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RE: Constructions, Memory and Imagination

The University of Virginia Society of Slavic Graduate Students will host an interdisciplinary forum devoted to the intersections of memory and imagination. Traditional applications of the terms memory and imagination have emphasized a barrier between the concepts based on the premise of accuracy. However, cognitive scientists have demonstrated that the same neural processes underlie both memory and imagination. Memories are as much constructs as imagination. Despite the seeming differences between memory and imagination, they both affect every sphere of human experience and endeavor. In this forum, speakers from a variety of fields will explore the role of memory and imagination in literature, history, art, linguistics, and identity.

Keynote speakers:

Friday, March 31, 6 p.m., Maury 209


Russian journalist, author, and political activist; contributor to The New York Review of Books, The New Yorker, The New York Times, Vanity Fair, and The Washington Post; author of groundbreaking books on Russian politics, society, culture, and history. For more information see speaker’s bio at

Saturday, April 1, 5:30 p.m., Maury 209


“The Texture of Translingual Memory, or Nabokov in the Attic”

Dr. Maxim D. Shrayer is a professor of Russian, English, and Jewish Studies at Boston College. Dr. Shrayer has published fifteen books of criticism, nonfiction, fiction, poetry, and translations. Among Shrayer's awards and honors are the National Jewish Book Award, the Guggenheim Fellowship and the Rockefeller Fellowship. 

Forum organized by the Society of Slavic Graduate Students at UVA and sponsored by CREEES, the Department of Slavic Languages and Literatures, the French Department, the McIntire Department of Art, and the Center for Global Inquiry + Innovation. Masha Gessen’s talk co-sponsored by CREEES, the Department of Slavic Languages and Literatures, The Women, Gender, and Sexuality Studies Program (WGS), the Center for Global Inquiry + Innovation, the Department of English, the Corcoran Department of History, and the Department of Media Studies.