Salta al contenuto principale
Passa alla visualizzazione normale.


Andrej Belyj v Sicilii: imaginativnaja geografija i orientalizirujuscij vzgljad - kogo i na cto?


Andrei Belyi did not see Sicily (many factual mistakes can be pointed at): it was shielded by constantly open books. The author appears, in his travelogue, as a typical Orientalist. Characteristically enough, besides, he sought the Orient in a place a thousand kilometers west of Moscow. It would be pointless to criticize him from the point of view of a “native in an English hat”; what is interesting is that his Orientalist gaze at Sicily is astonishingly similar to the Orientalist gaze at Russia itself typical of Russian intellectuals. Alexander Etkind wrote about the “Internal Colonization” of Russia; in Italy a debate has begun about the “Internal Orientalism” of Northern Italians concerning the Southern part of the country – and as well that of Southern-born intellectuals writing about the South for the Northern public; for instance, the case of Giovanni Verga, finding the Orient in his native land, is enlightening. In his mature work Verga overcomes the Orientalist gaze by moving the focus inside the Sicilian lower classes; we can trace a similar process in Belyi's writings on Russia, but not on Sicily.