Dr James Rann

  • Lecturer (School of Modern Languages & Cultures)

Biography

While I am officially James Rann, I am most often known as Jamie Rann and most of my less academic work has appeared under that name. It's like having a very bad secret identity. 

I'm lucky that I've been able to turn my life-long interest in the languages and cultures of the Russian Empire, Soviet Union and their successor states into not just one job, but many, and as well as being a researcher and teacher, I have worked as a translator, journalist, literary agent and more. 

Before joining the University of Glasgow, I worked at the universities of Birmingham, Oxford, Queen Mary University of London, and UCL, where I completed my doctoral research at the School of Slavonic and East European Studies.

Until I succumbed to the irresistible glamour of academia, I worked on different projects related to contemporary Eastern Europe and Eurasia. I have translated novels, short stories and poems and I translated and edited Subkultura, a book on Russian subcultures. I was an editor of The Calvert Journal, an online magazine about East European culture, and was previously a trustee of the Calvert 22 Foundation. Articles I have written have appeared in The Guardian, the Times Literary Supplement and on the NYU All the Russias blog. 

Research interests

At the core of my research is an interest in Russophone modernist literature and especially Futurism in the Russian Empire and the Soviet Union. My first book, The Unlikely Futurist (2020) investigated the question of originality in avant-garde poetry written in Russian between 1910 and 1930 — how can writers ever hope to create something genuinely new? — and how this affects the way they think about history, identity and society. 

In that same late-imperial / early-Soviet context, I've also written on topics such as lifewriting, nonsense and the interface of literature and architecture. More recently, I have examined the influence of Russian modernism, via translation into Scots, on Scottish literature.

I've always combined this fascination with 20th-century creativity with an interest in the present. Previously, this has meant things like exploring Russophone digital cultures and literary translation, but Russia's full-scale invasion of Ukraine has reoriented my priorities. I am currently coming to the end of two projects devised in response to the war:

I remain, however, committed to the value of innovative, non-instrumental research on Russophone culture. As such, I am actively exploring major research projects around intertextuality in Russian poetry and around the interconnections between dress, identity and culture in the early Soviet Union.  

 

Publications

List by: Type | Date

Jump to: 2024 | 2023 | 2022 | 2021 | 2020 | 2019 | 2018 | 2017 | 2015 | 2014 | 2013 | 2012 | 2011
Number of items: 44.

2024

Rann, J. and Mackinnon, K. (2024) Власними словами = In Our Own Words: Multilingual Translation Workshops. UNESCO RILA Podcast Episode 67. [Audio]

Rann, J. (2024) Russian poetry and the rewilding of Scottish literature: 1917 to the present. In: Maguire, M. and McAteer, C. (eds.) Translating Russian Literature in the Global Context. Open Book Publishers: Cambridge, pp. 253-280. ISBN 9781800649859 (doi: 10.11647/obp.0340.15)

2023

Rann, J. (2023) Stitches in time: Maiakovskii’s overcoat and temporal self-fashioning in the Soviet Union. In: Time and Material Culture: Rethinking Soviet Temporalities. Routledge. (Accepted for Publication)

Rann, J. (2023) Ukrainians Wha Hae. [Website]

2022

Rann, J. (2022) Subcurrents: The nuances of Russian responses to James Joyce. Times Literary Supplement(6198), [Book Review]

Rann, J. (2022) How swearing became a weapon of resistance for Ukrainians. Guardian, 13 Apr.

2021

Rann, J. (2021) Signs and wonders: two approaches to nonsense in Russia. In: Barton, A. and Williams, J. (eds.) The Edinburgh Companion to Nonsense. Edinburgh University Press: Edinburgh. ISBN 9781474423847

Donovan, V., Rann, J. and Tsymbalyuk, D. (2021) Slavic Studies Goes Public: Who? What? Why? Where? When? Modern Languages Open, 1, 4. (doi: 10.3828/mlo.v0i0.349)

Rann, J. (2021) Does impact reinforce the boundary between the academy and the world? Modern Languages Open, 1, 11. (doi: 10.3828/mlo.v0i0.355)

Rann, J. (2021) Clothes, costume, and fashion in Russian modernism. In: Rabinowitz, P. (ed.) Oxford Research Encyclopedia of Literature. Oxford University Press. ISBN 9780190201098 (doi: 10.1093/acrefore/9780190201098.013.1244)

2020

Rann, J. (2020) The Unlikely Futurist: Pushkin and the Invention of Originality in Russian Modernism. Series: Publications of the Wisconsin center for Pushkin studies. University of Wisconsin Press: Madison, Wisconsin. ISBN 9780299328108

2019

Rann, J. (2019) Happy endings. Times Literary Supplement(6070), [Book Review]

