(1893 – 1984)
Shklovsky Victor Borisovich (1893 – 1984), writer, literary critic. Born January 12 (24 N. p.) In St. Petersburg in the family of a teacher. Childhood years passed in the capital, in the Admiralty part of the city. From childhood I read a lot, although at school I studied badly, was expelled, “I had to go to an indulgent gymnasium”, which he graduated brilliantly. Here he began to publish (“The right of sorrow” – in the journal “Spring”, where the secretary was V. Kamensky). Enters into the philological faculty of St. Petersburg University, listens to lectures by such famous teachers as Academician Krachkovsky and Academician Baudouin de Courtenay. In these years he is fond of poetry, met with O. Mandelstam, S. Gorodetsky, later – with Mayakovsky. In 1916, along with Yakubinsky, Brick and Polivanov participated in the organization of the Society for the Study of the Theory of Poetic Language (OPOYAZ),
During the February Revolution, he served in the tsarist army, as an instructor in an automobile company (rose to the rank of senior non-commissioned officer), went to the south-western front, where he was to attack, was wounded, received the Order of St. George. After recovery he was sent to Persia, where he learned about the accomplishment of the October Revolution. I returned to Petrograd. Later he served in the Red Army, was wounded at the onset of Wrangel. Returning again to Petrograd, he worked in the editorial board of the “Life of Arts”, became a professor at the Institute of Art History. In order not to be a witness at the trial of the Right Socialist-Revolutionaries, he went on the ice of the Gulf of Finland to Finland, then with the help of his uncle who lived in England (artist Ivan Pugni), received a visa to Germany, where he met Ehrenburg, met Meyerhold and Mayakovsky, with with which he received permission to return to his homeland.
In 1925 he published the book Theory of Prose. He was engaged in the history of literature: in 1928 he wrote the book Material and Style in Leo Tolstoy’s
War and Peace, and Matvei Komarov, a resident of the city of Moscow, in 1929.
In the 1930s he appeared with critical articles, wrote about contemporary literature: Sholokhov, N. Ostrovsky, M. Gorky, V. Mayakovsky. The interest in history was reflected in his works “Marco Polo” (1936), “Minin and Pozharsky” (1940), “The Tale of the Artist Fedotov” (1955) and others.
In 1963 comes the fundamental biography “Leo Tolstoy”. along with the literature Shklovsky worked in cinema, creating works on the theory ino, literary portraits Eisenstein, L. Kuleshova, Dzigi Vertov et al., acting as the author and co-author film scripts.
In recent years he performed with excellent literary works – “Energy of delusion” (1981), etc. V. Shklovsky died in 1984.
A brief biography from the book: Russian writers and poets. A short biographical dictionary. Moscow, 2000.