MOTIVE OF MARTYRDOM IN THE NOVEL BY V. SHAROV “THE RAISING OF LAZARUS”
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Abstract: The research is concerned with motive of martyrdom in the novel by V. Sharov “The Raising of Lazarus” (2002). In Christian culture martyrdom as a voluntary acceptance of suffering for the sake of faith has a sacred, metaphysical meaning. Firstly, it’s an opportunity for salvation and holiness. Secondly it is a proof of their faith and the existence of the divine, for which martyrs condemned themselves to suffering. The plot of the V. Sharov’s novel «The Raising of Lazarus» is focused on the reconstruction of the versions of historical reality by the characters. They are the victims and subjects of history in the first half of the twentieth century. In the late twentieth century the generation of their sons are creating the myth about martyrdom of their fathers. In the novel the victim characters sacralize their tortures and imitate them, but the descendants threat them as martyrs at the end of the social experiment. The plot of the novel reveals falsity of the aspirations of the characters for the search for righteous faith (Theognost), and the Messianic idea of saving Russia (Nikolay) through the acceptance of martyrdom. On the contrary, the plot confirms that the characters: firstly, run away from martyrdom; secondly, do not have the firm faith and belief; thirdly, they imitate martyrdom (foolishness for Christ of Theognost, Nikolay's false journey); fourthly, many of their actions are not motivated by the desire to serve the God, but by love collisions — jealousy and betrayal. The novel depicts people’s weaknesses and the search for faith by Theognost, rather than faith itself. Nikolay changes the grounds for his Messianic beliefs; martyrdom of the Russian people is deprived of any evidence and his road of sorrows is a mere description of events in his letters. The novel ruins the idea of the national martyrdom as a part of Messianic ideas, because social terror is understood as a rescue of the nation from profane values, and sorrows of the Russian people are interpreted as the basis for their feeling of having been chosen by the God. Thus, the motive of martyrdom in the novel of V. Sharov is transformed: the truth of the metaphysical world and the holiness of the martyrs, the teleological character of history are not confirmed, but, on the contrary, the absurdity of the national history is revealed as the ways of suffering and the tragic, religious nature of Russian consciousness, which endlessly creates myths about torment and violence.
Key words: LITERARY MOTIVES; BOOKS BURNING; ANTI-UTOPIA; CRISIS OF LITERATURE; RUSSIAN LITERATURE; RUSSIAN WRITERS; WRITING
Pantuhina, A. I. Motive of martyrdom in the novel by V. Sharov “The raising of Lazarus” / A. I. Pantuhina. In Philological Class. 2018. №2 (52). P. 146-152. DOI 10.26710/fk18-02-24 .