Skaftymov, Aleksandr Pavlovich
Born Sept. 28 (Oct. 10), 1890, in the village of Stolypino, Vol’sk District, Saratov Province; died Jan. 26, 1968, in Saratov. Soviet literary scholar. Honored Scientist of the RSFSR (1947).
Skaftymov graduated from the University of Warsaw in 1913. He began publishing in 1916. In 1923 he became a professor at the University of Saratov. Skaftymov’s book The Poetics and Genesis of the By liny (1924) was the first work to investigate the structure of the Russian bylina (epic folk song). The main theme of Skaftymov’s works on Dostoevsky, L. N. Tolstoy, A. N. Ostrovskii, Chekhov, and Stendhal was the inner creative vision and moral ideal of every great writer, re-created through the integrated interpretation of a literary work. He boldly posed complex literary and philosophic questions on Tolstoy and Hegel, Chekhov’s dispute with Schopenhauer, and the authorial view of the characters in works by Dostoevsky and Chekhov. In articles written in the period 1946-48, Skaftymov attributed the “constructional uniqueness” of Chekhov’s plays to the fundamental newness of Chekhov’s dramatic conflicts. Skaftymov also wrote extensively about the life and works of N. G. Cher-nyshevskii. He was awarded an Order of Lenin.
WORKSStat’i o russkoi literature. Saratov, 1958.
Nravstvennye iskaniia russkikhpisatelei: Stat’i i issledovaniia o russkikh klassikakh. Moscow, 1972.
REFERENCESZhuk, A., and E. Pokusaev. “Aleksandr Pavlovich Skaftymov.” Voprosy literatury, 1970, no. 9.
Rodnianskaia, I. “Nravstvennye iskaniia” (review). Novyi mir, 1974, no. 2.
“Spisok pechatnykh rabot A. P. Skaftymova.” Uch. zap. Saratovskogo gos. un-ta, 1957, vol. 56. [23–1485–]