ISSN / EISSN : 0258-0802 / 1648-1143
Current Publisher: Vilnius University Press (10.15388)
Total articles ≅ 770
Latest articles in this journal
Literatūra, Volume 62, pp 46-53; doi:10.15388/litera.2020.4.4
Drawing on the theoretical premises of imagology and geocriticism, the article analyzes the aesthetic experience of the traveler who traverses Lithuanian cities (Vilnius, Kaunas, Klaipėda), walks across small towns, stops over in villages, and makes his way to the seaside. The local aesthetic identity of the newly discovered country, i.e. its beauty and/or loathsomeness, is revealed by the author Jean Mauclère through a few perspectives: on the one hand, it is the beauty of nature, folk and professional art (architectural exteriors and interiors, fine arts, music), the physical type of Lithuanian men and women. This identity, as Mauclère suggests, reveals itself in the contexts of local history, traditions and culture. Although the author seeks to remain objective in his description of his new aesthetic experience in Lithuania, he remains a representative of his own French culture and its traditions nonetheless. On the other hand, he underlines the otherness of the novelty of his experience.
Literatūra, Volume 62, pp 8-23; doi:10.15388/litera.2020.1.1
The analysis of professors in Humanities at Vilnius University in 1948–1956, the period of studies and post-graduate course of Donatas Sauka, established that professors who had not accepted the doctrine of Marxism-Leninism and who had obtained their academic titles in independent Lithuania or pre-revolutionary Russia had left the university. During the first year of Soviet rule, a group of persons who had contributed to Lithuania’s incorporation into the USSR and undertaken to establish the doctrine at the university became professors. They were active in the 1940s and 1950s and created a climate of fear. Some lecturers who were neutral towards the doctrine had been granted the title of professors for their contribution to the science in order to raise the prestige of the university. A cluster of lecturers who attempted to interpret literature without applying primitive sociologisation was formed in the Department of Lithuanian Literature in mid 1950s. At the initiative of the Central Committee of the Lithuanian Communist Party, actions were taken (1956–1961) to force the group of young lecturers to follow the requirements of the doctrine. Having defied the requirements, they were dismissed. D. Sauka belonged to the group, but had retained his job as a lecturer without changing his views towards the doctrine. Some professors, associate professors, and students at the university participated in the ideological cleansing of the Department of Lithuanian Literature. They were later promoted. During the 1960s, among literary scholars only Jurgis Lebedys became a professor. At that time, high qualification requirements for obtaining a professor’s title were set in the USSR. Those who had obtained the titles of professors had different approaches towards the doctrine of Marxism-Leninism. Some showed support only formally and expanded the scope of analysed issues by slowly validating new fields of knowledge and developed individual thinking; others attained high qualification and performed the actions of implementing the doctrine required by the party leaders; still others sought their personal goals by using maintenance of the doctrine as a pretext. The guardians of the doctrine created obstacles for unwanted persons in becoming professors by trying to prevent them from defending their doctoral (post-doctoral) theses and publishing their articles and works; they tried to create a wall of silence around them. In the 1970s, D. Sauka and Vytautas Kubilius defended their doctoral (post-doctoral) theses; both of them had surpassed the topics defined by the doctrine and opened new fields of knowledge in Lithuanian literature and culture. Attempts were made to prevent them from defending their theses, but thanks to the vigilance of his colleagues, D. Sauka defended his thesis and became a professor after four years. The approval of V. Kubilius’s doctoral (post-doctoral) title lasted six years, yet one of the strongest literary critics and scholars was not granted the title of professor from the Soviet university. In the 1980s, a number of students at Vilnius University obtained titles of professors. The doctrine itself had changed at that time, the communist government avoided scandals, the level of mentality was higher at the university, and simultaneously, the behaviour of lecturers themselves was self-censored; some of the guardians of the doctrine had voluntarily abandoned their position and those who appreciated the works of their talented colleagues appeared. At the juncture of the 1980s and 1990s, professors of Vilnius University became more prominent in the society: these were personalities that developed individual thinking of their own and others, done valuable work for the culture of Lithuania, retained relations with the nation and had the goal of creating an independent state of Lithuania.
