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Kirill Postoutenko

Chaire de sociologie et d'anthropologie
Collège Smolny, Russie
Figures du Mal absolu dans le socialisme français et chez Dostoïevski : influence ou appréhension ?
01 November 2010 -
31 May 2011

Associate Professor, Sociology and Anthropology Program at Smolny College, St. Petersburg, Russia (2007). He also taught at the Russian State University of Humanities in Moscow, at the University of Southern California, Los Angeles, and as "DAAD-Gastdozent" at the University of Konstanz, Germany (2008-2010).


He was an invited fellow in Munich, New York, Graz, Vienna, London and Paris. His major research interests include theory and history of poetry, historical sociology of identity and social history of the 20th-century Europe. Book publications: Russian Verse: Meter, Rhythm, Rhyme and Stanza (1996, co-ed., in Russian), The "Onegin" Text in Russian Literature (1998, in Russian), Totalitarian Communication: Hierarchies, Codes and Messages (2010, ed.), Soviet Culture: Codes and Messages (2010), and Asymmetrical Concepts after Reinhart Koselleck: Historical Semantics and Beyond (co-ed., forthcoming).

The connections between Fyodor Dostoevsky and French radical writers have been discussed for over a century.


Although the influence of such thinkers as Charles Fourier or Pierre-Joseph Proudhon on Dostoevsky has never been denied, no detailed textual analysis has been performed so far, and differences has been largely downplayed or ignored. The historical clarification should not only fill this factual gap, but is intended to serve as a pretext for the more specific statement: far from being accidental or purely contextual, the diverging conceptualizations of absolute evil in Dostoevsky and French socialists attest to the profound contradiction between the utopian and the apocalyptic vision of the Absolute.


Whereas the first was the natural byproduct of the Enlightenment society and has been developed in 19th century France more extensively than in other cultures, the second was anchored in the Medieval (chiliastic) vision of Good and Evil and in the 19th century had been all but extinct outside of Eastern Europe.

20 Apr 2011 09:30 -
20 Apr 2011 13:00,
Paris :
Wandering Jew or Circulating Money? Teleology of ‘Jewish Question’ in Dostoevsky and Marx
Round table organized by Kirill Postoutenko (Paris IAS fellow)
15 Mar 2011 09:30 -
15 Mar 2011 13:00,
Paris :
La communication totalitaire

Contemporary period (1789-…)