Issue 2, 2005

Образи на другото в литературната комуникация

Радосвет Коларов, Колебание, неопределеност и желание за другото
Radosvet Kolarov, Hesitstion, Uncertainty and Desire for the Other


The article focuses on hesitation as an anthropological mode, as a psychological state taken in its everyday pragmatic understanding. Usually hesitation is seen as a 'battle of motives' on the stage of consciousness with a hindrance in decision making in gen eral or in case of complicated problematic situation According to the main thesis of the text hesitation is paradoxically engendered not only by 'selective deficiency', not only by the difficulty of choice but also by reluctance to make it. Namely, hesitation displays not only its deterministic but also, so to speak, its 'wave' logic according to ehich it is marked by the intention of the self not to loose the alternatives, to keep the 'packet' of coexisting possibilities open.

Александър Кьосев, Пристояване на "своето": Категориите "наше", "българско", "у нас" в първата българска литературна история
Alexander Kyosev, Appropriation of the "own". The Categories „Ours“, „Bulgarian“, „In Our Country“ in the First Bulgarian Literary History


The paper examines the way Alexander Teodorov Balan’s textbook Bulgarian Literature (1896) — the first academical history of Bulgarian literature — includes in the content of the latter folklore, medieval and modern literature; the manner in which it draws the line at the „ours“ and „appropriates“ unexpected ranges and parts of oral culture and literature. Described here are the rhetorical strategies of appropriation of migrating plots in folklore; of creating of the Bulgarian „Marko-iad“; of transformation of Byzantine manuscripts into Bulgarian ones, etc. The strategies in question are examined as a part of an all-round institutional rhetoric, logically conflicting, but stimulating, a rhetoric inherited by Balan’s textbook from its models — the histories of slavonic literatures.

The paper attempts to elucidate a paradox: how is it possible the „Bulgarian“ which is composed of so many problematic pieces to be presented as non-problematic and apparent.

Димитър Камбуров, Уседналата долница на Европа: Регионалната междуположеност на Балканите като по(л)родена
Dimitar Kambourov, The Settled Down Lowness of Europe: The Regional Inbetweenness of the Balkans as Engendered


Among the traditional definitions of backwardness and indiscernible inbetweenness the Balkans have been traditionally perceived, both from within and without, as a masculine space, i.e. as a place of non-modernized patriarchal domination. In effect a compound image of the Balkans as an unreasonable, underdeveloped, inconspicuous, brutish, swarthy macho has been constructed. Since measures are due, both modernisation and affiliation to the West are put at work. Yet the masculine image of the region is not yet challenged, neither outside nor inside. Modern gender imagology allows man to be weak yet not irrational; deprived of rationality man is but insane. The insanity of the masculine Balkans is promoted as hampering both modernisation and integration of the region. So do suggest the local and foreign media, former and contemporary travel writings, also the regional mass culture and popular art (yet the latter being less unequivocally negative). Such is the message shared by the regional cinematography bum from Kusturica to Tanovic: heroic masculinity of honour, revenge, imaginary rights and claims, of festive suicidality is to be overcome had the Balkans cherished hopes for brighter future. Yet the Balkan literature of today, the postmodern one in particular, shares a different vision. Instead of complying with the feminised modernisation, it assumes that the feminine element of Balkan identity has ever been there, yet the whole gender picture of the regional culture is more complex. It recalls the modern gender rereading of sexes with men weak in their strength or rather fragile in their rigidity, and women sick or rather indisposed with regard to the imposed order. Contrary to Freud's legacy, postmodern literature displays women as not deranged but rather indisposed: indisposed to possession and thus possessed in their posing disposal. Yet such a gender role distribution is shifted into premodern past and is thus provided with a mythopoetic a-historical endurance; therefore male weakness is promoted as somewhat feminine openness to mystical or rather astonished spirituality, whereas female sickness is sold as a kind of subversive susceptibility of a wise or rather insightful fatalism. What gathers men and women in Balkan postmodern is their vocation or inability to forget, to put aside the memory, to throw away the traces of the past that embrace the ability to think and solve problems. The Balkan postomodern is thus rather premodern in its hyper-textual after-literature of dictionaries, taro cards, crosswords, daily columns, critical reviews, etc., all of them challenging linearity and homogeneity of writing. What are the cultural and political implications of such a literary ideology of Balkan postmodern is to be discussed. As it is well known gender is not only an instrument for change and improvement of women's position, but also a tool for all-encompassing social and political change. Literature through its Balkan postmodern version is reconsidered as an instance of innately non-modern other within the Western cultural framework. Literature is the fading instance of otherness, lowness, nothingness, death and mortality within the operative aggregate of late modernity. Literature, postmodern suggests, goes at odds with certain fundamental principles of modern world: market, instrumentality, utilitarianism, uniformity under an apparent variety, universal law, formal logic, individualism, identity, success, velocity. At the same time it is in concert with other principles as selfless heterogeneous subjectivity, freedom of choice, of successive renovation, of a negotiation based on contractive constructivism which we call 'constractivism'.

