Reshetnikov, Fedor Mikhailovich

The following article is from The Great Soviet Encyclopedia (1979). It might be outdated or ideologically biased.

Reshetnikov, Fedor Mikhailovich


Born Sept. 5 (17), 1841, in Ekaterinburg, now Sverdlovsk; died Mar. 9 (21), 1871, in St. Petersburg. Russian writer.

After graduating from the Perm’ District School in 1859, Reshetnikov worked as an official in Ekaterinburg and Perm’, moving to St. Petersburg in 1863. He began publishing in 1861.

Reshetnikov’s association with the journal Sovremennik (The Contemporary) was decisive for his literary career; the journal published his first important work, “The People of Podlipnaia” (1864), an ethnographic sketch about the life of barge haulers. Reshetnikov was a democratic and realistic writer thoroughly familiar with the way of life of the lowest social strata. He depicted the proletarianization of the masses in postreform Russia, concentrating on the evolution of his protagonists’ social consciousness. His novels The Miners (1866), The Glumovs (1866–67; separate edition, 1880), and Where Is Life Better? (1868) faithfully described the life of the Ural miners, becoming a generalized depiction of the situation of the Russian working class before and after the reforms. However, the literary value of Reshetnikov’s works is reduced by a certain looseness of composition, prolixity, and excessive ethnographic detail.

Reshetnikov was the first Russian author to describe a strike. His novel One’s Own Bread (1870) is devoted to women’s emancipation. Reshetnikov also wrote the novella The Protégé (1864), the autobiographical novella Among People (1865), and many short stories and essays.


Poln. sobr. soch., vols. 1–6. Sverdlovsk, 1936–48. (Critical and biographical essay by I. Veksler in vol. 6.)
Izbr. proizv., vols. 1–2. [Introductory article by N. I. Sokolov.] Moscow, 1956.


Filippova, K. Mezhdy liud’mi: Povest’ o pisatele F. M. Reshetnikove. Sverdlovsk, 1952.
Sheptaev, L. S. “Tvorchestvo F. M. Reshetnikova.” In Proza pisatelei-demokratov shestidesiatykh godov XIX v. Moscow, 1962.
Istoriia russkoi literatury XIX v.: Bibliografich. ukazatel’. Moscow-Leningrad, 1962.


The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.