Literatūra, Volume 62, pp 87-89; doi:10.15388/litera.2020.1.6
Dalia Čiočytė, Asta Gustaitienė, Dalia Jakaitė, Marijus Šidlauskas, Krikščionybė ir šiuolaikinė lietuvių literatūra / Kolektyvinė monografija / Sudarė Dalia Čiočytė, Vilnius: Vilniaus universiteto leidykla, 2018, ISBN 978-609-07-0070-9 (spausdinta knyga), ISBN 978-609-07-0069-3 (skaitmeninis PDF), 592 p. Monografija parengta ir išleista kaip Lietuvos mokslo tarybos projektas, sutarties Nr. LIP-16363.
Literatūra, Volume 62, pp 8-22; doi:10.15388/litera.2020.4.1
The present article explores Frau Ava’s (1060–1127) apocalyptic poem Antichrist, in which, for the first time in German literature, the opponent of Christ is the protagonist. Antichrist will be Frau Ava’s second poem translated into Lithuanian. By drawing on canonic and apocryphal texts of the Scripture as well as on patristic literature, the article aims to identify traces of written and oral forms of Christian apocalyptic tradition found in the poem. The main focus will be on Adso Dervensis’ (circa 910–992) text De ortu et tempore Antichristi. The analysis of the composition of Antichrist suggests that Ava did not only translate and compile well-known narratives and motifs but also displayed a variety of artistic expressions unattested in apocalyptic tradition. Moreover, the article provides a Lithuanian translation of 118 lines of the poem.
Literatūra, Volume 62, pp 30-45; doi:10.15388/litera.2020.4.3
The paper discusses the personal and political relations between the French surrealist poet Paul Éluard and Serbian writers and intellectuals, first of all Marko Ristić, a theorist and one of the founders of the Serbian surrealist movement. We will show the reception of Éluard’s works in the Serbian cultural space, his visit to Yugoslavia, then Éluard’s activities in Paris related to Yugoslav politics. One significant part of the article represents, until now, unpublished archival documents that testify to the friendship between Éluard and Ristić. We will try to explain how this friendship ended after the Cominform Resolution in 1948 and what consequences it had on Serbian and French culture.
Literatūra, Volume 62, pp 23-29; doi:10.15388/litera.2020.4.2
Using insights from comparative imagology the image of Vilnius in Joseph Arthur Gobineau’s novel The Pleiades (1874) has been analysed in the paper. Presumably, the name of Vilnius was first mentioned by Olympe Chodzko, his Parisian acquaintance, in her short story, its scene is laid in Vilnius. The way Vilnius is imaged depends on context. Where Vilnius is compared to the privileged Saint-Honoré quarter in Paris a tinge of phobia arises unavoidably because Vilnius in no way is comparable to Paris. Likewise is imaged Vilnius by Sophie Tonska, Marquis Candeuil’s sweetheart. Marquis Candeuil selected Vilnius for his residence from seven possible cities accidentally, by drawing lots. That attitude of the protagonist can be related to idiocracy. Where the author writes about Vilnius in the St. Petersburg-Warsaw railroad construction context his philia can be felt. Vilnius is imaged not only in this context, but also through Marquis Candeuil’s thoughts pertaining to the essential problems raised in the novel. Finally, all that reveals that the image of Vilnius in the novel, at first glance so unintentional, actually pertains to the whole system of the novel.
Literatūra, Volume 62, pp 45-72; doi:10.15388/litera.2020.1.4
The article describes the syllabi of Lithuanian language subject for public and private schools prepared in 1905-1914 for the developing modern Lithuanian education system with the aim to determine the extent of representation of Žemaitė’s literary fiction. Referring to previous works by V. Pupšys, V. Pukienė, M. Karčiauskienė, A. Piročkinas and analysis of their sources, 9 syllabi of Lithuanian language and their recommended textbooks have been described in this article. The analysis has shown that Žemaitė first established herself in the Lithuanian education system as the author of the textbook Rinkinėlis vaikams, first published in 1904 and intended for primary schools. Žemaitė emerges as the author of short stories and a co-author of dramas for the first time in 1912 in the syllabus published by J. Kairiūkštis. The attention allocated to her and the list of her works is the same as for the majority of other fiction authors of the time. In 1912 M. Biržiška’s project of the Lithuanian language syllabus Žemaitė is referred to as one of the four women prose writers of the end of the 19th century among G. Petkevičaitė-Bitė, Šatrijos Ragana, and Lazdynų Pelėda.