Морис Фадел, Понятието за другия у Пол де Ман
Maurice N. Fadel, Paul de Man's Concept of „the other"


The text examines the radical change, which Paul de Man offers in the understranding of rhetoric. However, this change could be detected only in the process of a careful reading, because De Man doesn't develop it info a theoretical construction, doesn,t argue a new project of rhetotic. In De Man,s texts, rhetoric is not some specific language usage, as it has been regarded ever since Antiquity. It turns out that what De Man calls „rhetoric" is the place where language makes us absorbed in the infinite in our eyes regeneration and segmentation of its constituents, which we can affect in no way. At the end of the article we draw some conclusions from this concept of rhetoric, presenting non-traditional De Man's interpretations of the autonomy of the subject, literature, and literary criticism.

Модерният наратив. Интертекстуални пресичания

Светлана Стойчева, Юлияна Стоянова, Навътре към чуждото - стратегията на едно творчество
Svetlana Stoycheva, Juliana Stoyanova Inwards to the Foreign: The Strategy of Dimitar Dimov's Works


The foreign in Dimitar Dimov's works is basic for his narrative strategy. It is structure-forming for his works, and not external and formal, as it has been perceived in most cases. Sustained by it are the story and the characters, as well as the narrator's point of view. Without including an opposition to the own/Bulgarian, it is a direct approach to the most crucial philosophical and psychological searches of the author. The foreign is set also as a reading strategy of Dimov's works. If the reader misses the „foreign" - if s/he depreciates or misinterprets it - that means s/he misses Dimov. Furthermore, „inwards to the foreign" suggests a reception strategy by which the receiver could „read" his/her own intrapsychic.

Любка Липчева-Пранджева, Въобразености - със и без Вайнингер
Liubka Lipcheva-Prandzheva, Imaginaries - With and Without Weininger


A study, Sex and Character by Otto Weininger, falls into the epicentre of the curiosities of the day in the Bulgarian cultural milieu. Who and how is reading Weininger and are indeed exactly women who turn out to be so loyal to his „female sex" postulates? The current paper examines the reception of the Weininger text, highlighting the dialogic fields provoked by it - the vague menace of the feminist movement, the suicide as a free will choice, the rejection of the rather screaming speech about/of sexuality. And while the Bulgarian creator feels obliged to find and offer an exemplary model for the modern (and yet „unaffected" by modernity, „healthy") Bulgarian woman, his imagination tenaciously refuses to unfold the suicide woman plot.

Татяна Ичевска, Чифликът без граници (Библейското и светското в романа „Чифликът край границата")
Tatiana Ichevska, The Farm with No Frontiers: The Biblical and the Secular in the Novel The Farm by the Frontier


The present text on the one hand traces the strategies by which in Yovkov's novel The Farm by the Frontier the „subjection" and the „conciliation" of different thematic and generic frontiers are accomplished. On the other hand, considered here are the ways by which the two codes function in the novel - that of the biblical and that of the secular (seen as a specific synthesis of melodramatic-sentimental, social and philosophical-psychological principles). Last but not least, the paper is in search of the reasons why The Farm by the Frontier „blows up" the „typical Yovkov" notion existing in the field of literary criticism.

