Issue 2, 2007


Григор Хар. Григоров, Писателят като герой
Grigor Har. Grigorov, The Writer as Hero


The figure of the writer-hero is established only in the conditions of some premodern notion of literature, while the modern idea of literature produces the image of the professional writer, master of playing with words and creating plots. The premodern and the modern states of literature are two successive phases of the "literary field" (Bourdieu) and the transition between them can be observed in the end of the 19th and the beginning of the 20th century. The difference between the two stages is considerable: in the first phase the emphasis is put on the themes, i.e. on what is written, while in the modern stage it is put on the style, i.e. on how is written; in the first stage the writers compete for the right of executing a certain social role (e.g. the role of chroncler), while in the second period the rivalry is between entire aesthetic movements (e.g. impressionism vs. expressionism).

The writer-heroes execute the cultural function of "memory guards and glory sovereigns" (Veselovsky) and substitute the traditional ethical regulations with the decrees of a heroic code - they dethrone the everyday virtues and legalize the heroic virtues. According to multiple criteria (the heroic deed type, the existential position toward life and death, the specific authority of the speech, the type of heroic declarations, etc.) three social roles could be distinguished: the poet-revolutionary, the chronicler and the national poet.

The most evident heroic declaration is the choice of a pseudonym. In addition, to win a certain role the writers must also follow specific responsible conduct in relation to the causes of the nation, which is manifested as a certain unity of action and words, of life and literature. The most important characteristics of these three roles are the following:

The role of the poet-revolutionary is constituted through the public poetic vow of heroism, declared in first person singular, such as: "Let's go to death, brother!" (Botev) or "Now or never, / let's go to fight!" (Stambolov). In order to receive such a role from the public the writer-hero must accomplish the poetic vow during his life. In such cases, the execution of the heroic deed is realized as a unity of words and action - it is symptomatic that the most popular songs during the rebel in 1876 ("Play on pipe, grandfather", "Do not cry, mother, do not grieve", "We do not want treasure", etc.) contain heroic declarations in first person. There is no other more adequate way to proclaim the heroic deed than the expression of the program followed by the heroic deed.

If the figure of the poet-revolutionary is founded as "sovereign of glory", the images of the chronicler and the national poet could be defined as "guards of memory". The main feature that differentiates them is partiality-impartiality of shared knowledge. Representatives of the chronicler role are Zahary Stoyanov and Stoyan Zaimov, and their specific point of view consists of the unique knowledge of the witness and the impossibility to be an objective narrator. The speech of the chronicler gains its specific authority from the fact that the narrated events are not only knowledge, but also personal acquired experience. The position of risking their lives gives them the right to judge social vices - a right entirely used by Zahary Stoyanov.

The role of the national poet, embodied by Ivan Vazov, is supplied with the authority of the commentator, nonparticipant in the narrated events, that is to say not trying to draw personal dividends from the constructed image of the past. The lack of social prestige of the participant is a weakness, compensated by the non-contradictory position of the distant commentator. The heroic sacrifice of the national poet is composed of full devotion to the creative power in the name of the national cause. The national poet builds the ideal image of the collective existence and his heroic sacrifice is expressed as a long-term civil duty.

These three heroic writer roles are constituted in accordance with their different positions in relation to the border between life and death. The poet-revolutionary declares in his works that he is ready to risk his life, the chronicler - that he had already risked his life, and the national poet - that he devotes his life in the name of a common cause. The authority of the writer's speech is therefore consequence of the specific instances, from which it is communicated, namely: the speech of the man on the threshold of death, the man living second life or the responsibly living man.

Анна Алексиева, Поемата "Стоян и Рада" от Найден Геров - разделението на културните езици
Anna Alexieva, The Lyrical Poem "Stoyan and Rada" by Nayden Gerov: The Division of Cultural Languages


The analysis of the first Bulgarian narrative poem "Stoyan and Rada" (1845) proceeds from the assumption that the poem represents two types of subjectivity, two types of love behaviour: courteously ritual and traditionally patriarchal. The former model followed by the subject speaking in the first part (the so-called "dedication") includes an active I-position, flexibility of communication, and eroticized gestures. The poem's second part which contains a text within the text (a gift from the character to his beloved) represents another type of behaviour through the characters of Stoyan and Rada. That type is sensitive to the social sanctions and the transcendental authority, and is orientated towards the past and the folklore patriarchal culture.