Literatūra, Volume 62, pp 24-33; doi:10.15388/litera.2020.1.2
The article aims at highlighting the uniqueness of thinking and academic activity of Donatas Sauka, who for many years was a professor at the Department of Lithuanian Literature of Vilnius University. The article reveals his scholarly ambitions – broad interests, good knowledge of classic Western literature, and an attempt to keep the achievements of natural sciences on the horizon of humanities. However, he harboured artistic and poetic inclinations in his nature; he has translated a number of classical texts required for his research. The philological interests of the professor were permeated by self-reflection. Comparative literature science was his field of research – even though his other interests also competed for his attention, he analysed methodological issues, different scopes of national literatures and paradoxes of literary analysis. He also raised an essential question for comparison – from what and how are clusters of literary identity formed; how they are related to the mental history and language of a nation; how creative incentives are formed and how they operate.
Literatūra, Volume 62, pp 73-86; doi:10.15388/litera.2020.1.5
Bronius Krivickas (1919–1952), a Lithuanian poet and fiction writer, a fighter against the Soviet occupation of Lithuania, reflects carefully the main ideas of existentialism: Søren Kierkegaard’s concept of individual freedom, Martin Heidegger’s notion of being-toward-death, the concept of a limiting situation developed by Karl Jaspers. In the worldview of B. Krivickas’s literary works, these ideas are associated with the context of Catholic philosophy and theology.This article investigates the notion of God within the existential limiting situation (especially the situation of death) in the literary works by B. Krivickas. The main critical perspective is the theology of literature. In the context of the dramatic experience of World War II, B. Krivickas’s short stories, a symbolist play A Tale About a Princess, and poetical prose works interpret God as being perceived through human conscience and a human longing for spiritual harmony. God is being thought of as the ultimate metaphysical mystery.In the period of Lithuanian fights for freedom, B. Krivickas’s poetry reveals an intense partisan self-consciousness. The poetry interprets the fight against the Soviet aggressor as a sacrifice for the nation’s freedom and compares it indirectly with the ultimate sacrifice of Jesus Christ. According to the logic of existentialism, B Krivickas’s poetry claims that a human being is absolutely free, even if this means to choose freedom at the cost of life.God becomes the personal you for the fighter seen in B. Krivickas’s poetry. The main theme of the fighter’s dialogue with God is an existential complaint. The fighter experiences deep theodic dilemmas. He has no doubts about the righteousness of the war against the Soviet occupation, but he has deep doubts about the divine permission for evil to exist in the world. The faith of the poetic fighter is just his will to believe, his desire to believe. Thus the poetic figure of the fighter acquires both patriotic and religious heroism.
Literatūra, Volume 62, pp 34-44; doi:10.15388/litera.2020.1.3
The article discusses Donatas Sauka’s study An Epilogue of Faust’s Age (1998) in order to assess the reference to “comparative literature science” expressed in the introduction to the study. The psychological and subjective motivation of comparative research arising from the context of the genesis of the work is interpreted: an aim to overcome the cultural isolation of Soviet-era humanitarian and to go beyond the methodologically narrow and largely directive Soviet-era comparative studies.It is argued that An Epilogue of Faust’s Age is a synthetic study in the field of comparative studies and world literature research, the conceptual unity of which is ensured by the attention to the category of the author in modern European literature and the state of modern consciousness revealed therein. Thus, D. Sauka in his study turns from literary comparative studies to the field of cultural studies and the history of ideas by forming a certain classical person of universal culture in the Lithuanian cultural and academic environment.