Цветанка Атанасова, „Невероятните" разкази на Светослав Минков в контекста на модерната литература
Tzvetanka Atanassova, Svetoslav Minkov's „Improbable" Short Stories in the Context of Modern Literature


Svetoslav Minkov's fiction sublimates world-view, aesthetic and generic tendencies characteristic of the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries European art. The current paper is an attempt at examining the „im-probable" in Minkov as an aesthetic category connected with the aspiration advertised by the Bulgarian postwar Modernism for maximum independence of the art from visibility. In practice, Minkov not only categorically denies mimesis and confirms fictionality, but in the text itself he parodically decomposes the approved practices of creating fictional illusion. In the 1920s, in synchronization with the grotesque-diabolical tendency in the German-language literature, Svetoslav Minkov and Chavdar Mutafov establish the modernistic grotesque in Bulgaria. Situating Minkov's short stories in the context of modern Bulgarian and European literature the current paper outlines some basic philosophical, aesthetical and poetological parallels, mainly with representatives of the grotesque science fiction - Meyrink, Evers, Čapek, etc.

Борис Минков, Градът като място на модерното в творчеството на Георги Райчев
Boris Minkov, Town As Locus of Modern in Georgi Raichev's works


Градът като място на модерното в творчеството на Георги Райчев

Гражина Шват-Гълъбова (Варшава), Въпросът за conditio bulgarica в контекста на богомилския мит
Grażyna Szwat-Gyłybowa (Warsaw), Question concerning conditio bulgarica in the context of the Bogomil myth


V. Zarev's Priest Bogomil and the Perfection of Fear (1998) is one of the attempts - representative for the contemporary Bulgarian culture - at a revaluation of the heretic tradition of Bogomilism. It is at the same time a noteworthy opinion in the discussion which concerns the Mediaeval neo Manichean tradition in Europe. Zarev's protagonist is the orthodox priest Bogomil, founder of a gnosis; the author attempts a deconstruction of a heresiarch's myth, functioning in Bulgarian culture. While subordinating the world presented to the rules of a post Modernist discourse, Zarev is not content with a diagnosis of an inner rift in Bulgarian culture, its being torn between the two incoherent Weltanschauung paradigms (Christianity and Bogomilism) which had supposedly led to the destabilization of the Bulgarians' moral horizon. For in Zarev's world of axiological void, the „last word" belongs to the myth of Bogomilism as the forerunner of heretic movements, the hermetic and enlightenment tradition in Europe.

Олга Гроновска (Варшава), Криза, Изток и Запад като понятия, имплициращи българските културни дилеми в светлината на литературно-критичните текстове от 30-те години на XX век
Olga Gronowska (Warsaw), The crisis and East vs West as the concepts implying Bulgarian culture dilemmas in the light of the literary critics of the 1930's


Bulgarian literary critics of the 1930's century became the material basis of the article, where the analysis of the problems concentrating around certain concepts has been done. The texts in question are treated as the evidence of the new cultural identification formation in the time when Bulgaria regained its independence. The crisis and East vs West are the key concepts here, being stable and recursive, implying, as it seems, the dilemmas of the Bulgarian elite of that period. The quandaries concerning cultural choices of the first half of the 20th century are the common denominator for those concepts, although their genesis is of a more complicated character. The proposed use of sociological definitions as tools of analysis is caused by the character of the material in question. The key words from genre-homogeneous texts appear in similar contexts. They become inscribed into the wide background of Bulgarian choices and searches for national values, for which European culture conditions are the natural context.

