D.Sc. in Philology

Professor Emeritus


Research Interests: Russian Classics (Pushkin, Tolstoy, Dostoevsky), Mikhail Bakhtin, Russian music, opera, and theater.



  • - Ph.D. in Comparative Literature (University of Texas at Austin, 1980);
  • - MAT in Russian Language Teaching, and Russian Studies (Harvard University, 1968);
  • - BA in Russian Literature (Cornell University, 1966)


Selected Works:

- Ocherki po russkoi literaturnoi i muzikal'noi kulture [Essays on Russian literary and musical culture]. Sovremennaia zapadnaia slavistika, Academic Studies Press, Boston, 2019. 560 p. In Russ.

- All the Same the Words Don’t Go Away (Essays on Authors, Heroes, Aesthetics, and Stage Adaptations from the Russian Tradition). Texts from 1988-2010, upgraded and edited with headnotes and postscripts; Introduction by David Bethea. Academic Studies Press, Boston, 2011. 422 p. In English.

- The Cambridge Introduction to Russian Literature. Cambridge University Press, 2008. In English. Translation into Chinese 2015.

- Chester Dunning with Caryl Emerson, Sergei Fomichev, Lidiia Lotman, and Antony Wood. The Uncensored Boris Godunov: A Case for Pushkin’s 1825 Original, with annotated text and translation. University of Wisconsin Press, 2006. [2 chapters authored, 2 co-authored] In English.

- The Life of Musorgsky. Cambridge University Press "Musical Lives" series, 1999. In English. Translation into Chinese 2001, into Italian 2006.

- The First Hundred Years of Mikhail Bakhtin. Princeton University Press, 1997. In English. Translation into Portuguese 2002.

- Modest Musorgsky and Boris Godunov: Myths, Realities, Reconsiderations. With Robert William Oldani. Cambridge University Press, 1994. In English.

- Mikhail Bakhtin: Creation of a Prosaics. With Gary Saul Morson. Stanford University Press, 1990. In English. Translation into Portuguese and Korean 2006.

- Boris Godunov: Transpositions of a Russian Theme. Indiana University Press, 1986. In English.


Selected Articles:

- "Čapek, Janáček, That Makropulos Thing, and a Word about Sacrificed Women in 20th century Slavic Opera". Between Texts, Languages,and Cultures, a Festschrift for Michael Henry Heim, eds. Craig Cravens, Masako Fidler, and Susan Kresin (Slavica, 2008), pp. 189-198. In English.

- "Princeton’s Boris Godunov, 1936/2007: After Seventy Years, Prokofiev’s Music is attached to Meyerhold’s Vision of Pushkin’s Play". Three Oranges [published by the Serge Prokofiev Foundation], Special Issue 14 (November 2007), co-edited with Simon Morrison. On Princeton University’s 2007 premiere of the 1936 Meyerhold / Prokofiev production of Pushkin’s Boris Godunov. In English.

- "In Honor of Mikhail Gasparov’s Quarter-Century of Not Liking Bakhtin: Pro and Contra". Poetics. Self. Place. Essays in Honor of Anna Lisa Crone, eds. Catherine O’Neil, Nicole Boudreau, & Sarah Krive (Slavica Publishers, 2007), pp. 26-49. In English.

"Dvadtsat' piat' let spustia: Gasparov o Bakhtine" ["Twenty-Five Years Later: Gasparov on Bakhtin"]Voprosy literatury, vol. 2, 2006, pp. 12-47. Forum in memoriam M. L. Gasparov (1935-2005). In Russ.

- "Artur Vincent Lourié's 'Blackamoor of Peter the Great': Pushkin's Exotic Ancestor as Twentieth-Century Opera". Under the Sky of my Africa: Alexander Pushkin and Blackness. Eds. Catharine Theimer Nepomnyashchy et al. Northwestern University Press, 2006, pp. 332-367. In English.

- "Shostakovich and the Russian Literary Tradition". Shostakovich and his World Ed. Laurel E. Fay. Bard Music Festival/Princeton University Press, 2004, pp. 183-226. In English.

- "Zosima's 'Mysterious Visitor': Again Bakhtin on Dostoevsky, and Dostoevsky on Heaven and Hell". A New Word on The Brothers Karamazov. Ed. Robert Louis Jackson. Northwestern University Press, 2003, pp. 155-179. In English.

- "Tolstoy versus Dostoevsky and Bakhtin’s Ethics of the Classroom". Approaches to Teaching Anna Karenina, edited by Liza Knapp and Amy Mandelker. Modern Language Association Publications, 2003, pp. 104-116. In English.

- "Tolstoy's Aesthetics". Cambridge Companion to Tolstoy. Ed. Donna Tussing Orwin. Cambridge University Press, 2002, pp. 237-251. In English.

- "Coming to Terms with Bakhtin's Carnival: Ancient, Modern, Sub Specie Aeternitatis". Bakhtin and the Classics. Ed. R. Bracht Branham. Northwestern University Press, 2001, pp. 5-26. In English.

- "Bakhtin, Lotman, Vygotsky, and Lydia Ginzburg on Types of Selves: A Tribute". Self and Story in Russian History. Eds. Laura Engelstein and Stephanie Sandler. Cornell University Press, 2000, pp. 20-45. In English.

- "Bakhtin After 1990: How Having the Early Writings in English Has Reconfigured the Whole". Festschrift for Vadim Liapunov Eds. Stephen H. Blackwell and Nina Perlina. Indiana Slavic Studies, 2000, pp. 1-21. In English.


Teaching Experience

  • - Professor of Slavic Languages and Literatures and of Comparative Literature, Princeton University (1988-2015)
  • - Professor of Slavic Language and Literatures, Princeton University (1987-88)
  • - Associate Professor of Russian Literature, Cornell University (1986-87)
  • - Assistant Professor of Russian Literature, Cornell University (1980-86)
  • - Assistant Professor in Russian Area Studies, Windham College, Putney, VT (1972-76)
  • - Instructor in Russian Area Studies, Windham College (1970-71)
  • - Teacher, American History, Lawrenceville High School, Lawrenceville, NJ (1968-70)