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A.M. Gorky Institute
of World Literature
of the Russian Academy of Sciences

IWL RAS Publishing

A.M. Gorky Institute of World Literature
of the Russian Academy of Sciences


Povarskaya 25a, 121069 Moscow, Russia



Types of publications

  • Classification – name: Literary studies
  • Author: Elena G. Belousova
  • Pages: 100–111
  • Publisher: A.M. Gorky Institute of World Literature of the Russian Academy of Sciences (IWL RAS Publ.)
  • Rights – description: Creative Commons Attribution-NoDerivatives 4.0 (СС BY-ND)
  • Rights – URL: Visit Website
  • Language of the publication: Russian
  • Type of document: Research Article
  • Collection: I.A. Bunin and his Time: Context of Life — History of Work
  • DOI:
  • Year of publication: 2021
  • Place of publication: Moscow
  • PDF

  • Belousova, E.G. “The ‛Light – Darkness’ Аntinomy in the Novels ‛The Life of Arseniev’ by Ivan Bunin and ‛The Defense’ by Vladimir Nabokov: to the Issue of the Typological Convergence of the Authors’ Styles.” I.A. Bunin and His Time: Context of Life — History of Work. Ex. eds. T.M. Dvinyatina and S.N. Morozov; Eds. A.V. Bakuntsev and E.R. Ponomarev. Moscow, IWL RAS Publ., 2021, pp. 100–111. (In Russ.)

About the author:

Elena G. Belousova, DSc in Philology, Associate Professor, Head of the Department of the Russian Language and Literature, Chelyabinsk State University, Bratiev Kashirinykh 129, 454001 Chelyabinsk, Russia.


E-mail: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.


The paper examines the problem of Ivan Bunin and Vladimir Nabokov’s creative relationship on the material of the novels “The Life of Arseniev” and “The Defense” through the prism of the writers’ individual styles. It considers the antinomic character of Bunin and Nabokov’s poetics caused by common social and historical circumstances of writing both novels with common theme of individual consciousness’s life, both of a сharacter and of an author. The specific forms and techniques using which the universal antinomy of light and darkness in the novels “The Life of Arseniev” and “The Defense” is manifested are also identified. Being organic to each author’s type of artistic consciousness and structure of personality, they constitute the unique stylistic tool, which opens Bunin and Nabokov’s features of the vision, understanding and reconstruction of the world. The typological convergence of original authors’ styles is revealed in the conclusion. Meeting the needs of age they were living in, Bunin’s and Nabokov’s styles converge in the search of art forms, which could delve deep into the human individuality and reality.

  • Keywords: Ivan Bunin, Vladimir Nabokov, “The Life of Arseniev”, “The Defense”, style.


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