Rann, J. (2019) Review of Katharine Hodgson, Joanne Shelton, Alexandra Smith, Twentieth-Century Russian Poetry: Reinventing the Canon. Modern Language Review, 114(1), pp. 176-177. (doi: 10.5699/modelangrevi.114.1.0176)[Book Review]

2018

Rann, J. (2018) Shimmering substance: Short stories shedding light on the career of a rediscovered author. Times Literary Supplement(6031), [Book Review]

Rann, J. (2018) The Rehearsals by Vladimir Sharov. Times Literary Supplement, [Book Review]

2017

Rann, J. (2017) Russian Absurd by Daniiil Karms. Times Literary Supplement, [Book Review]

Rann, J. (2017) Invisible, angry: some sights of the Russian populace. Times Literary Supplement, [Book Review]

Rann, J. (2017) Living as a legend: Modernist theatricality and Stalinist self-fashioning in the lifewriting of Vasilii Kamenskii. Modern Language Review, 112(4), pp. 953-980. (doi: 10.5699/modelangrevi.112.4.0953)

Rann, J. (2017) Inferiority Complex: Why the New Film Adaptation of Lady Macbeth is Too Subtle for its Own Good. [Website]

Rann, J. (2017) How to make a Russian salad: food, art and patriotism on the internet in Russia. Digital Icons: Studies in Russian, Eurasian and Central European New Media, 16, pp. 51-78.

Rann, J. (2017) Vladimir M. by Robert Littell. Times Literary Supplement, [Book Review]

Rann, J. (2017) Voiceless Vanguard: The Infantilist Aesthetic of the Russian Avant-Garde by Sara Pankenier Weld. Modern Language Review, 112(1), pp. 289-291. (doi: 10.5699/modelangrevi.112.1.0289)[Book Review]

Troitskii, A. (2017) Subkultura: Stories of Youth and Resistance in Russia 1815-2017 [Editor and Translator]. [Scholarly Editions]

2015

Rann, J. (2015) Evil empire: why is the post-Soviet world so obsessed with Star Wars? [Website]

Rann, J. (2015) Chiselled features: the hard-nosed politics of Moscow’s St Vladimir statue. [Website]

Rann, J. (2015) Go forth and multiply: notes from an accidental fertility tour of Central Asia. [Website]

Rann, J. (2015) Islands in the stream: the strange charm that for centuries has been luring people to Solovki. [Website]

2014

Rann, J. (2014) Universal Pictures: Zvyagintsev, Dostoevsky and the Politics of the Particular. [Website]

Rann, J. (2014) Beauty and the east: allure and exploitation in post-Soviet ruin photography. [Website]

Rann, J. (2014) Manifesta destiny: what does the St Petersburg-set art biennial mean for Russia? [Website]

Rann, J. (2014) Narkomfin: can a utopian housing project survive in modern Moscow? [Website]

Rann, J. (2014) Taboo Pushkin: Topics, Texts, Interpretations by Alyssa Dinega Gillespie; The Poetics of Impudence and Intimacy in the Age of Pushkin by Joe Peschio; Pushkin's Historical Imagination by Svetlana Evdokimova. Modern Language Review, 109(2), pp. 584-586. (doi: 10.5699/modelangrevi.109.2.0584)[Book Review]

Starobinets, A. and Rann, J. (2014) The Icarus Gland and Other Stories of Metamorphosis [Translator]. Skyscraper: Newbold on Stour. ISBN 9780955181054

2013

Fedorova, A. and Rann, J. (2013) A day on the Moyka, St Petersburg, Russia. [Website]

Rann, J. (2013) Meanwhile, in Russia: Buzzfeed, Russia and the west. [Website]

Rann, J. (2013) Double trouble: conceptualist masters John Baldessari and Ilya Kabakov at Moscow Biennale. [Website]

Rann, J. (2013) Letter from the fascinating, forbidden land of Dagestan. [Website]

2012

Reyes, H., Rann, J. and Samsonova, M. (Eds.) (2012) St Petersburg. Series: City-pick. Oxygen Books. ISBN 9780956787620

Bykov, D. and Rann, J. (2012) Mozharovo [Translator]. In: Shubina, E.D. and Bouis, A. W. (eds.) Read Russia! An Anthology of New Voices. Read Russia: New York.

