Valerian Fedorovich Pereverzev
Pereverzev, Valer’ian Fedorovich
Born Oct. 6 (18), 1882, in Bobrov, in what is now Voronezh Oblast; died May 5, 1968, in Moscow. Soviet literary scholar.
Pereverzev studied at the faculty of physics and mathematics at the University of Kharkov from 1901 to 1905 but was expelled for participating in the revolutionary movement. He was arrested and exiled to Narym. In 1911 he returned to Moscow, where he devoted himself to lecturing and to literary studies. After the October Revolution of 1917, Pereverzev worked as a teacher and scholar. He was a coeditor of the Literary Encyclopedia (1929–30). In 1921 he became a professor at Moscow State University.
Pereverzev’s chief works dealt with N. V. Gogol, F. M. Dos-toevsky, and I. A. Goncharov. Together with his adherents, he published a collection of articles, Literary Criticism (1928), which led to a debate on the “Pereverzev school” (1929–30). Basing his methodological views on G. V. Plekhanov’s aesthetic formulations, Pereverzev maintained that form and content in a literary work are a unity and that an author’s literary characterizations are determined by his class milieu. These views often led Pereverzev to make oversimplified and distorted sociological interpretations of literary works. However, his literary studies remain valuable owing to their masterly analyses, subtle insights into systems of imagery, and sensitivity to literary style.
WORKSTvorchestvo Dostoevskogo, 3rd ed. Moscow-Leningrad, 1928.
Tvorchestvo Gogolia, 4th ed. Ivanovo-Voznesensk, 1928.
U istokov russkogo realisticheskogo romana, 2nd ed. Moscow, 1965.
Literatura drevnei Rusi. Moscow, 1971.
REFERENCESLiteraturnye diskussii: Bibliografich. vypusk no. 1. Pereverzevshchina i tvorcheskie puti proletarskoi literatury. Moscow, 1931.
Mashinskii, S. I. Nasledie i nasledniki. Moscow, 1967. Pages 54–66.
E. M. PUL’KHRITUDOVA