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29 November 2018
A Top US Professor Talks About his Lifelong Commitment to Russian Classics
Irvin Weil in the studio of the UNO News Service UNO News Service

10 December, the National Library of the Komi Republic will host a meeting with Irvin Weil, PhD. of Harvard University, a leading American authority on Russian literature.

Irvin Weil is often referred to as legend. The outstanding world expert on Russian literature personally met gurus of the Russian culture, including writers Korney Chukovsky, Vladimir Nabokov, Alexandr Solzhenitsyn, Sergey Dovlatov, poet Josef Brodsky, and composer Dmitry Shostakovich. Teaching at Northwestern University, Evanston, Illinois, Professor Weil is recognized by the faculty and students as one of the best lecturers in the USA: his course, Introduction to the Soviet Union and Successor States, used to draw record numbers - up to 800 people.

Irvin Weil is known not only for his lectures and publications on Russian literature, but also for his expert knowledge of Russian music. He developed a unique course, Russian Music in the Context of the Russian Culture,  explicating the relations between poetry and music. Talking about music at his lectures, he would often surprise students by breaking into singing in quite a professional baritone, to illustrate a point.  

One of Professor Weil's most famous publications is the book about Maksim Gorky. Incidentally, 2018 is the jubilee year not only for the Soviet classic writer, who would have turned 150 on 28 May, but also for our American guest. His advanced age does not prevent him from travelling with tours of public lectures across the cities of Russia.

In 1983, Irvin Weil was awarded A. Pushkin gold medal for his distinguished achievements in the promotion of the Russian language and intercultural exchange.

In 2005, The Teaching Company recorded Irvin Weil's lectures, Classics of Russian Literature, for The Great Courses series, placing him in the top 1 percent of greatest US professors.

10 December, at 14:00, please be invited to meet Professor Irvin Weil at the National Library of Komi.

The meeting is in Russian.

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