Examining the complicated dialogue between those two antithetical models, the paper is trying to find out why the seducer lover from the first part of the poem is telling his beloved exactly the story of Stoyan and Rada and what relation does it bear to the courtship situation. The speaking subject is seemingly clear about the uniting closeness provoking power of a sad sentimental story that activates identificational and compassionate impulses. His gallant talking embodies the utopian notion of word's inviolability and omnipotence, and its ability to shape all kinds of views, situations, and feelings, including love.

Пламен Антов, Към генеалогия на сецесиона: диалогът "Угасна слънце" - "Хаджи Димитър": ерос и хтонос
Plamen Antov, Towards a Genealogy of Sezession: The Dialogue "The Sun Dies Out" - "Hadji Dimitar": Eros and Htonos


The cardinal ambition of the text is to investigate the genetic commitment of the Modernism, and in particular of the Sezession poetics, with deep archetypical structures. The key role of Romanticism in this genealogy has been elucidated in detail, i.e. the transformation of myth folklore codes into literary ones.

The problem is examined through a comparative reading of two poems, emblematic of Bulgarian poetry whose intertextual connection was established long ago - the romantic ballad "Hadji Dimitar" (1873) by the poet-revolutionary Hristo Botev and the poem "The Sun Dies Out" (1905), a sezession work by the most eminent representative of the early Modernism in Bulgaria Peyo Yavorov. The text studies the way in which Yavorov inherited and transformed not only the model of Botev, but - through it - the universal archaic archetype of the sacrificial heroic death in the middle of a monumental natural-cosmic chronotop. Beyond this archetype, the research restores the hidden presence of a second, more primitive one - about the battle of the hero against the chthonic female monster. In this way the "female" sex of the sezession Мonster in poem "The Sun Dies Out" has been determined, and its origin postulated through the folklore figure of the "samodiva" (wood nymph) in "Hadji Dimitar".

Some other problems are examined in parallel. The manifested "political modernity" of the national Romanticism in Botev is pointed out, his engagement with the actuality, with the topical and concrete conditions of the national Renaissance, as well as the "mental modernity" of Yavorov's secession, which manifests itself, on the contrary, through a refusal of an external engagement with the political. This "mental modernity" has inherited,on another level, the absolute universalism of the archaic archetype. In such a way is substantiated the thesis of the regressive nature of the Modernism and the deeper "primitivism" of the modernist Yavorov in comparison with the romanticist Botev.

This subject is situated in another, more particular, interpretative prospect. Through it has been traced - in a poetic-biographical aspect - the self-mythological potency of both poetic models - Botev's and Yavorov's.

Миряна Янакиева, "Сън за щастие" и двете антологии на Славейков
Miriana Yanakieva, "Dream of happiness" and the Two Anthologies of Pencho Slaveykov


The article deals with the intertextual relations between Pencho Slaveykov's lyrical book entitled "Dream of happiness" (1907) and two anthologies of his: "On the Isle of the Blessed" (1910) and "German Poets" (1911). The former presents imaginary poets whose poems were written by Slaveykov himself. The latter is a real anthology of German poetry from Goethe to Slaveykov's time, translated by Slaveykov himself.

Some of the poets presented in the two anthologies were real lyricists. We can find significant resemblances between their poems and Slaveykov's lyrical book "Dream of happiness". The paper makes an attempt at tracing those resemblances in order to realize Slaveykov's concept of lyrics.

Петър Трендафилов, Поети и прототипи в "На Острова на блажените"
Petar Trendafilov, Poets and Prototypes in "On The Isle of The Blessed"


The paper analyzes the principles and the techniques used by Pencho Slaveykov in the nomination of the poets in his anthology-mystification "On the Isle of the Blessed". The names of the poets are contrasted not only with the names in the Miladinovi brothers' collection, but also with the folklore collections of St. Verkovich and that of P. Slaveykov himself. Names of other works of the poet are used for comparison. Also examined in the text are two published lists of poets names which show the hesitation in P. Slaveykov's choice. A possible conclusion is that the author of "On the Isle of the Blessed" might have been looking for an increasingly more complicated combination of the names that were initially given. With the growing of the mystificational connotativeness, grows the conventionality as well.

