2020 №16


УДК / UDK: 821.161.1
About the author:

Alexei Lyubomudrov, Dr. Hab. of Philology, Leading Researcher, Institute of Russian Literature (Pushkin House) of the Russian Academy of Sciences, St. Petersburg, Russia. E-mail: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.


For the first time а complete correspondence between Leonid Zurov (1902  –1971), the writer of the Russian Diaspora, and Viktor Manuilov (1903  –1987), a famous literary researcher, is introduced into a scientific usage. The main theme of their letters is the problem of transferring to Russia Ivan Bunin’s manuscript and memorial heritage, of which Zurov became the owner. The publication clarifies the reasons why the long and hard negotiations ended without any success. It allows to define more exactly the details and circumstances of this case. The correspondence affects the names of many key figures of cultural life both of the Russian abroad and Metropolitan area. It characterizes those persons who actively supported the return of Bunin's legacy as well as officials who blocked the process. The material reflects the struggle of Russian writers, scientists, museum curators against the Soviet bureaucratic machine for which Bunin was always ideologically alien. It paints a picture of the public sentiment and the Soviet cultural policy of the 1960s. Some letters concern Zurov’s articles devoted to M. Lermontov as well as his work on the novel “Winter Palace”. The publication allows to clarify Zurov’s psychological portrait and to identify a number of significant episodes in the V. Manuilov’s scientific biography.

Keywords: Leonid Zurov, Viktor Manuilov, Ivan Bunin’s archive, Russian emigration, Russian literature, correspondence.
For citation:

Lyubomudrov Alexei. “Everything simple and clear has been turned into incredibly complex by someone”. Correspondence between Leonid Zurov and Viktor Manuilov (1961  –1967). Literaturnyi fakt, 2020, no. 2 (16), pp. 119  –181.

DOI 10.22455/2541-8297-2020-16-119-181


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