Настоящият брой включва доклади, четени на международната научна конференция по повод 70-годишния юбилей на Института за литература, която се проведе през м. май 2018 г. Поради голямото хронологическо отстояние от конференцията някои от текстовете бяха междувременно публикувани – частично или изцяло, но целта на съставителите на броя бе да запазят автентичния формат, с който те бяха представени преди четири години.
Празникът е добър повод да припомним мисията, която е обвързала личната и творческата съдба на поколения талантливи учени с Института за литераратура към Българската академия на науките. А тя е – да изследваме и да творим литература; да създаваме литературна наука, съизмерима със световните научни критерии; да съхраняваме културната памет и да я превръщаме в разпознаваем, достоен за уважение знак на националната ни идентичност. Като литературен историк познавам добре и капризите на историята, и суетата на литературата. Зная колко подозрителни са те към юбилейните равносметки. Но именно затова се усъмнявам в добре известното мнение на Гео Милев, че юбилеят „не е никакво чудо, нито загадка, нито въпрос. Напротив – една съвсем твърда, положителна черна точка, която пада като литературен надгробен камък над юбиляра си“.
The text examines the form of a stage presentation of the con- version of the Bulgarian monarch and his people and the preservation of the Christian religion in three plays of the German-speaking Jesuit school theaters, as well as the presentation of this plot in the engraving of German artists from the 18th century.
The sponsorship during the Bulgarian Revival is part of an ancient, centuries-old tradition and is a kind of continuation of the donation from previous historical epochs. Religious books are an important part of the books published during the Renaissance. In the period 1806–1856, a total of 77 books were published with assistance, and 24 of them were religious (or 31%). Religious books “in simple Bulgarian language“ set and achieve the goal of maintaining, upholding and strengthening the religious identity of Bulgarians.
At the end of the 18th and the beginning of the 19th century, Christian values for the Bulgarian community in the Ottoman Empire were in crisis. Joakim Karchowski responded to the crisis with two sermons published in his book. With them he set the beginning of a new theology. We will call it conditionally “weekday theology”. The high examples of Christianity, the holy fathers and teachers of the Church at that time were difficult for the ordinary man to understand. This led Joakim Karchowski to orient his theology towards early Christianity – simpler and more understandable. In his time, thinking about the physical dominated over thinking about the spiritual. This mental attitude leads community to moral decay.
In this article research interest is focused on the large-scale manuscript heritage of Nayden Gerov (Fund 22 of the SS. Cyril and Methodius National Library – Bulgarian Historical Archive). There is a brief historical overview of the current scientific activities with a small part of 2000 archive units in the personal archive fund of the Revival writer, linguist, teacher and politician Nayden Gerov. In the focus of the study are presented two unexplored until now educational handwritten stories – Bulgarian and universal (F. 22, archive unit 603 and a. u. 604). The facts surrounding the two historical textbooks are systematized, and separate hypotheses have been made about the year of writing, the presence of more than one author, the place and the function in the context of the other published historical textbooks.
The article notices the first critical assumptions about “Ivanko“ dramatic work by Vasil Drumev. It also directs towards the detailed comment by Yordan Trifonov about the historiography sources which the author used to construct the plot. After Drumev develops the character of Ivanko, it becomes attractive to other Bulgarian writers, too. The emphasis of the text is upon the fact that after the work of the playwright from Bulgarian National Revival, the image of Ivanko becomes recognizable and discussed historiographic character. Due to Drumev’s writer finding and the scientific interest of Trifonov, the historiographic plot about him develops right after its literature one.
This article presents Dimitar Shishmanov’s views regarding the new role of the woman and the change in the way she is treated in the existing conservative society during the years 60s to 70s of the 19th century. He shares his opinion in his dramas, in a published brochure and in some lectures, and defends it in practice by his attitude towards his family, as well as in his forty-one letters to his wife, kept in his son’s (Prof. Ivan Shishmanov) archives.
