GODUNOVSKÉ ÚVAHY. MOŽNOSTI INSCENOVANIA HISTORICKEJ DRÁMY
Thoughts on the possibilities of staging Pushkin’s historical drama Boris Godunov
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The aim of the present paper, written after the 19th Pushkin festival in Pskov, is to explore Pushkin’s drama Boris Godunov that had never been staged despite its importance and attractiveness for Slovak culture and history. The author tries to prove her statement by analysing Pushkin’s play from the perspective of religious history. She shows that the problem is usually simplified to the struggle of Latin/byzantine, resp. Polish/ Russian conflict, omitting other possibilities. In accordance with Pushkin’s understanding of history, she sees the pretender Dmitri (Otrepiev) as a representative of the third – unionist – tendency. By founding the Moscow patriarchate (1589), Boris Godunov accomplished the process started by the refusal of the Union of Florence by Vasili II., the Blind. Reaction to it had been the local Brest-Litovsk Union (1595) changing Constantinople jurisdiction for that of Rome – thus, inevitably strengthening the Latin cultural influence over the byzantine Christendom. But Dmitri’s unionism is not purely defensive if we consider his plan to liberate the city of Constantinople. Classifying Dmitri´s tragic position in history as both utopian and visionary, the author draws attention to the last image of Pushkin´s drama where we encounter Dmitri quietly sleeping – and with him the idea of Florence. Faithfull to history, Pushkin never directly confronts the antagonist heroes of his play Boris and Dmitri, as we could expect from the title of drama, but he weights their positions employing an extremely radical symmetry of situations to express the archetypal positions of Russian society: nationalist and universalist. Drama is composed of suggestive scenes but at the same time, in its composition remains impartial and so its significance lay in the vibration of the question posed. Consequently, Pushkin’s compassion for Godunov’s tragic death, yet at the same time overt sympathy to Dmitri, had not been staged for reasons of ideology and the lack of general historical knowledge, respectively.
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