VARIATIONS’ OF THE PRODIGAL DAUGHTER MOTIF IN THE NARRATIVE OF THE NOVEL “THE INSULTED AND HUMILIATED” BY F. M. DOSTOEVSKYJournal: Problemy Istoriceskoj Poetiki (Vol.13, No. 1)
Publication Date: 2015-11-27
Authors : Valentina I. Gabdullina;
Page : 234-252
Keywords : motif; narrative strategy; genre model; parable; novel;
The article analyzes Dostoevsky’s novel “The Insulted and Humiliated” in terms of functioning of the prodigal daughter motif in its narrative structure, dating back to the Gospel text and Pushkin’s pretext. The author finds several interpretative variants of the prodigal daughter motif, each one represented by different narrators in various genre models: from a sentimental melodrama (Ivan Petrovich) and a romantic story with a tragic ending (Nelly) to “a charming anecdote” (duke Valkovsky) and an adventure story, stylized of “skomoroshina” (Masloboev). In addition, the text of the novel contains a lyrical story “Bell” by Ya. P. Polonsky, which presents a poetic (romance) version of the traditional motif. In the novel, opening a new period of his works, Dostoevsky appraises the possibilities of a polyphonic art system, using the “eternal story” of the prodigal daughter for that purpose. Analysis of the narrative structure of the novel makes it possible to observe how the author matches different narrative strategies, making the text of the work a kind of “a test area” for creating a new novelistic form.
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