Images of the wealthy and the poor men/women are determined by different factors. We are often prone to think that communist ideology had imposed their axiological polarization in which the poor is appreciated positively and the wealthy was anathemized. Nevertheless, similar approach is much older, it is fundamental for Christian doctrine, especially for Orthodoxy. Hence similar polarization could be traced in other Balkan Christian cultures that were less infected by communist ideology. Some scholars are inclined to connect the notions of wealth and poverty in Balkan cultures with the prolonged absence of “own” nobility and with some peculiar forms of rural community as “zadruga”.
Starting from such general premises this paper offers an overview of some representative images of rich men and poor men in Bulgarian culture, in some cases looking for parallels in other Balkan and East-European texts. Cinderella plot and the story about the abducted treasure as element of Bulgarian national mythology are some of the focuses of the study. The observations lead to the general conclusion that the discourse that idealize poverty and satirize wealth was dominant not only for 19th century.
The subjects of research are Bulgarian translations of “Anthem” by Ferenc Kölcsey, a true national song of Hungarians, which, among other things, lead to the historical characteristics of the text, related to the interpretation and assimilation of nationally coloured vocabulary, drаw paths of translatability. In a similar plan, focused are issues of the historical specificity in translation, which are presented mostly by certain lexical units – historical concepts and proper names (toponyms and antroponyms), related to the important issue of the realities in translation. Phenomena highlighting the specific historical moment (the present) but also the historical distance (the past) and the perspective (the future) are outlined in the meanings of the original text. Problems of foreign national identity stand out – historical and cultural, related to the spirit of the nation, more or less distant in time, which are reflected in the language of translation. The role of the translator is particularly important, he must bring the reader closer to the ideas, themes and the specific imagery of the source text with the means of poetic language. It is also necessary to take into account – especially in new translations – the reception attitudes, background knowledge, accumulated experience, the increased opportunities for expressing unknown aspects and concepts of foreign reality. This is also the way to overcome cognitive and cultural differences in translation.
The text works with the concept of canon in its sense of a set of ideas and cultural codes and their corresponding values and norms that unite a given community. The canon is based on a collectively generated self-concept of the Self, which the research traces in possible directions of development in its relations to the other and the stranger in several stories and humorous sketches by Mihalaki Georgiev, illustrating the humor-generating collisions, inconsistencies, discrepancies between the Self and the collective, between the different collectives in the Bulgarian socio-cultural transition between the XIX and XX centuries. The encounter and failure in communication between cultural canons at the turn of the century demonstrate a rich artistic potential that sets artistic patterns in our literary canon.
Article discusses the thesis of the novel character of Bai Ganyu, one of the most mysterious works in Bulgarian literature, which is commonly read as a cyclic collection of short stories/fеuilletons. Here the novel-epic potential in the work is argued mainly in the “vertical“, historicalgenealogical aspect, in the traditions of romance. In parallel, the article included in the theoretical debate on the essence of the novel genre in general, using some ideas of Russian formalism, in particular V. Shklovsky.
The article is part of an extensive study on Dr. Krastev’s text “Art and Religion” (1904). The philosopher criticizes, above all, the differences between these two “actions of the spirit”. Under the influence of the German psychological and philosophical-aesthetic school of the second half of the 19th century, he sees religion and art in the light of modern experimental psychology. Dr. Krastev approaches the much later psychoanalytic research of K. G. Jung and his followers. The present text stops both from deviations. His views on art have been analyzed and a brief critical reading of the theories of T. Lips, K. Groos and K. Lange about psychology of the aesthetic is interpreted by Dr. Krastev. Some connections of modern art with the views of a critic-philosopher are pointed out, as well as the lonely contribution of his study to humanities.
This article focuses on critical texts, including Ludmil Stoyanov’s, in “Hiperion” journal. The writer’s complex and contradictory transition from individualism and ultimate aesthetics to a new type of humanism, democracy and social engagement is considered. Stoyanov defines the new direction as neo-romanticism, but according to author’s thesis it can also be described as neo-pantheism.
The essay traces the shifts in the modelled projections of the foreign cultural space in the poetic works of Kiril Hristov. Here I offer a comparative reading of two poems dedicated to Germany but written more than twenty years apart. The country praised in the ode “Germany” from 1914 as the ideal state appears as a sinister rejection of its own values in the untitled poem from the collection of poetry “Breakwater” from 1937. It only appears to be so, since the inclusion of this second text in the collection “The whole of Bulgaria” (1942) under the title “German” and its translation into German would open a completely different direction for its possible interpretation. My study of documents contained in the Prague archives of Kiril Hristov confirms that the second text also has the dimensions of an ode and is undoubtedly dedicated to Nazi Germany under Hitler.
