BELKNAP Robert Louis

13 of March 2021
The 11th World Shakespeare Congress will be held online from the National University of Singapore on July 18–24, 2021. The Congress theme of circuits draws attention to the passage of Shakespeare’s work between places and periods, agencies and institutions, positionalities and networks of production, languages and mediums. The theme is particularly suited to the online medium of the Congress, that gathers together such passages of Shakespeare’s work not by the movements of persons between places, but by creatively connecting and expanding our circuits in multimedia and live conversations.
Database "Russian Shakespeare"
Moscow University for the Humanities
Robert Louis Belknap
Robert Louis Belknap

Robert Louis Belknap [23.12.1929, New York — 17.03.2014, New York] was Ph.D. (Slavic Languages and Literatures) Columbia University (1960), M.A. (1954), Columbia Russian Institute Certificate in Area Studies (1955), École des Langues Orientales Vivantes, University of Paris (1951–1952), A.B. (English-Latin), Princeton University (1951) summa cum laude.

He was the Chairman of the Literature Humanities (1963, 1967–1968, 1969–1970, 1989–1992), the Dean of Students (1968–1969), the Chairman of the Slavic Languages Department (1972–1973, 1991–1993), the Chairman of the University Seminar on the Theory of Literature (1972–1973, 1991–1996), the Director of the Russian Institute (1977–1980), the Director of the University Seminars (2000–2010), Honorary Doctorate, Petrozavodsk State University (2001), Professor Emeritus of Russian (2000–2013).

Robert L. Belknap was a Professor of Slavic Languages, and was briefly Acting Dean of Columbia College in 1976. During his acting deanship Belknap published a full-page essay in the Spec titled “Some Multifaceted Reflections on the College”.

He had taught Literature Humanities since 1957, and his commitment to the Core Curriculum extended far beyond the classroom: he chaired the Literature Humanities program on several occasions, chaired the Committee on Educational Policy (the Belknap Committee) in 1970 and co-authored (with Richard Kuhns) “Tradition and Innovation. General Education and the Reintegration of the University: A Columbia Report” (1970).

Professor Belknap received the Award for Distinguished Service to the Core Curriculum in 2000–2001. In the closing stages of his life, he was active in the revival of the Linguistics Program. He received the Great Teacher Award in 2010.

The Festschrift in his honor was published and it was delivered to him at home a few weeks before he passed away.

Works: The Structure of the Brothers Karamazov. The Hague ; Paris : Mouton, 1967 (Series: Slavistic printings and reprintings, 72) [Reprint — Evanston : Northwestern University Press, 1989; Russian translation — Struktura «Brat'ev Karamazovykh» / transl. from English ; ed. by V. S. Baevskiy. St. Petersburg : Gumanitarnoe agentstvo «Akademicheskii proekt», 1997. 143 p. (Sovremennaia zapadnaia rusistika)]; Tradition and Innovation. General Education and the Reintegration of the University (with Richard Kuhns). New York : Columbia University Press, 1977; The Rhetoric of an Ideological Novel [The Brothers Karamazov] // Literature and Society in Imperial Russia, 1800–1914. Stanford, CA : Stanford University Press, 1978; (ed.) Russian-ness. In Memoriam Rufus Mathewson. Ann Arbor : Ardis, 1984; Shakespeare and the Possessed // Dostoevsky Studies. 1984. Vol. 5. P. 63–69; The Genesis of The Brothers Karamazov: The Aesthetics, Ideology, and Psychology of Text Making. Evanston, IL : Northwestern University Press, 1990 [Russian translation: Genezis romana “Brat’ia Karamazovy”. Esteticheskie, ideologicheskie i psikhologicheskie aspekty sozdaniia teksta / transl. by L. N. Vysotskii. St. Petersburg : Akademicheskii proekt, 2003]; Dostoevsky // The Yale Handbook of Russian Literature. New Haven: Yale University Press, 1984; Dostoevskii and Psychology // The Cambridge Companion to Dostoevskii (Cambridge Companions to Literature) / ed. by W. J. Leatherbarrow. Cambridge : Cambridge University Press, 2002. P. 131–147; On Hermeneutic Humility // Twenty-five Year Commemoration to the Life of Georges Florovsky (1893–1979) / ed. by G. O. Mazur. New York : Semenenko Foundation, 2005; The Siuzhet of Crime and Punishment // Festschrift for Malcolm Jones / ed. by L. Milne et al. Nottingham, 2005; Universitetetskie seminary v Kolumbiiskom universitete. Znanie. Ponimanie. Umenie [Knowledge. Understanding. Skill]. 2005. No. 3. P. 51–54. (In Russ.; in English: The University Seminars at Columbia University); Introduction // Dostoevsky F. M. Demons / transl. by Robert A. Maguire. London : Penguin, 2007; The Trial of Mitya Karamazov // Dostoevsky's Brothers Karamazov: Art, Creativity, and Spirituality / ed. by Predrag Cicovacki, Maria Granik. Heidelberg : Universitätsverlag Winter, 2010. (Series: Beiträge zur slavischen Philologie, Bd. 16); Plots (Leonard Hastings Schoff Lectures) / with an introduction by R. F. Miller. New York : Columbia University Press, 2016. 200 p.

Bibliography: Dirda M. ‘Meanwhile, Back at the Ranch’ and Other Storytelling Tricks Explained in ‘Plots’. The Washington Post. 2016. May 12. [online] Available at: [archived in WebCite].

Nikolay V. Zakharov

Citation: Zakharov, N. V. Belknap Robert Louis. The World of Shakespeare: An Electronic Encyclopaedia. 2014–. [online] Available at: [archived in WebCite] (accessed

See also:

This page was last modified on: 14.05.2016.