Elena Kostioukovitch

Elena Alexandrovna Kostioukovitch (Елена Александровна Костюкович) was born in 1958 in Kyiv. She is a Russian and Italian citizen, an essayist and literary translator and winner of numerous literary awards, including Best Translation of the Year in the USSR (1988), Zoil (1999), Grinzane Cavour Moscow (2004). Since 1988 Elena has been working as editor of a Russian series for Bompiani Publishers, and of a Russian series by Sperling&Kupfer and Frassinelli (1996–2008), as well as a promoter of Russian culture in Italy and of Italian culture in Russia through different festivals and events like Mantua Book Festival, Cultural Days in Auditorium (Rome), Prima Vista Festival (Tartu, Estonia), Science Festival in Genoa, Montpellier Literary Festival. Kostioukovitch’s interest in literature dates back to her childhood years. She is a granddaughter of the Russian writer and painter Leonid Volynski.

At the age of 17 Kostioukovitch entered the M.V. Lomonosov Moscow State University, where she studied in the Philological Faculty in the Department of Italian Literature under the guidance of distinguished Prof. Galina Muravieva and of the Dean of the Russian Poetry and Translation Dept. Prof. Eugeny Solonovich. She graduated with honors from the University in 1980, Italian Seicento having been the focus of her degree, her thesis was devoted to L’Adone by Giovanbattista Marino, and her Ph.D. thesis to Italian Baroque Aesthetics. Between 1980 and 1988 she was a head of the Italian department of “Contemporary Foreign Fiction” magazine. She translated Orlando Furioso by Ludovico Ariosto, Through the Lens of Aristotle by Emanuele Tesauro, and Scherzi by Giuseppe Giusti. She annotated the Russian Edition of “The Betrothed” by Alessandro Manzoni. She has also translated a number of modern Italian poets: Amelia Rosselli, Vittorio Magrelli, Pier Paolo Pasolini, Roberto Roversi, Rocco Scotellaro, Salvatore Quasimodo, Vittorio Sereni. She distinguished herself with a translation of Umberto Eco’s The Name of the Rose in 1988.

From 1989 until 2008 Elena taught Russian Literature and Art of the Literary Translation at Trento University, then she moved to the University of Trieste and the University of Milan. As a journalist she contributes regularly to several Italian news outlets L’Espresso and Panorama ,and Russian ones Itoghi, Ezhenedel’nyj ZhurnalNovaja Model. She was also member of Memorial International until its dissolution in February 2022 by order of the Supreme Court of the Russian Federation.