This contribution closely focuses on the features of the first, as of yet not published, Prague version of the Kiril Hristov’s drama “Maystor i dyavol” [The Master and the Devil] written in 1935–1936. The manuscript is stored in the Museum of Czech Literature Literary Archive in Prague (unprocessed collection “Christov Kiril”). Attention is paid, first, to the original legend about the builder of the Church of the Assumption of the Our Lady and St. Charles the Great in Karlov (Prague) which Christov knew from various sources, and second, to the genealogical aspects of the drama (the author himself called it “a Prague dramatic legend”). It then deals with the circumstances of the genesis of the drama and possible genetic relations to other literary texts of diverse provenience. It has been supposed that, apart from newer literary treatments of the drama, the plot of the drama was built on Karel Navrátil’s (1830–1887) treatise about the aforementioned church in Karlov, written in the 1870s. Recently it was discovered that Navrátil’s treatise was only a impulse for the theater play, but especially Kiril Hristov’s own drama built its architectonic and plot line construction and composition on an older Eduard (Edvard) Herold’s (1820–1895) historical novella “The Builder of Karlov. A Short Story From the Times of Charles IV”, published in 1853.
The text is part of a larger research which pertains to the study of the problems of acting in national dramaturgy during the 20th century in Bulgaria. The main focus is on the first performances of Bulgarian plays on the stage of the National theatre between the two world wars. A special accent is put on the already established as classical dramas of St. L. Kostov, Y. Yovkov, R. Stoyanov, G. Raychev and others. Although Bulgarian drama from that period in a way is domestic and petty bourgeois the actors created some of their best characters in national plays. According to the preserved evidences the experience of the first stage interpretations of “Golemanov”, “Albena”, “Boryana”, “Masters”, “Deer’s Kingdom” left deep traces into the minds of the spectators with the symbioses between the actor and the role as a result of the effort from the both sides of the performers and the audience during the whole theatrical process. The national drama, written “on the backs of the actors“, gives a lot of opportunities to the contemporaries for empathy and unforgettable moments.
The text announces a literary discovery that for a long time has been waiting for its research scholar – the novel “Peter”, which Konstantin Petkanov wrote in the last years of his life but which remained in a private archive for seventy years, unknown to the public. A manuscript, preserved thanks to the happy circumstance of the long-lasting intellectual dialogue between the writer and his brother, priest Dimitar Petkanov. Today we have the opportunity to read a message of great spiritual merit, whose genre vacillates between the essay and the novel, remaining extremely close to the evangelical text; it is faithful to the very narrative of the New Testament. The author of the above-mentioned text defines K. Petkanov’s work as fiction of the evangelical fact.
The study offers a reading of Georgi Raichev’s “Sin” through the Bible perspective and, on the other hand, through the history of prohibitions in the society for madness and mad people. It contains examples of that kind of characters in the Bulgarian and world literature. It searches also in classical criminalistics for explanation of physical characteristics of the potential criminals. And recalls one of the basic oppositions in modern Bulgarian literature – the village and the city as a model of living, culture, virtues and civilization.
The text examines three short stories from the classic Bulgarian children`s literature. The authors are Simeon Andreev, Grigor Ugarov and Angel Karaliichev. The plot of these short stories is the character`s dream before Christmas day and the child and bird relations. These dreams are unpleasant and even scary experience for the dreaming protagonist. From a psychoanalytic point of view, they are somehow satisfying desires, which is every child`s dream. The psychoanalysis introduces us to the analysis of these dreams and proves that the dreams for punishment are also fulfilment of wishes, not of urges, but of the criticizing, censoring and punishing instance in the spiritual life of the Super-ego. These scary experiences for the child contribute for better knowledge of its fragile, forming in the process of growing, Ego. They uncover the unconscious Id, Ego and Super-ego.
