Issue 3, 2015

Литературата: привилегировани гласове, потиснати гласове

Катя Станева, За маргинализираните гласове и езици на Българското възраждане
Katya Staneva, On marginalized voices and languages of The Bulgarian national Revival


The article comments on the denial of the Ottoman heritage in the Bulgarian culture and the marginalization of the love poetry during the Bulgarian National Revival. Subject to the observations are song books from the past three decades before 1878, containing Turkish songs printed in Cyrillic alphabet. On The grounds of factology we can summarize, that under the pressure of national ideology the reception of love songs is depreciated and the role of the Turkish literature and vocabulary is denied radically in the cultural transfer in the Balkans in the 19th century. The reprinted "most used" Turkish folk songs are a testament to the multi-faced and multi-voiced Bulgarian Revival period; they emphasize the conceptual significance of the regional and marginal in the genre preferences during the specific political and socio-cultural context.

Katya Staneva (University of Sofia)

Евгения Иванова, Литературата като история. Историческо, фолклорно и литературно битие на Индже войвода
Eugeniya Ivanova, Literature as History


The Historical, Folkloric and Literary Life of Indzhe Voivoda According to documents Indzhe voivoda (died 1821) was the leader of a band of kurdjali (robbers) and a freelance in the Greek uprising. Cultural memory, however, makes him a hero and "people's protector", praised in many songs, stories and works of art. The text analyzes two story lines of Indzhe"s folk biography: the "transformation" of the robber into a protector and his death, localized in various places, but always - in Bulgarian lands, not where it actually happened. Along with the folk and artistic interpretations of the hero, family memory is also traced: the author has interviewed (with a gap of 32 years) two generations of the descendants of the "killer" of Indzhe - Yanko from the village of Urum kyoy (now, of course - Indzhe voivoda in South-eastern Bulgaria). Completely different stories and different positioning of the hero along the scale good/evil gives reasons to outline the great influence of cultural memory thought of - however - as family one. If in the 1980s of the 20th century the cultural and family memory existed in parallel, now the cultural memory is been increasingly forming, manipulating, and substituting the family one. It seems possible to reinvent not only the collective memory - a procedure that is hardly been questioned now, but also the family memory which does not seem so significant for the formation of mentality, and therefore - conceived as constant.

Eugeniya Ivanova (New Bulgarian University)

Владимир Трендафилов, Английският Вазов: преводачът на "Под игото"
Vladimir Trendafilov, Vazov Anglicized: Who Translated Under the Yoke?


The essay investigates an unresolved issue in the early history of modern Bulgarian literature concerning the person or persons who translated the 1893 English edition of Ivan Vazov"s novel "Under the Yoke". The argument is based on some recently found material backed by literary-reception methodology.

Vladimir Trendafilov (University of Sofia)

Николай Чернокожев, Откъси от писмата на един български лекар през 1854 г.
Nikolay Chernokozhev, Auszüge aus den Briefen eines bulgarischen Arzt im Jahre 1854


Die Vorliegende Berichte werden zum ersten Mal in bulgarischer Sprache übersetzt. Sie wurden im "Deutschen Museum" (1854) veröffentlicht, sind aber nicht in dem Teil "Anonyme Werke" aus dem Buch: Dr. N. Mikhoff. Bulgarien und sterben Bulgaren im Urteil des Auslandes. II Werke in deutscher Sprache. Sofia: Staatsdruckerei. 1929, erwähnt. Die Texte sind Auszüge aus Briefen eines bulgarischen Arztes, der Medizin in Wien studierte hatte und die politische und intellektuelle Herausforderung übernommen hat und seine Pflicht erfüllt die Ereignisse auf dem Balkan sowie den Wurzeln, Gründe und Modellierung, als auch die Instrumentalisierung, von bestimmten Medienbildern der russischen Politik für die deutschsprachige Öffentlichkeit zu erleuchten.

Nikolay Chernokozhev (University of Sofia)

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Ангел Ангелов, Пред/Модерни форми на живот в "Италиански разбойници" на Уошингтън Ървинг
Angel V. Angelov, Pre/Modern Styles of Life in Washington Irving"s The Italian Banditti


The article is part of a research project in which I compare the view of Italy, presented by foreign painters, writers and travellers, with the view from within - by Italian painters, writers and thinkers. The period is 1815-1870. Do I task myself with answering the question: what kind of image of the Italian society, history and nature does Irving"s The Italian Banditti create? The stories are historically important due to the influence they exerted on their contemporaries both in the U.S. and Britain and in Europe. I compare the image of the Italian banditti with that of the Indians and I conclude that the Indians are not an image of the exotic in Irving"s work. I interpret The Italian Banditti as a testimony for the relevance of the theme of the bandits during the 1820s and as an element of the collective unconscious of foreign travellers that is "Italy". In my interpretation, the emphasis is on the premodern styles of life of the bandits and most of the locals, as well as on the manifestations of modernity in the behaviour of characters that are not part of the local populace. The approach applied to the stories is cultural-historical - I analyse the stories as social media that produce values, form attitudes and behaviours. Irving contributes to the stabilization of a notion of Italy that contains the past, present and nature. The grandeur of the past Irving attributes only to Antiquity. According to him, medieval despotism and gothic superstitions are the causes of the sad current state of Italy. Irving does not idealize the bandits; the attitude towards them is torn between horror and admiration, between understanding and condemnation. The category of the picturesque is most suited for the description of the unusual scenery that Italy possesses. I attempt to make a distinction between the picturesque and the exotic. I also draw upon the stories from Irving"s collections Bracebridge Hall and The Sketch Book, as well as upon his diaries and letters.