Kostin, P. and Rann, J. (2012) It’s Time [Translator]. Urban Romantics: London. ISBN 9781907832185

Rann, J. (2012) Building the Revolution: Soviet Art and Architecture 1915-35 at the Royal Academy [Exhibition Review]. Opticon 1826, 12,

Rann, J. (2012) Maiakovskii and the mobile monument: alternatives to iconoclasm in Russian culture. Slavic Review, 71(4), pp. 766-791. (doi: 10.5612/slavicreview.71.4.0766)

Starobinets, A. and Rann, J. (2012) The Living [Translator]. Hesperus Press: London. ISBN 9781843913771

2011

Carr, D. and Rann, J. (Eds.) (2011) A New Chapter, Part 2: Russian Writing from the 21st Century. Series: Rossica. Academia Rossica: London. ISBN 9781905345083

This list was generated on Thu Jul 11 14:00:07 2024 BST.
Number of items: 44.

Articles

Rann, J. (2022) How swearing became a weapon of resistance for Ukrainians. Guardian, 13 Apr.

Donovan, V., Rann, J. and Tsymbalyuk, D. (2021) Slavic Studies Goes Public: Who? What? Why? Where? When? Modern Languages Open, 1, 4. (doi: 10.3828/mlo.v0i0.349)

Rann, J. (2021) Does impact reinforce the boundary between the academy and the world? Modern Languages Open, 1, 11. (doi: 10.3828/mlo.v0i0.355)

Rann, J. (2017) Living as a legend: Modernist theatricality and Stalinist self-fashioning in the lifewriting of Vasilii Kamenskii. Modern Language Review, 112(4), pp. 953-980. (doi: 10.5699/modelangrevi.112.4.0953)

Rann, J. (2017) How to make a Russian salad: food, art and patriotism on the internet in Russia. Digital Icons: Studies in Russian, Eurasian and Central European New Media, 16, pp. 51-78.

Rann, J. (2012) Building the Revolution: Soviet Art and Architecture 1915-35 at the Royal Academy [Exhibition Review]. Opticon 1826, 12,

Rann, J. (2012) Maiakovskii and the mobile monument: alternatives to iconoclasm in Russian culture. Slavic Review, 71(4), pp. 766-791. (doi: 10.5612/slavicreview.71.4.0766)

Books

Rann, J. (2020) The Unlikely Futurist: Pushkin and the Invention of Originality in Russian Modernism. Series: Publications of the Wisconsin center for Pushkin studies. University of Wisconsin Press: Madison, Wisconsin. ISBN 9780299328108

Starobinets, A. and Rann, J. (2014) The Icarus Gland and Other Stories of Metamorphosis [Translator]. Skyscraper: Newbold on Stour. ISBN 9780955181054

Kostin, P. and Rann, J. (2012) It’s Time [Translator]. Urban Romantics: London. ISBN 9781907832185

Starobinets, A. and Rann, J. (2012) The Living [Translator]. Hesperus Press: London. ISBN 9781843913771

Book Sections

Rann, J. (2024) Russian poetry and the rewilding of Scottish literature: 1917 to the present. In: Maguire, M. and McAteer, C. (eds.) Translating Russian Literature in the Global Context. Open Book Publishers: Cambridge, pp. 253-280. ISBN 9781800649859 (doi: 10.11647/obp.0340.15)

Rann, J. (2023) Stitches in time: Maiakovskii’s overcoat and temporal self-fashioning in the Soviet Union. In: Time and Material Culture: Rethinking Soviet Temporalities. Routledge. (Accepted for Publication)

Rann, J. (2021) Signs and wonders: two approaches to nonsense in Russia. In: Barton, A. and Williams, J. (eds.) The Edinburgh Companion to Nonsense. Edinburgh University Press: Edinburgh. ISBN 9781474423847

Rann, J. (2021) Clothes, costume, and fashion in Russian modernism. In: Rabinowitz, P. (ed.) Oxford Research Encyclopedia of Literature. Oxford University Press. ISBN 9780190201098 (doi: 10.1093/acrefore/9780190201098.013.1244)

Bykov, D. and Rann, J. (2012) Mozharovo [Translator]. In: Shubina, E.D. and Bouis, A. W. (eds.) Read Russia! An Anthology of New Voices. Read Russia: New York.

Book Reviews

Rann, J. (2022) Subcurrents: The nuances of Russian responses to James Joyce. Times Literary Supplement(6198), [Book Review]

Rann, J. (2019) Happy endings. Times Literary Supplement(6070), [Book Review]

Rann, J. (2019) Review of Katharine Hodgson, Joanne Shelton, Alexandra Smith, Twentieth-Century Russian Poetry: Reinventing the Canon. Modern Language Review, 114(1), pp. 176-177. (doi: 10.5699/modelangrevi.114.1.0176)[Book Review]

Rann, J. (2018) Shimmering substance: Short stories shedding light on the career of a rediscovered author. Times Literary Supplement(6031), [Book Review]

Rann, J. (2018) The Rehearsals by Vladimir Sharov. Times Literary Supplement, [Book Review]

Rann, J. (2017) Russian Absurd by Daniiil Karms. Times Literary Supplement, [Book Review]