The present article places the modernity of women writers in its research focus and begins its observations with the rethinking question, what do we recognize as modernism in the late XIX – the first two decades of the XX century? The modernity of women writers remains unrecognizable to their contemporaries and even historically – the opportunity to create is aggravated by prejudices, restrictions and even prohibitions, this is a modernity beyond modernism, examined in the work of two unrecognized authors – Vela Blagoeva and Ana Karima, and both unrecognized as female presences in Bulgarian literary life, with problematic critical and collegial reception. The study highlights a number of modern ideas and concepts in each of the authors: in Vela Blagoeva – an original, non-model interpretation of historical figures, anti-racism, feminism, adventurous twists, in Karima – the first travelogue of a woman, enriched with the themes of social justice and female destiny, anti-stereotypical thinking and behavior.
The article dedicated to “In Paris. Sketches“ by Ana Karima, analyzed the poetics of the work. It transcends the boundaries of the traditional travelogue. Karima examines not only the historical sights of Paris, but introduces the readers to the social problems of the country, the position of women in society and the prostitution as an evil. Somewhat aside, but also related to the general issue, is what was written about Yavorov. Irony is leading. The comparison is with Aleko’s Bai Ganiu with a perspective on the behavior of Bulgarians abroad. The occasion is their deteriorating relationships.
What did European XIX and early XX century writers think about the femme fatale? This article examines modern incarnations of the biblical notion of the temptress in European literatures, mainly based on examples in Bulgarian and French literature, also with references to а Romanian example. More specifically, the article analyses works by Bulgarian writer Elin Pelin, as well as by French writers Jacques Casotte and Prosper Merimée, mentioning Romanian writer Ion Luca Caragiale, all of them having a contribution to the perpetuation of this ancient myth in European literature. The comparative reading introduces the “Samodiva” (a traditional Bulgarian name for forest nymph or fairy) as a relevant incarnation of the “fatal woman”.
The article highlights a symbolic absence, namely the lack of femininity in certain lyrical works by the poets Pavel Matev, Mladen Isaev and Vladimir Bashev. For this purpose it will proceed from clarifying femininity and its location, and will also clarify works by Peyo Yavorov, in which femininity corresponds directly to sexuality. In the article will be marked and sub-step to the symbolism of the female hair.
The Article emphasizes the image of the mother and motherhood in the context of Bulgarian prose after 2000, realized verry extream and painfuly manifested in that kind of works. Locked up in the poisonous circle of “the heardity of trauma“ the woman in this works tries to get over the “mother matrix“, because she is burn with it. The selected works are representative of the visualization of the so called “female perversion“ and one of the forms of its manifestation is “perverted motherhood“.
The text “About Bulgarian Meanings of Avant-garde and Avant-gardism in Literary Culture“ maintains that these two terms are fundamentally different in meaning. We can speak of avant-garde when a certain complex cultural – and not only literary – phenomenon is attached to history precisely as a cultural term (for instance, Russian revolutionary avant-garde, First and Second Polish avant-garde, etc.). Whereas we denote as avant-gardism the radical manifestations of some of the late modernisms (surrealism, Constructivism, futurism, Dadaism, etc.), seen in their completeness, somehow converged. As far as Bulgarian literature is concerned, we can speak of avant-gardism in reference to the 20s and the early 30s of the twentieth century. Yet, the only really Bulgarian phenomenon that can be defined as avant-garde is the marginalized over the years, Yambol-originated avant-garde of the early 20s. In addition, in the most recent several decades, we have been witnessing a certain not-too-well-defined neo-avant-gardism.
In the article are shortly mentioned the main motives of the poetry of Atanas Dalchev of his art and philosophical discoveries, which led to the spiritual and aesthetic changes in the consciousness of his contemporaries and the tangible influence of his talent on the development of Bulgarian Literature. I would like to highlight that his poetry specially his “Fragmentsˮ and his critical texts express the whole vision of a writer “place of the person in the worldˮ. Constant search of the seсret of being of Atanas Dalchev can also be achieved thanks to his expressive philosophical motives. He intends to conceptualize the artistic world and give him a philosophical depth. The world or space is full of important things: world which tells about the eternal and sad story of existing here and now. At the same time the poetry of Atanas Dalchev like it is mentioned in the article aspires to the theme of the devil. This is why we pay attention to the dual influence and mystic elements in his poetry and also philosophical and existential reflection on his life. In the article are analysed some peculiarities of expression of Atanas Dalchev of poetic texts in Ukrainian taking into account its specific features and significance in the development of Bulgarian poetic creativity.
