2012 | 61 | 1 | 49-63
Article title

Groteska i absurd w twórczości Wiktora Pielewina (reminiscencja prozy Mikołaja Gogola)

Title variants
Grotesque and absurd in the works of Victor Pelevin (reminiscence of Nikolai Gogol’s prose)
Languages of publication
Time for changes came also in the area of culture together with political, social and mental changes in the 90s of 20th century. Russian literature began its unknown new way. The postmodernists appeared on the Russian literature stage. Victor Pelevin and Vladimir Sorokin – two the most popular Russian postmodernist writers created literature that was very popular in Russia in 90s and readers in Poland are still interested in it till today. The problem of contemporary Russian literature which refers to Russian traditional literature is considered in this article. The aim of these considerations was to show a picture of grotesque and absurdity in literature creation of Victor Pelevin. We can see in his novels and tales that he refers to Russian writers: Dostoyevsky, Nabokov, Bulhakov and also to Nikolai Gogol and to its simple and warm sense of humour, to caricature of reality and comic situations. In this article there are widely described such tales as: Omon Ra and Generation ‘P’ and also Life of Insects, Buddha’s Little Finger, The Sacred Book of the Werewolf. Pelevin is cynical about Soviet reality and different absurd phenomena in the Soviet Union. He also criticises contemporary Russia. In Pelevin’s prose crime, corruptions, the beginning of Russian capitalisms, all the media, the world of advertisement and Russian mentality are criticized.Viktor Pelevin plays with the grotesque and absurdity, he shows the world full of fantasy. He makes it with a big portion of irony. Pelevin shows trivial events in such a way that they begin to make sense and he does all that just to show the most important problems of Russia. Contemporary version of grotesque of Pelevin has a lot in common with the world created by Gogol. Pelevin criticizes Moscow in a very similar way as Gogol does. Gogol shows 19th century Petersburg as a destructive force which destroys people’s character. We can observe great influence of the city on people both in Gogol’s tales and in the Pelevin’s novel Generation ‘P’. There is no room for clear statements and logics in Pelevin’s postmodernistic vision of the world. The writer puts on an ironic mask, he does not ask questions and he gives no solutions: in this way the author doesn’t mark and value modern Russia. The reader is forced to give marks.
Physical description
  • Instytut Rosji i Europy Wschodniej Uniwersytetu Jagiellońskiego, Al. Mickiewicza 3, 31-120 Kraków, Poland
Document Type
Publication order reference
YADDA identifier
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