Michele Russo-A Plurilingual Analysis of Four Russian-American Autobiographies-Cournos, Nabokov, Berberova, Shteyngart


Michele Russo. A Plurilingual Analysis of Four Russian-American Autobiographies. Göttingen: V & R unipress, 2020, pp. 138.

Focusing on the connection between emigration and bilingualism/trilingualism, this volume analyzes the cultural and linguistic passage of four American writers with Russian origins: Cournos (1881-1966), Nabokov (1899-1977), Berberova (1901-1993), Shteyngart (*1972). Such passage from the source language, Russian, to the target language, English, is examined from linguistic, narratological and sociological perspectives. The combination of languages originates in Cournos’s autobiography and stands out in Nabokov’s and Shteyngart’s texts. The volume offers an insightful analysis of Berberova’s implicit bilingualism as well, represented by the expression of themes and the depiction of multilingual contexts pertaining to emigration.