The survey focuses on the Russian émigré spiritual and literary existence in Bulgaria during the period after the Bolshevik revolution in 1917 – an existence fed by concern in the fate of Russian culture in post-revolutionary, soviet Russia. It speculates on the possibilities of creating culture and literature in emigration, on the meaning of the creative act when the artist is forcibly deprived of his homeland and his readers. The research work has taken notice of connections with the local culture and the natives not typical of the Russian Diaspora elsewhere. Russian writers and scientists show keen interest in researching our culture, in the similarities between the two nations’ spiritual lives and in parallel cultural phenomena. They turned out to be favorably disposed toward artistic and scientific research of Bulgarian history, culture and literature, which is easily recognizable when reviewing both emigrants’ and national book publishing and periodicals. Their translation of Bulgarian folklore, poetry and prose are essentially important for spreading Bulgarian works and culture to different parts of the world. At the time, Russian emigrants’ cultural invasion in Bulgaria was perceived by Bulgarian authors and intellectuals as something positive, as a catalyst for development of national literary and cultural processes and furthermore as an episode of a pre-existing tendency of Russian cultural influence penetrating Bulgarian reality. This unforeseen meeting with Russian culture, represented by Russian writers, dramatists and migrant-scientists creates many opportunities for positive impact on Bulgaria’s cultural and literary life.
The text presents the possibilities of applying a microhistorical approach to the literature of the communist era in Bulgaria. The article emphasizes that literary microhistory pays attention not only to what and how the author writes, but also to what he does with and around his texts, who reads and understands them, and how they enter into dialogue with other texts and contexts. The article highlights the differences between a scandal and a case, with an emphasis on the opportunities provided by the study through the case in the studies of literature from the period of the Peoples‘ Republic of Bulgaria.
The text tries to sketch very briefly the significance and peaks in the literature of Bulgarian political emigration. It absolutely agrees with the statement of the writer Dimitar Bochev that we must finally consider what was created by emigration as a “natural part of the national organism“. The essay traces the history of emigrant waves and their contribution to our liberation from Bolshevik dogmas and the urge to write a new, non-ideological history of our literature, in which the emigrants starting from Grigoriy Tsamblak to Georgi Markov and Krasimir Damyanov to be equally present, not forgetting the internal emigrants such as Konstantin Pavlov and Nikolay Kanchev.
This article aims to examine some aspects of the attitude to wellknown historic facts as presented in Milen Ruskov’s “Summit” („Възвишение“, 2011) and Alek Popov’s second novel on the lives and adventures of the Palaveevi sisters („Сестри Палавееви – по пътя към новия свят“, 2017). The former book deals with the period of Bulgarian national revival in the 19th century and with the controversy surrounding the figure of Dimitar Obshti. The latter novel narrates the tale of the partisan resistance of 1940s. Both periods have a very special and important meaning in Bulgarian history and for the Bulgarians. Ruskov’s novel can be read in close dialogue with the romantic and Kantian idea of the sublime. The novel of A. Popov mimics the story lines of the chronicles, approved by the Bulgarian Socialist Party, about the communist resistance and its struggle with both fascism and capitalist class society, among which is I. Hadzhimarchev’s “The Shepherd Kalitko” („Овчарчето Калитко“, 1946). At times Popov’s novel reads as a classic comic book in the style of Batman, Superman and Wonder Woman. M. Ruskov and A. Popov rewrite and deconstruct the myths surrounding both periods in Bulgarian history, and reincorporate both the National revival and the partisan movement in the contemporary ever-changing outlook on the country’s shared political, literary and historical background. The question is, can literature do what both politics and history proper have failed so far to accomplish, to alter and still preserve the memory of past events? The paper uses texts of E. Fromm, W. Benjamin, B. Latour and D. Matravers.