Йоланта Суйецка (Варшава), Балкански места на паметта. Терминът Македония и образът на Никола Вапцаров в българския и македонския времепространствен континуум
Jolanta Sudecka (Warsaw), The Balkan Sites of Memory: The concept of Macedonia in the Bulgarian and Macedonian Space-Time Continuum


This paper aims to illustrate the functionality of the term „sites of memory" with reference to the study of two national canons with overlapping time-space continuum. I use the term as defined by A. Szpociсski (1986) but I give it a „territorial" dimension. By „sites of memory" I understand a past space-time continuum that embraces past events and their participants. Even in biblical times, places were named after events so to record for posterity their spiritual character (E. Dressler, 2003). The Akeda, or the offering of Isaac, took place on the Mount of „har-ha-Morija", which means „the Eternal One watches". Mount Morija, i.e. the site itself, is in this case treated as the witness of the event.

The „sites of memory" analysed in this paper verbalise values that are treated by Bulgarian and Macedonian elites as an integral part of their identity. Owing to its connotations in both cultures, the concept of Macedonia determines the semantics of the image of Nikola Vapcarov, a poet belonging to both national canons. Vacparov as an image and symbol of the territory functions in both national circulations by token of his territorial association. Thus, the image of Vapcarov is a mythologem of Macedonia in two separate national canons, Macedonian and Bulgarian. An analysis of Vapcarov's poetry and his biography as part of the symbolic concept of Macedonia in both national cultures confirms at the same time the functionality of the term „sites of (collective) memory" with reference to phenomena, which emerge in the environment of cultural and ethnic contacts.

Ирина Добрева, Възрожденски интерпретации на житийното
Irina Dobreva, Sacred Biography in Early Modern Bulgaria


Traditionally, creating sacred biographies (narrative texts of the saint's life) was a way of giving some structure and coherence to traumatising experiences in order to strengthen integrity of Christian community. But even more, sacred biographies are providing both linguistic and philosophical frame for the community understanding of such experiences and these experiences' theological, moral and political implications in a situation of new ideological needs. Imitatio Christi receives additional significance, being charged with special value as an argument believers to take part in liberation movements when national ideology was considered to share common features with magistral ideas of Christianity. More traditional authors emphasize the situation of renunciation to present models of behaviour worthy of emulation-texts provide a documentary witness of sanctification for community and in thus become themselves a part of the sacred tradition they serve to document. But there also appear interpretations of recent saints as ancestors of national heroes because the sameness of their sacrifice for a glorious idea. Genre's rhetorical practices and purposes undergo change and contribute to the construction of a national pantheon and acceptance of new personae and deeds. In the new biographical practices authors also often seek to model hero's suffering on that of Christ or to adopt certain topoi from hagiography and Scripture in an attempt to locate personal events in some larger absolute frame. As most preferable are distinguished the debate or bringing to court situations. Biographical and paradigmatic are brought together to assure legitimacy for biographical texts and auto/biographical intention.

Discussing different aspects of sacred biography in 19th century we tend to conclude that recent saint's legitimacy is based chiefly on the existence of properly composed vita of a saint. At the same time conventions well known from hagiography affect different life-writing practices and continue to play a significant role in giving shape to personal experience.

Анна Алексиева, Симптоматика на меланхоличното в българската поезия от 40-50-те години на XIX век
Anna Alexieva, The Symptoms of Melancholic in Bulgarian Poetry from the 40s and 50s-of XIX century


The text deals with the depressive conditions of subjectivity, which, denominated with the concept of melancholy, is expressed in the Bulgarian Renaissance poetry from the 40s and 50s of XIX century. Provoked by the situation of love non-realization, these conditions elaborate their own language, assigned the task to describe the symptoms of melancholic. Thus, the articulation of a number of psychosomatic reactions such as cry, the feeling of „burning down to ashes" with love, the claustrophobic adjustment to placement in uncozy, decreased spaces, the insurmountable attachment of the subject to the past, his impossibility to maintain social relations, etc. becomes possible. Love poetry from the middle of XIX century, which exposes the symptoms of melancholic, evidences the occurrence of considerable transformations in Bulgarian socio-cultural space. It presents a new role type - the melancholic person in love, whose image becomes an example to be followed, a regulator of everyday practices and behaviouristic models. In a wider perspective, this type of poetry marks an important development line in Bulgarian lyrics, which fluctuations might be revealed in the post-liberation love poetry.