2021 “Varlam Shalamov, Work/Energy, and the Anthropocene.” ISLE (28: 1): 329-346. [Originally published online: October 21, 2019].
This paper argues that Shalamov’s dual labour point of view–as writer and coerced labourer in Kolyma–gives him unique insight into the origins of the Anthropocene as they occurred in the Soviet system. Tensions in his prose arise from the alienated and colonial functions of his work, on the one hand, and his refusal to work, which was tied to creating relationships of responsibility to the other-than-human.
Drawing on multiple fields of research, scholars of Russian literature devote themselves to the question, what can be gleaned from Russian literature for interpreting the more-than-human history of the Anthropocene epoch? Contributions from co-editor Elena Fratto, Anindita Banerjee, Jane Costlow, Isabel Lane, Henrietta Mondry, Colleen McQuillen, Tom Newlin offer insights on this question with material ranging from the eighteenth century to the present.
2020 “Butterflies in the Chthulucene: Reading Nabokov Geologically” Russian Literature (114-115: June-July): 85-104.
This paper reads Nabokov’s butterflies alongside a Nishnaabe story of eel migration (from Leanne Simpson) as tales of ‘transmotion’ and ‘survivance’ (Gerald Vizenor) on a geological scale, suggesting that storytelling, centring Indigenous epistemologies in our reading, and building relationships of responsibility are key tactics in overcoming the urgencies of the Anthropocene.
2020 “Three Aral Sea Films and the Soviet Ecology.” October (171: Winter): 27-46.
This paper looks at three films set on the Aral Sea that span the course of the Soviet ecology. These films give a unique perspective on the foundations of the Soviet Ecology that went from paradise, to land of plenty, and then to desert. These foundations, it turns out, bear remarkable similarity to those of the English ecology in the colonial period.
2017 “Enclosure, Writing, and Resistance: Revisiting the Prose of Daniil Kharms.” Canadian Slavonic Papers (59: 1-2): 56-69.
Revisiting the prose of Daniil Kharms, this article looks at the city, the apartment, the
body, and writing as contested sites between the forces of enclosure and Kharms’s
2017 Op-ed: “One Hundred Years On, How Should We Remember the Russian Revolution?“, The Memorial University Gazette