The article reviews and analyzes the ways of representing historical topics in the contemporary fiction of Central and Eastern Europe (Poland, Ukraine, Czech Republic, Slovakia). After significant turn from the western-oriented consumerist culture of the 90s and early 2000s to the search for new formulas of national identities in the late 2000s the authors from this region began to rethink the historical material. Three ways of this rethinking (and correspondingly, three groups of texts) can be outlined: the first, most analytical, innovative, and corresponding to Barbara Misztal’s „public history“; the second, intended to strengthen official national historical narratives; and the third, using clichés and stereotypes of popular culture to subvert conservative, isolationist rhetoric of current political establishment.
The theory of intertextuality shifted the focus of the literary scene from the literary influence towards the (critical) dialogue with tradition, and not only the literary one, but also the cultural one. Intertextual dialogue is a meeting/contact, a replica, a quote, a reminiscence, but also a conflict between two views of the world, between two discourses and two types of poetics. This conflict can take the form of parody, the grotesque, travesty, and carnivalization. Intertextual dialogue represents at least two authors’ perspectives and implies a temporal, cultural and stylistic distance. The author updates, but also revises the literary (archive, memory, oblivion) and cultural memory (collective, conscious, institutional, unconscious). It can be given in the form of quotation, remake, and evocative replica (zero dialogicity), but also (in the form of) revision and irony (high dialogicity). Poetry, traditionally defined as a monologic genre, practices intertextual dialogue as a strategy of performative reminiscence. Modernist and postmodernist intertextuality in contemporary Bulgarian poetry are a reflection of the local and regional socio-cultural and aesthetic environment. This interpretive essay makes a typology of intertextual dialogue in contemporary Bulgarian poetry with modernist and postmodernist characteristics: Lyubomir Levchev, Alexander Shurbanov, Georgi Gospodinov, Roman Kisyov, and Lyudmila Mindova.
Bulgarian literature in the distant European North is unknown for both Swedish readers and literary scholars. The ‘real’ readers of our native literature in Sweden are the students, who participate in the courses in Bulgarian at Uppsala University. By analyzing exams, papers, abstracts, analyses, and coursework, written between 2014 and 2017, we can understand how and what they discover in the Bulgarian literature. Their literary expedition suggests that the perception of a literary text is strongly related to the place and time at which it is read. The article argues also that the interpretation of one and the same literary work depends on the readers’ individual situation.
The paper delineates and examines the distortion and demolishment of classical literary concepts and approaches and their replacement in the postcolonial studies and some other similar-sounding paradigms with designations, which are their badly camouflaged and distorted replicas. As a consequence, these replicas are used in the service of various non-literary and non-scientific purposes. Three strategies of camouflaging and distortion are under scrutiny in the paper: “the strategy of political correctness“, “the strategy of conceptual vampirization“, “the strategy of deformed shell“.
Osip Mandelstam’s criticism has been studied much less than his poetry and life. This article sheds some light on three complex ideas in Mandelstam’s critical texts viewed as a whole: synchrony and diachrony, word and language, and dialogicity. Taken together, these three areas form what I term Mandelstam’s cultural and literary holism. One of my leading ideas is that this criticism is imbued with implicit phenomenology. This type of philosophizing also influences Mandelstam’s critical style — it does not define but describes and narrates. This explains why my effort to “translate” Mandelstam’s critical ideas into a stricter scholarly idiom by necessity uses long quotes. The study concludes that Mandelstam’s holism is utopian and idealistic because it thinks the cultural past can be reenacted in the cultural present. Today, in its totality, Mandelstam’s holism is somewhat archaic because it is an apparatus by which a subjective mind attempts to control all meanings. Yet, many aspects of this holism, such as dialogicity, reader’s activity, and the eclectic accumulation of various cultural strata, are still viable in our contemporary postmodern thinking and practices. Initially, the study was written in English in December 1996 and was reworked in Bulgarian in October 2022.
This article attempts to outline the contours of a critique of translation that does not focus on the “losses”, the inaccuracies of translations in relation to the original, but rather investigates the co-rrespondence between the originеl text (the so-called original) and the text continued through translation into another language (the translation), the way the translator – as a writing reader, i.e. the only reader who turns his reading into writing – responds to the call of the text.