'"People's ancestors are history's game" Byron's Don Juan and Russian history'

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Abstract

This article analyses selected cantos of Don Juan in relation to Russian politics and history. Russia’s ‘strangeness’ was a topic of fascination and revulsion for many writers and intellectuals in eighteenth-century Britain. Byron’s masterpiece with its picaresque hero is a key participant in this tradition. The article maps British preoccupations with Russia from Defoe to Byron before considering Byron’s poem in a dialogic engagement with Russian politics in the Romantic period. The critical apparatus is Bakhtinian and historicist and engages critically with recent work on the poem.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)149-164
JournalStudies in the Literary Imagination
Volume36
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - Oct 2003

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