The Intimate Stranger

Meetings with the Devil in Nineteenth-Century Russian Literature

by Julian W. Connolly (Author)
©2001 Monographs XII, 308 Pages


The Intimate Stranger provides the first detailed investigation of a distinctive literary phenomenon: a fascination with demons and devils in nineteenth-century Russian literature. Nearly all of the major authors of the period – Pushkin, Gogol, Lermontov, Dostoevsky, and Tolstoy – used images of devils to explore issues of human temptation, sin, and guilt in a troubled world. Asking fundamental questions – where does evil come from? when does it appear in characters’ lives? – these writers created a remarkable array of demonic figures, ranging from grotesque demons to handsome nihilists. This book discusses the various literary, religious, and folkloric factors that influenced the representation of the demonic, and it investigates the profound, soul-shattering effects that a personal encounter with the demonic may have on an individual’s life.


XII, 308
ISBN (Hardcover)
sin guilt temptation
New York, Bern, Berlin, Bruxelles, Frankfurt/M., Oxford, Wien, 2001. XII, 308 pp.

Biographical notes

Julian W. Connolly (Author)

The Author: Julian W. Connolly is Professor of Slavic Languages and Literatures at the University of Virginia. He is the author of Ivan Bunin and Nabokov’s Early Fiction: Patterns of Self and Other. He edited two volumes of literary criticism, Nabokov and His Fiction: New Perspectives and Invitation to a Beheading: A Critical Companion, and he served as co-editor of Studies in Russian Literature in Honor of Vsevolod Setchkarev. He has published numerous articles on nineteenth- and twentieth-century Russian literature.


Title: The Intimate Stranger