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Journal: Problemy Istoriceskoj Poetiki (Vol.12, No. 9)

Publication Date:

Authors : ;

Page : 199-219

Keywords : Gogol; Christianity; history; slavophilism; slavdom; literature; society; biography; sacred prose; interpretation;

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It is well known that P. J. Chaadaev’s, a famous Russian thinker of the 19th century, assessment of the present-day reality was determined by the study of the world and Russian history. But it is less known that Gogol was keen on studying of history since his childhood and that his enthusiasm for history seriously affected his literary and publicistic works. Unfortunately, for a long time scholars have not devoted enough attention to the impact of Gogol’s interest on his artistic images. The article is one of the first attempts to fill this vacuum and show how the study of the Slavic and Russian past (the source of information for the writer mainly was The History of Russian State by Karamzin) affected the writer's vision of the present and the future of Russia as well as the reflection of it in his writings: in stories A Terrible Vengeance, Taras Bulba, The Tale of How Ivan Ivanovich Quarreled with Ivan Nikiforovich and in his main novel ? Dead Souls. The content of historical works of Gogol, his lectures and individual sketches allow us to say that the most sensitive "pain spots" in the writer's perception of national history was experience of a well-known phenomenon ? the mutual princely feuds, often destroying the Russian and Slavic unity. Peculiarity of Gogol as a writer, as a Christian author, was in the fact that, perhaps, no one experienced this sad locus communis of the Old Russian past so deeply and keenly as he did. The article based on the extensive material that the problem of overcoming the internecine conflicts, being important for the building of the Russian and Slavic world, disturbed Gogol throughout his life and became one of the main and key themes in his writing.

Last modified: 2016-03-28 22:24:30