|Born||Viktor Vladimirovich Khlebnikov
9 November [O.S. 28 October] 1885
Malye Derbety, Astrakhan Governorate, Russian Empire
|Died||June 28, 1922
|Pen name||Velimir Khlebnikov|
|Literary movement||Russian Futurism|
Viktor Vladimirovich Khlebnikov, better known by the pen name Velimir Khlebnikov (Russian: Велими́р Хле́бников; IPA: [vʲɪlʲɪˈmʲir ˈxlʲebnʲɪkəf]; 9 November [O.S. 28 October] 1885 – 28 June 1922), was a poet and playwright, a central part of the Russian Futurist movement, but his work and influence stretch far beyond it.
Viktor Vladimirovich Khlebnikov was born in 1885 in Malye Derbety, Astrakhan Governorate, Russian Empire ( in present-day Kalmykia). He was of Armenian and Zaporozhian Cossack descent. He moved to Kazan, where he attended school. He then attended school in Saint Petersburg. He eventually quit school to become a full-time writer.
Khlebnikov belonged to Hylaea, the most significant Russian Futurist group, (along with Vladimir Mayakovsky, Aleksei Kruchenykh, David Burliuk, and Benedikt Livshits), but had already written many significant poems before the Futurist movement in Russia had taken shape. Among his contemporaries, he was regarded as "a poet's poet" (Mayakovsky referred to him as a "poet for producers") and a maverick genius. Khlebnikov was involved in the publication of A Slap in the Face of Public Taste in 1912, which was a critical component of the Russian futurism poetry.
Khlebnikov is known for poems such as "Incantation by Laughter", "Bobeobi Sang The Lips", “The Grasshopper” (all 1908-9), “Snake Train” (1910), the prologue to the Futurist opera Victory over the Sun (1913), dramatic works such as “Death’s Mistake” (1915), prose works such as “Ka” (1915), and the so-called ‘super-tale’ (сверхповесть) “Zangezi”, a sort of ecstatic drama written partly in invented languages of gods and birds. He published Selected Poems with Postscript, 1907–1914 circa 1914. Kazimir Malevich and Pavel Filonov co-illustrated it.
In his work, Khlebnikov experimented with the Russian language, drawing upon its roots to invent huge numbers of neologisms, and finding significance in the shapes and sounds of individual letters of Cyrillic. Along with Kruchenykh, he originated zaum.
He wrote futurological essays about such things as the possible evolution of mass communication ("The Radio of the Future") and transportation and housing ("Ourselves and Our Buildings"). He described a world in which people live and travel about in mobile glass cubicles that can attach themselves to skyscraper-like frameworks, and in which all human knowledge can be disseminated to the world by radio and displayed automatically on giant book-like displays at streetcorners.
In his last years, Khlebnikov became fascinated by Slavic mythology and Pythagorean numerology, and drew up long "Tables of Destiny" decomposing historical intervals and dates into functions of the numbers 2 and 3.
Khlebnikov died of paralysis while a guest in the house of his friend Pyotr Miturich near Kresttsy, in June, 1922. A minor planet 3112 Velimir discovered by Soviet astronomer Nikolai Stepanovich Chernykh in 1977 is named after him.
- Long poems
- 1910: “Snake Train”
- 1913: Prologue to the Futurist opera Victory over the Sun
- 1912: The Little Devil
- 1912: Teacher and Student. Conversation
- 1914: Roar! Gauntlets, 1908–1914
- 1915: Death’s Mistake
- 1922: Zangezi (сверхповесть)
- Radio Project
- The Radio of the Future, 1921
- Also romanized Velemir and Chlebnikov, Hlebnikov, or Xlebnikov.
- James R. Russell, "The Black Dervish of Armenian Futurism," Journal of Armenian Studies, 10
- "Selected Poems with Postscript, 1907–1914". World Digital Library. 1914. Retrieved 2013-09-28.
- http://books.google.com/books?hl=ru&q=3111+Misuzu+1977. Missing or empty
- "Creations, 1906–1908". World Digital Library. 1912. Retrieved 2013-09-29.
- "Teacher and Student. Conversation". World Digital Library. 1912. Retrieved 2013-09-29.
- "Roar! Gauntlets, 1908–1914". World Digital Library. 1914. Retrieved 2013-09-28.
- Khlebnikov, Velimir, The King of Time (Schmidt, Paul, trans.; Douglas, Charlotte, ed.) Cambridge, Massachusetts: Harvard University Press, 1990. ISBN 0-674-50516-6
- MacKay, John. Inscription and Modernity: From Wordsworth to Mandelstam. Bloomington: Indiana University Press, 2006. ISBN 0-253-34749-1
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to Velimir Khlebnikov.|
|Wikisource has original works written by or about:
- 'Velimir Khlebnikov and ‘Displacement’ as Poetics' in Cordite Poetry Review (English)
- Selected Poems by Khlebnikov (Bilingual)
- Listen to an interpretation of Khlebnikov's "Radio of the Future" at Acousmata music blog
- English translations of 5 poems
- Includes English translations of five poems, 113–117
- English translations of five poems
- English translations of nine poems