Работы по французской литературе XVII века
The Chapter is devoted to understanding the concept of "reading" in the French culture of the XVII century, special attention is paid to women's salons
The article is devoted to the phenomenon of incompleteness of the book "Thoughts" by B. Pascal
The article analyzes the reception of the “Secret History” pamphlet written by Procopius of Caesarea, a 7th century AD Byzantine historian, author of well-known panegyric texts about the Basileus Justinian. The manuscript of this pamphlet was found by an hellenophile Niccolo Alemanni and published in 1623 in Lyon as “Anekdota” (this literary work was first mentioned under this Greek title, meaning “unedited notes,” in “Suda,” a 10th century AD Greek encyclopedic lexicon). 17th century French historians and writers perceived “Secret History” as a unique attempt to see behind the curtain of byzantine history and to learn the true causes of great events. Antoine de Varillas, a famous historian, tried to create a “secret history” based on the history of the Medici Florence. The article argues that in the 17th century, the meaning and pragmatics of this work by Procopius were understood in an incorrect way: the text of “Secret History” could have been created as an exercise in rhetoric, in which Procopius was showing his abilities not only as a writer of panegyrics but also as a master of “inverted” praise. To support this hypothesis, the article provides examples related to the descriptions of Justinian as a demon, tracing their origin to the characters from “The Testament of Solomon”, as well as pornographic scenes dealing with the basilissa’s follies that resemble rhetorically hypertrophied exempla from the oratory skills manuals (progymnasmata) by Hermogenes of Tarsus.
The article concerns the analysis of “Oedipus”, a tragedy by P. Corneille, staged in Paris in January 1659. The play, created on the advice of Superintendent N. Fouquet, has substantial plot differences as compared with classical Oedipus story schemes, dating back to Sophocles and Seneca. Corneille has considerably shortened the tale about the life of Oedipus and Jocasta, and, at the same time, developed the story of Laius’ daughter Dirce and her lover Theseus. While analyzing, the author comes to the conclusion that the central subject-matter of Corneille’s tragedy is the search for 270 Новый филологический вестник. 2019. №2(49). 271 a true king, a blood descendant of Laius, who could sacrifice himself in order to save Thebes from plague. Initially, Oedipus does not understand his mission, nevertheless, towards the end of the play, he becomes a real king, embodiment of the state as a whole. There is a hypothesis that such political pathos could be explained mostly by historical realia of the Fronde, by the tender age of Louis XIV, as well as by pragmatic orientation of the play towards high society audience, for whose pleasure Corneille ‘softened’ the dreadful details of the ancient myth, and developed Dirce’s and Theseus’ characters in conformity with the principles of gallantry. The author comes to a conclusion that the play with a modified ancient plot turns out to be the embodiment of the ‘beautiful infidels’ translation strategy, which is based on a pragmatic change of the initial text in accordance with the needs of a certain public. It has been suggested that Corneille could have become with his play, willingly or unwillingly, a partisan of the ideas of the French high society and Fouquet, whose arrest in 1661 was one of the first independent steps of Louis XIV as a French monarch.
The article traces the sources of Molière’s play “The Affected Ladies” (“Les Précieuses ridicules”), which mocks behavior and talk characteristic of ‘précieuses’ – the refined ladies who frequented the exquisite French salons of the mid 17th century. The comedy turns out to be a dramatic cento, i.e. a text composed of stereotypic theatrical situations and of links to the Italian and French treatises on elegance.