Надежда Александрова, Лилиев и любовта
Nadezhda Alexandrova, Liliev and Love


Love in Nikolay Liliev's poetry is tradicionally perceived and defined as incorporeal, seraphic, narcissistic, etc. The text aims at explaining the nature and realization of love in both Liliev's life and works. For that purpose the paper takes as a point of departure a few key phrases in Liliev's lyric poetry that were also turned into an emblem of his life as well, and connects them to unknown and unpublished letters from the poet's archives.

Ethics, aesthetics and biographical data complicatedly interweave in the mind and sensitivity of the poet who created unique lyrical masterpieces uniting Bulgarian poetry with the spirit of European Modernism.

Александра Антонова, Пластическите изображения в романа "Дилетант" на Чавдар Мутафов
Alexandra Antonova, Plastic Images in Chavdar Mutafov's Novel "Dilletante"


In his works Chavdar Mutafov poses the problem how to read his texts. He creates his words on the basis of a specific concept of art, which I define as art of the searching form. Developed as a possibility of self-identification, art seeks its forms in a diversity of artistic techniques and the plastic stylization of the word is one of them. Plastic stylization is created in the art concepts of the modern artists. Observations of the features of Chavdar Mutafov's "word painting" have been previously made by Edvin Sugarev, Katya Zografova, Lyubomir Milchev, Dimitar Avramov. Mutafov creates his painting into two parallel plans - objective and abstract. The sequence of object and abstraction takes part in the phenomenon of the plastic transformation of the image. Plastic line of the image is noticeable for one more feature: frequently it is especially, deliberately aesthetic. The principle of animation is another typical technique of plastic stylization in Mutafov's works. The principle of animation brings us to one of the great phenomena in the "Dilettante" novel: plastic images of emotionally experienced philosophical reflection. Plastic stylization of emotional experience which creates philosophical reflections is among the most expressive techniques in the human space rendering in the novel. Mutafov also utilizes the typical techniques of the fragment and ornament. Geometry figures play special role in the development of his plastic images play. Mutafov creates artistic messages throughout the figures of line, circle, spiral and sinusoid. All these techniques reveal the rich artistic potential of plastic stylization through words.

Албена Вачева, Жените и литературните институции
Albena Vacheva, Women and Literary Institutions


The text aims at showing the results of a study on women's role in the Bulgarian literary field. The paper puts an emphasis on the Women Writers Club, a female organization that existed between 1930 and 1944 and was mainly active in the field of modern literature and culture. The conclusions were drawn on the basis of a number of public records, such as The Club's minute book and The Women Club rules, as well as many publications in the periodical press concerning the Club's activities. Discussed in the paper are those mechanisms through which female writers were included in those events that were important in terms of cultural field's transformation into autonomous and professional field. Also, examined in the paper are the issues of power and literature, the relations between the state and the cultural institutions, and the way the cultural capital was divided and transformed in the modern Bulgarian state.

Едвин Сугарев, Георги Рупчев и Александър Вутимски
Edvin Sugarev, Georgi Rupchev and Alexander Vutimsky


The paper examines the aesthetic and philosophical parallel between the poetry of Alexander Vutimsky and that of Georgi Rupchev, whose powerful poetic presence illuminated the 1940s and 1980s generations. Their similarity is traced on the basis of the specific feeling of timelessness, dehumanization and futurelessness that marked the 1940s, as well as the 1960s. The paper also elucidates the tragic destiny of the two poets, and argues that the existential dramatic tension of their poetry was predetermined by the situation of writing face to face with the inevitable death. Detailed analyses of Rupchev's emblematical poems ("The death of Tibalt", "The road further", "The big land") show thematic accents and psychological characteristics similar to those of Vutimsky's poetry, like the premonition of doom, the apocalyptical life, the feeling of predetermination and solitude, the refusal of easily acceptation of the social conventions, the marginal existence as a conscious choice.