New York, NY - 1 December 2009 - The Modern Language Association of America today announced it is awarding its eighth Aldo and Jeanne Scaglione Prize for Studies in Slavic Languages and Literatures to Edyta M. Bojanowska, of Rutgers University, for her book Nikolai Gogol: Between Ukrainian and Russian Nationalism, published by Harvard University Press. Andrew Kahn, of the University of Oxford, is receiving an honorable mention for his book Pushkin's Lyric Intelligence, published by Oxford University Press. The prize is awarded biennially for an outstanding scholarly work on the linguistics or literatures of the Slavic languages, including Belarussian, Bulgarian, Croatian, Czech, Polish, Russian, Serbian, Slovak, Slovene, and Ukrainian.
The prize is one of eighteen awards that will be presented on 28 December 2009 during the association's annual convention, held this year in Philadelphia. The members of the 2009 selection committee were Gabriella Safran (Stanford Univ.); Barry Scherr (Dartmouth Coll.), chair; and William Mills Todd III (Harvard Univ.). The committee's citation for the winning book reads:
Nikolai Gogol: Between Ukrainian and Russian Nationalism contains a major new interpretation of one of Russia's most difficult writers. As the subtitle indicates, Edyta M. Bojanowska does not place Gogol in one tradition or the other but instead, in a series of carefully nuanced analyses, discusses how his writings contributed to both Ukrainian and Russian nationalist models. She traces in fine detail the development of his ideas and in the process sheds light on works by Gogol that have generally received less attention from critics. Equally at ease in presenting theories of nationalism and in carrying out close textual readings, Bojanowska has produced a study that will have a lasting influence on future Gogol scholarship.
Edyta M. Bojanowska is an assistant professor of Russian and Comparative Literature at Rutgers University. She specializes in nineteenth-century century Russian prose. She received her PhD from Harvard University, where she was also a junior fellow at the Society of Fellows and a lecturer in Slavic languages and literatures. Her articles have appeared in journals such as Russian Review, Slavic and East European Journal, and Canadian Slavonic Papers. She has given numerous presentations, most recently at the conferences of the American Comparative Literature Association and of the American Association for the Advancement of Slavic Studies. She is currently working on a manuscript entitled "Imperial Nationalism and Russian Culture."
The Aldo and Jeanne Scaglione Endowment Fund was established and donated by Aldo Scaglione to the MLA in 1987. The fund honors the memory of his wife, Jeanne Daman Scaglione. A Roman Catholic, Jeanne Daman taught in a Jewish kindergarten in Brussels, Belgium. When deportation of Jews began in 1942, she helped find hiding places for 2,000 children. She also helped rescue many Jewish men by obtaining false papers for them. Her life and contributions to humanity are commemorated in the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum in Washington, DC.