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Sympathy and synesthesia: Tolstoy's place in the intellectual history of cosmopolitanism

Gusejnova, Dina ORCID: 0000-0003-1356-9530 (2019) Sympathy and synesthesia: Tolstoy's place in the intellectual history of cosmopolitanism. In: Williams, Gavin, (ed.) Hearing the Crimean War: Wartime Sound and the Unmaking of Sense. Oxford University Press, New York, NY, 3 - 23. ISBN 9780190916749

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Identification Number: 10.1093/oso/9780190916749.003.0001


Gusejnova’s chapter offers a wide-ranging assessment of cosmopolitan interpretations of war in the European sentimental tradition. Taking impetus from Tolstoy’s reporting on the Crimean war, Gusejnova turns to the Russian formalists’ interpretation of his technique to reconstruct Tolstoy’s use of literary montage, later adapted to film by Sergei Eisenstein. The chapter then contextualizes the history of this technique within genealogies of cosmopolitan thought on the one hand, and literary sentimentalism on the other. Drawing on works by Adam Smith and Stendhal, Gusejnova surveys some of the intellectual and literary techniques through which cosmopolitan sentiments became widespread in eighteenth- and nineteenth-century Europe. She argues that Tolstoy’s reproduction of multi-sensory experiences through montage is a statement of his political thought, reflecting his intent to increase the human capacity for compassion in light of cosmopolitan ideals. The chapter proposes that greater understanding between people was driven by the literary, visual, and sonic mediation of violent wartime encounters.

Item Type: Book Section
Official URL:
Additional Information: © 2019 Oxford University Press
Divisions: International History
Subjects: J Political Science > JA Political science (General)
H Social Sciences > HN Social history and conditions. Social problems. Social reform
D History General and Old World > DR Balkan Peninsula
D History General and Old World > DK Russia. Soviet Union. Former Soviet Republics
Date Deposited: 26 Nov 2019 09:24
Last Modified: 13 Nov 2021 00:04

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