The Ontology of Death in M. Shishkin’s Novel The Letter Book

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The purpose of the study is to characterize the understanding of the phenomenon of death in M. Shishkin’s novel The Letter Book . In this work, as well as in the literary world of Shishkin in general, the category of death appears as one of the most important objects of reflection. The opposite facets in comprehension of this phenomenona are revealed: death as unconditional evil and monstrous absurdity (which is emphasized by the numerous anti-aesthetic characteristics of the images of dying and death in the novel), but at the same time, the phenomenon of death and the evil that it carries in itself are overcome, and mortality in the literary sphere of the novel is regarded not only as a destructive beginning, but also as a necessary element of ontological balance and an expression of the wisdom of the world order hidden from imperfect human consciousness. The idea of the deep internal unity of the categories of death and love in the novel is argued. Shishkin’s paradoxical idea of the thanatological element as a sphere of life creation is understood. Conclusions about the neomodernism guidelines of the writer’s work are formulated.

About the authors

Daria V. Krotova

Lomonosov Moscow State University

Author for correspondence.

Candidate of Philology, Associate Professor of the Department of Modern Russian Literature and Contemporary Literary Process of the Philological Faculty

1 Leninskie Gory, Moscow, 119991, Russian Federation


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