Angel V. Angelov (South-West University)

Пламен Антов, Исторически роман, национализъм и (пост)-постмодернизъм. По повод на "Бежанци" от Весела Ляхова
Historic Novel, Nationalism, and (Post)-Postmodernism, A propos of "Refugies" by Vesela Lyahova


The article considers a specific tendency in the newest Bulgarian literature, related to the historical novel, at that in its large-scale type, close to the traditions of the classical national epopee: "Refugees" by Vesela Lyahova (2013) as well as some novels by Vladimir Zarev on contemporary themes, but finalizing a multivolume epical narrative - "The Law" (2013) and "Destruction" [Downfall]. These are voluminous works, which by its own way refresh the experience of the historic novel-epopee in its classical type, seemingly tendentiously ignoring the topical postmodern context. - From the other hand, a central position in this tendency is occupied by Milen Ruskov's novel "Summit" (2011), which openly is in this postmodern context, culminates and closes the accumulations of the "high" Bulgarian postmodernism of the poetry of the 1990s: language plays, rewriting of the History, de-monumentalizing of the national-ideological metanarrative as well as of the literary canon which produced it. Despite its difference, these novels are seen as a collective attempt for the long awaited epical reflexion on the radical changes after 1989 year, as a literary philosophy of the history through the national idea's lens. The study undertakes a wide socio-historical and philosophical excursion in order to consider the crisis of the national state as a symptom of the crisis of all grand narratives, historical by character, which are a representation of a general crisis of the collective identity, designating the end of the Modernity. The neo-nationalistic wave after 1989 year is commented on and especially from the beginning of the 21st century - nationalism of new, after-post-modern type, severely fragmented and mixed with neighboring realms such as the religious one, which sweeps away all kinds of prophecies for some Hegelian end of History and designates a renaissance of the collective identification. Through a historical-nationalistic prism, the discussion about the "high" and "low" postmodernism, about their incompatibility end even antagonism, is deepened and adduced in a maximum wide field - simultaneously as substantial qualities in a common dialectical subject and in their historical-developmental sequence. As a shift from the language of the "high" postmodernism toward the next stage of "low", popular after-postmodernism. A stage, which is simultaneously post-, but also (contra-)regressing back toward one pre-modern authenticity. In this way the novels of Zarev and Lyahova are seen simultaneously as non-postmodern and post-postmodern in their dialectical, uroboric coincidence: whether and to what extent their traditional, "classical" language is a deficiency or a surplus, overreaching, stepping across? - Do we have to deal with an authentic naivety, or with irony raised to the second power, i.e. masked as a naivety? Are there quotation marks? (The quotation marks in the "Summit" are more than obvious.) - The answer is in the lack of answer. In the slipping out oscillation between two positions, between original and copy. The identity itself is this, which creates the difference. The same paradox is projected in a wider scheme over the nature of the "low", late post-postmodernism of the mass culture. A (possible) paradox of the language dialectic is enacted - about the relative boundary between post- and pre-, which exactly one second post- may possibly realize.

Plamen Antov (Institute for literature, BAS)

Весела Кацарова, Ханиф Kурейши - раси, класи, секс и фарс
Vesels Katcharova, Hanif Kureishi - Race, Class, Sex and Farce


The contemporary British novelist of Pakistani descent Hanif Kureishi (1954), a highly prolific writer, expresses his artistic credo through a character, a theatre producer, who claims that an artistic work can be successful if it discusses the topical issues of race, class and sex through farce. Kureishi"s seven novels deal with these problems in varying degrees. His best novel so far, The Buddha of Suburbia (1990), encompasses them all in a very impressive way. By focusing on the topical issue of race in present-day Britain Kureishi enriches contemporary British fiction.

Vesela Katsarova (University of Sofia)


Николай Аретов, Stephen Greenblatt. The Swerve: How the World Became Modern. New York: W. W. Norton. 2011.
Nikolay Aretov, How Europeans think the nations? Some answers from the perspective of Cultural history and Imagology


Stephen Greenblatt tells the story of how Poggio Bracciolini, a 15th-century papal emissary, and obsessive book hunter, saved the last copy of the Roman poet Lucretius's On the Nature of Things from near-terminal neglect in a German monastery, thus reintroducing important ideas that sparked the modern age. The author analyzes this development in a very broad cultural and philosophical scale. This review presents the monograph of the so-called New Historicism and its possible applications in Bulgarian scholarship.

Nikolay Aretov (Institute for literature, BAS),