Akim Volynsky

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Akim Volynsky
Born Хаим Лейбович Флексер
(1861-05-03)3 May 1861
Zhitomir, Russian Empire
Died 6 July 1926(1926-07-06) (aged 65)
Leningrad, USSR
Occupation critic, essayist, literary administrator
Years active 1889-1925

Akim Lvovich Volynsky (Аким Львович Волынский, real name Khaim Leybovich Flekser, Хаим Лейбович Флексер; 3 May 1861, Zhitomir, Russian Empire, — 6 July 1926, Leningrad, USSR) was a Russian literary (later theatre and ballet) critic and historian, one of the early ideologists of the Russian Modernism.[1]

Born into a Jewish family, his identity would play a role in his future artistic endeavors.[2]

Volynsky came to prominence in 1890—1895 with a series of essays published by Severny Vestnik of which he later became the co-editor. His 1896 book Russian Critics which targeted figures like Nikolai Chernyshevsky and Nikolai Dobrolyubov, later in its turn evoked Georgy Plekhanov's scathing criticism. It was followed by another seminal compilation, Fighting for Idealism (Борьба за идеализм, 1900). Among Akim Volynsky's notable books were Leonardo da Vinchi (1900) and F.M. Dostoyevsky (1906); the former drew accusations of plagiarism, as Volynsky the editor has apparently used in it the materials collected by Dmitry Merezhkovsky.[3]

After the 1917 Revolution Volynsky stayed in the Soviet Russia. In 1920-1924 he was a chairman of the Leningrad section of the Writers' Union and for a while headed the Leningrad School of Choreography. His threatise Book of Joys. The Alphabet of the Classic Dance came out in 1925.[4]


  1. ^ "Волынский, Аким Львович". Brockhaus & Efron. Retrieved 16 November 2015. 
  2. ^ Helen Tolstoy, "Akim Volynsky and his Jewish cycle" in Leonid Katsis, Helen Tolstoy (ed.), "Jewishness in Russian Culture: Within and Without", BRILL (2013), p. 53
  3. ^ Zobnin, Yuri. The Life and Deeds of Dmitry Merezhkovsky. Moscow. — Molodaya Gvardiya. 2008. Lives of Distinguished People series, issue 1091. ISBN 978-5-235-03072-5 pp.400–404
  4. ^ Kotelnikov, V.A. Akim Volynsky, the Militant Idealist // Котельников В. А. Воинствующий идеалист Аким Волынский // Русская литература. 2006. № 1. / Pp. 20-75.