Диалог: Pro(за) Ф. М. Достоевского
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This monograph is the result of many years of studying the phenomenon of Dostoevsky as a scholarly dialogue, as is reflected in the title. Faced with choosing their scholarly framework, the authors decided upon an approach that in addition to the traditional view based on poetics, would also focus on aspects of ontology, anthropology, and intertextuality. A comprehensive body of Dostoevsky’s works has been examined together with his “nonfiction” writing (letters, diaries, notes, etc.). Dostoevsky’s work as a translator is studied as a source of his authorial method (the initial step in identifying his own stylistic preferences) and the associated formation of his receptive taste. Dostoevsky’s translation of Balzac’s Eugénie Grandet (1843) illustrates that his style would decidedly shift in the opposite direction. An examination of images through an anthropological lens begins with the study of the phenomenon of the child, which would become so important for Dostoevsky. The writer rejects the deceptive simplicity of the “child” as generally read through the Biblical paradigm of “seed.” In general, the interpretation of a number of texts makes use of new genre, paradigmatic and intertextual accents. Thus, the interpretation of The Adolescent (1875) as a novel-confession reveals the following characteristics of this genre: a nuanced narrative, confessional pathos, which results in the character’s spiritual enlightenment. The image of the protagonist’s mother, Sofya Andreyevna, which previously had not received sufficient attention from scholars of the novel, is examined from a different viewpoint, thus shedding light on images of Andrei Versilov and the Adolescent himself. At its core, Dostoevsky’s plot recalls the Biblical story of King David’s sin (Psalm 50), which can be read as a palimpsest of The Adolescent. The allusion to the Old Testament source (II Kings 11:15) rightly puts Arkady’s mother at the center the conflict, rather than the traditional conflict of father and son. The genre of the parable-parabola is used to examine “Dream of a Ridiculous Man” (1877), which makes it possible to vary the genre optics. The semantic potential of “Dream” is revealed in the triple ontological vector: dream–death–rebirth. The intertextual vector of the parable determines the more significant aspects of the of the plot, chronotope, and style; the image of the main character is read as a polemical version of Doctor Faust. The most important anthropological category of “man” leads to the concept of a “normal man,” which attracted Dostoevsky’s attention throughout the course of his career, and set the theme for a significant fragment of the novel The Adolescent. The primary measure of “normalcy” becomes the Christian idea of sin and its overcoming, as evidenced by the analysis of the general body of Dostoevsky’s work and the characters in his final novel, The Brothers Karamazov (1880). Beginning with Raskolnikov and the usual series of unusual characters in Dostoevsky, each of which in the intertextual space of world culture repeatedly manifests itself as a kind of matrix. But the figure of the writer himself also achieved this status. The numerous interpretations of the literary category “author” are examined here in connection with the poststructural concept of the “death of the author.” The paradigm “author” (a terminological syntagma) signifies the presence of the author’s name in the text in various formal and content levels. A component of this paradigm is the extra-textual figure of the author (the “real” “biographical author”). Dostoevsky is considered in the cultural space of late nineteenth-century France. Reviews by French critics of the time (in particular, E. M. de Vogue’s Russian Novel) outlined the tradition of perception that went through a number of stages. The modernist version of the Dostoevsky paradigm is represented by the literary and critical works of André Gide. There is a shift in accents in the reception of the Dostoevsky phenomenon, which is manifested in the varied attention to the figure of the writer himself, his ideas, the specific constructs of the personosphere, and so forth. The meaning of the term “realism” is analyzed through textual and world view parallels between Georges Bernanos and Dostoevsky, and examined in the French author’s debut novel Under the Sun of Satan (1926). Dostoevsky’s poetics (novelistic technique and stylistic innovation) had an enormous influence on the formation of the modernist movement of the Nouveau Roman. The figure of the Russian classic, which was perceived by those associated with the Nouveau Roman as an integral paradigm, retained its semantics within the framework of the Nouveau Roman. In André Glucksmann’s novel Dostoevsky in Manhattan (2002), the author interprets the phenomenon of Russian nihilism in accordance with Sartre’s concept of “engaged literature,” so that Dostoevsky is seen as a paradigm of Russian literature’s denunciatory and prophetic tendencies. A connection with Dostoevsky is also seen in Michel Houellebecq’s The Possibility of an Island (2005), which inverts the traditional genre of the utopia. He presents Dostoevsky as an intertextual sign. The novel highlights the vector of man vs. animal. In Dostoevsky we have: thing–animal–man–superman (man-God)–God-man. In Houellebecq’s text varies this chain so that “superman” is replaced by “neo-man”; while God-man becomes “Coming” or “Future.” What he shares with Dostoevsky is the conclusion that the step after “man” is interpreted as a reversion to the original “animal.” The Dostoevskian intertext plays a direct role in Frederic Beigbeder’s Ideal (2007), presenting a generalized paradigm of Russian culture. Dostoevsky’s intertexts and their meanings have a special place in world literature. This proposition is investigated in the context of Polish writer Bruno Schulz. A methodological approach to the reconstruction of possible reception is proposed, since in the receptive field of Schulz we find only single mention of the Russian classic in connection with Dostoevsky’s Double and The Brothers Karamazov. Schulz in particular shows an interest in the mystical, similar to Dostoevsky’s method, which has been interpreted as mystical realism. The monograph concludes with the question of the historiographic value of the writer’s experience, primarily focused on A Writer’s Diary, in particular, the Balkan situation in 1876-77. We analyze Dostoevsky’s reading of the Balkan situation and the modern interpretation of these events today. For the first time in the humanities, the mysterious figure of Russian General M. G. Chernyaev, whom Dostoevsky mentions several times, is analyzed in the context of material found in new archival sources. Finally, we consider contemporary Ukrainian Dostoevsky studies as a whole. The major achievements in the study of Dostoevsky’s life and work are highlighted together with contemporary works, with primary attention given to monographs and dissertations of Ukrainian scholars. Not bound only by literary studies, we also included works that focus on linguistic, philosophical and other aspects of the writer’s oeuvre.