«RECEPTION-RESPONSE» AS AN OBJECT OF THE IMAGO: H. SENKEVYCH «WITH FIRE AND SWORD» – M. STARYTSKYI «BOHDAN KHMELNYTSKYI»

Victoria Oleksandrivna MARTSENISHKO

Abstract


Introduction. Comparative studios occupy one of the leading positions in contemporary Ukrainian literary criticism; and their importance is only intensified over time. The theme of cultural interaction, borderland, and Kresy is widely represented in Polish and Ukrainian literary criticism. The formation of the literary «response» to a foreign reception in the frames of internal literature has wide ideological, psychological, ethno-cultural dimensions. At the turn of XIX – XX centuries, the problem of delineation of «your own» / «alien» is rather acute for the Ukrainian writers. To make emphasis on «your own» while separating from «someone else’s» (neighboring) is important. Consequently, we are focused on the representatives of the Ukrainian school in Polish literature, as well as on the novel by H. Senkevych «With Fire and Sword». In the work of H. Senkevych, the opposing visions of demonic Ukraine and sacred Poland were represented to become the basis for the long and stable structures of collective consciousness. The Ukrainian reaction to the novel «With Fire and Sword» resulted in the appearance of a whole series of works (including the trilogy by M. Starytskyi «Bohdan Khmelnytskyi») to have influence on the national self-assertion. Purpose. The purpose of the article is to find out the facts and the factors of the influence of Ukrainian historical literature (in particular, the trilogy by Mykhailo Starytskyi «Bohdan Khmelnytskyi») on the formation of a multilevel unity: imagological discourse in the Ukrainian-Polish literary dialogue. Results. In the novel «With Fire and Sword,» H. Senkevych affirmed the main postulates of the negative myth model showing Ukrainians as lower creatures, characterized by cruelty, hatred, vindictiveness, and betrayal predilection. The Polish writer does not take into account the components of Ukrainian identity such as language, religion, eagerness for independence and depicts Ukraine as a demonic place having nothing in common with Poland. Along with the stereotyped demonized image of the Ukrainians in the novel, we have a positive autoimage of the Polish people. The author points to the main mental archetypes, the fundamental components of the national system of values, such as: Christianity, sarmatism, liberation struggle and the decisive role of a public duty. M. Starytskyi was aware of the polemical nature of his historic «project» designed to establish the Ukrainian «reason» against the popular interpretations of Polish historiography, in particular the most representative novel «With Fire and Sword». It is necessary to emphasize that Ukrainian authors not only opposed H. Senkevych, but also developed their own historiosophical tradition, initiated by M. Hohol and P. Kulish. M. Starytskyi actively uses the Cossack myth, combining it with folk tradition. The idealization of the Cossacks is a kind of Ukrainian national spirit affirmation, revealing its essence in this form. Originality. Having a strong desire to correct the Polish image of Ukraine was one of the permanent tendencies for the Ukrainian literature of the centuries. It also served as a significant stimulus for the self-improvement of Ukrainian literature. And became an important urge for Ukrainian-Polish literary dialogue initiation, encouraging Ukrainian artists actively join to the literary discussion of the Ukrainian image. Conclusion. During the nineteenth century definite stereotypes (myths) of mutual perception were adopted and formed in the Ukrainian and Polish consciousness. The appearance of a number of works that require a separate analysis became the evidence of this process. In addition, it should be noted that Ukrainian-Polish relations need further thoughtful study from the nation-building point of view. And not only Ukrainian and Polish, but also Lithuanian, Russian, Jewish, and Belarusian (for example, a comparative study of Ukrainian-Polish and Russian-Polish stereotypes).

Keywords


imago; discourse; reception; response; stereotypes; myth; image; contacts; dialogue; polemics

References


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