Rann, J. (2017) Invisible, angry: some sights of the Russian populace. Times Literary Supplement, [Book Review]

Rann, J. (2017) Vladimir M. by Robert Littell. Times Literary Supplement, [Book Review]

Rann, J. (2017) Voiceless Vanguard: The Infantilist Aesthetic of the Russian Avant-Garde by Sara Pankenier Weld. Modern Language Review, 112(1), pp. 289-291. (doi: 10.5699/modelangrevi.112.1.0289)[Book Review]

Rann, J. (2014) Taboo Pushkin: Topics, Texts, Interpretations by Alyssa Dinega Gillespie; The Poetics of Impudence and Intimacy in the Age of Pushkin by Joe Peschio; Pushkin's Historical Imagination by Svetlana Evdokimova. Modern Language Review, 109(2), pp. 584-586. (doi: 10.5699/modelangrevi.109.2.0584)[Book Review]

Edited Books

Reyes, H., Rann, J. and Samsonova, M. (Eds.) (2012) St Petersburg. Series: City-pick. Oxygen Books. ISBN 9780956787620

Carr, D. and Rann, J. (Eds.) (2011) A New Chapter, Part 2: Russian Writing from the 21st Century. Series: Rossica. Academia Rossica: London. ISBN 9781905345083

Scholarly Editions

Troitskii, A. (2017) Subkultura: Stories of Youth and Resistance in Russia 1815-2017 [Editor and Translator]. [Scholarly Editions]

Audio

Rann, J. and Mackinnon, K. (2024) Власними словами = In Our Own Words: Multilingual Translation Workshops. UNESCO RILA Podcast Episode 67. [Audio]

Website

Rann, J. (2023) Ukrainians Wha Hae. [Website]

Rann, J. (2017) Inferiority Complex: Why the New Film Adaptation of Lady Macbeth is Too Subtle for its Own Good. [Website]

Rann, J. (2015) Evil empire: why is the post-Soviet world so obsessed with Star Wars? [Website]

Rann, J. (2015) Chiselled features: the hard-nosed politics of Moscow’s St Vladimir statue. [Website]

Rann, J. (2015) Go forth and multiply: notes from an accidental fertility tour of Central Asia. [Website]

Rann, J. (2015) Islands in the stream: the strange charm that for centuries has been luring people to Solovki. [Website]

Rann, J. (2014) Universal Pictures: Zvyagintsev, Dostoevsky and the Politics of the Particular. [Website]

Rann, J. (2014) Beauty and the east: allure and exploitation in post-Soviet ruin photography. [Website]

Rann, J. (2014) Manifesta destiny: what does the St Petersburg-set art biennial mean for Russia? [Website]

Rann, J. (2014) Narkomfin: can a utopian housing project survive in modern Moscow? [Website]

Fedorova, A. and Rann, J. (2013) A day on the Moyka, St Petersburg, Russia. [Website]

Rann, J. (2013) Meanwhile, in Russia: Buzzfeed, Russia and the west. [Website]

Rann, J. (2013) Double trouble: conceptualist masters John Baldessari and Ilya Kabakov at Moscow Biennale. [Website]

Rann, J. (2013) Letter from the fascinating, forbidden land of Dagestan. [Website]

This list was generated on Thu Jul 11 14:00:07 2024 BST.

Supervision

I am currently supervising Liudmila Tomanek in her PhD project on the translation of Svetlana Alexievich's polyphonic prose, and Sophia Robertson for her PhD project analysing the speeches of Vladimir Putin. 

I would welcome the chance to work with other post-graduate resarchers working in many different areas. In particular, I'd be eager to collaborate on projects related to:

  • Early Soviet literature and culture
  • Russophone literature, especially poetry 
  • Clothes and culture in the Russian Empire and Soviet Union
  • Literary translation from/into Russian.

I have co-supervised postgraduate projects about memory in contemporary Russian media, French and Soviet avant-garde writing, and on translation.

I previously supervised a PhD project comparing Osip Mandelshtam and Hugh MacDiarmid.

Teaching

I teach on a wide number of courses in Russian culture and language, including:

  • Russian language for beginners
  • Russian Culture 2
  • Translation from Russian
  • MSc in Translation Studies
  • Brave New Worlds: Russian Culture in the Age of Revolution

Elsewhere in my teaching I cover topics such as fairy tales, Soviet cinema, and concepts of space in global modernism.

Additional information

I am the co-convenor of Histories and Subjectivities research clusters at the School of Modern Languages and Cultures and of the Modernism, Avant-Garde and Twentieth-Century Literature and Culture cluster in the College of Arts. 

I am a member of the Advisory Board for the Edwin Morgan Trust.