Title of the article:



Yakov D. Chechnev

Information about the author/authors

Yakov D. Chechnev — PhD in Philology, Researcher, A. M. Gorky Institute of World Literature of the Russian Academy of Sciences, Povarskaya St. 25 a, 121069 Moscow, Russia.
ORCID ID: https://orcid.org/0000-0001-9439-0430
Е-mail: ya.d.chechnev@yandex.ru


Philological sciences




Vol. 68


pp. 213–224


September 6, 2022

Approved after reviewing

October 24, 2022

Date of publication

June 28, 2023



Index UDK


Index BBK



The research was carried out at A. M. Gorky Institute of World Literature RAS with financial support from the Russian Science Foundation within grant No. 19-78-100, https://rscf.ru/project/19-78-10100/.


The paper examines the urban originality of the poetic diptych by M. M. Shkapskaya “Peter and Paul Fortress” (1922). The author highlights the way the “Russian Bastille” is perceived in the literary tradition and in which of the reception lines the poetess fits herself. The architectural structure receives an individual author's interpretation, becoming the bride of Peter the Great in M.M. Shkapskaya`s creative world. Thus, one of the key motifs of the poetess's creativity (the motif of motherhood) develops. The study shows that the image of the Petropavlovsk bride originates in the poem “About Petersburg” (1915), written in Toulouse. The poetess likens St. Petersburg to a bride “with a smoky crumpled veil”. The unexpected feminization of the city, to which the literary tradition attributes a “masculine” character (in comparison with the “feminine” Moscow), does not receive further development in the poem, remaining unexplained. After the revolution, the image of bride reappears in Shkapskaya's poetry. Using the example of a specific locus of St. Petersburg, the poetess builds a historiosophical concept associated with Peter I. The Peter and Paul Fortress turns out to be the bride of the first Russian emperor, raising his children. Shkapskaya's poem should be considered as a response to the discussion of the early 1920s about the role of Peter I in the history of Russia. The fortress becomes a symbol of the historical existence of the city, which did not stop with the arrival of the Bolsheviks.


Shkapskaya, Peter and Paul Fortress, Urbanism, Construction, Femininity.


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