Polina Peremitina

Polina Peremitina's picture
MA Student

My work explores the sustained engagement by Olga Tokarczuk, a non-Jewish Polish author, engagement with Jewish theological and cultural traditions, and with the Polish and Polish Jewish literary canons in her novel The Books of Jacob (2014). I consider Tokarczuk’s attention in the novel to both the physical and imagined landscapes of the Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth: in particular, I follow the flow of the rivers Hnyla Lipa, the Dniester, and the Danube throughout the novel, and also consider how Tokarczuk allows her recreation of geographical watersheds to resonate with references to rivers and to the transmission of knowledge present within East European Jewish textual tradition. Closely reading the watersheds of these geographical and mythical rivers reveals the multicultural landscape of Poland. The immediacy of the climate crisis adds a further dimension to my interest in developing a methodological approach that reads text and tradition in tandem with landscape and the physical world.

Slavic Languages and Literatures