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“Oh, Where are You, My Russia?”: The Image of Russia in the Camp Poems of A. Solzhenitsyn

T.Ye. Smykovskaya
80,00 ₽

UDC 81`42



Smykovskaya Tatyana Ye.,

Ph.D., in Philology, Associate Professor

Blagoveshchensk State Pedagogical University

Historical and Philological Department,

The Division of Russian Language and Literature



The article deals with A. Solzhenitsyn camp poems, pertaining to the early and underresearched part of his oeuvre. The analysis is centered around the image of Russia. In his poetry, Solzhenitsyn formulates the basic artistic characteristics of this image, that are further developed and deepened in his prose. The image of Russia consists of two toposes: “the visceral Russia”, that embodies the author’s ideal, as well as “the orphaned Russia”, that reflects the country’s “pain points” or its most acute problems. The image of “the visceral Russia” is created under the influence of Christian traditions and the early lyrics of S. Yesenin. Its key elements are landscapes, pantheistic dissolvment in the world of nature, hesychasm and related to it notions of silence and color symbolism. The image of “orphaned Russia” is divided into “the free Russia” and “the Gulag Russia”. It echoes A. Blok’s poetry and demonstrates the historically ambivalent and dramatic sides of Russian history. Despite the spatial categorizations, the lyrical hero’s perception of his motherland is not fragmented, but objective and multi-sided. Like the author himself, he views Russia as a whole in all of its struggles and contradictions.

Keywords: A. Solzhenitsyn, camp poems, the image of Russia, ideal Russia, “orphaned Russia”.



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