr Melikhov, Oleg Iuriev or Lena Gorelik. In the fi rst section, the phenomenon of Soviet Jewry as a special topic of (post)colonial studies is critically examined: the unique position of Jews within the Soviet Empire, their ambivalent and problematic relation to the discourse of power and the emergence of the Soviet-Jewish “mimic (wo)men”. The study additionally considers a new type of identity in the work of younger émigré authors: a postcolonial pluralistic self-conception of Jews in a modern globalised western world. The traditional Jewish dichotomy of Home vs. Galuth/Exile is questioned and sometimes even deconstructed in these new and rather complex – hybrid or transcultural – identity patterns. The second part of the article is dedicated to literary texts, which I view as examples of fi ctional “de-colonisation” and in which the new identities are formed by particular literary poetics. Authors employ alternative structures of focalization, stylistic mimicry, irony, space and time as well as bilingual narration to reverse stereotypical view of Jews and subvert Russian or Soviet national myths.


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