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2013 | 62 | 3 | 369-390

Article title

Dekabryzm w świetle słów-kluczy w dokumentach programowych i poezji tajnych stowarzyszeń

Title variants

Decembrism in the Light of the Key-Words of the Programme Texts and Poetry of the Secret Societies’Members

Languages of publication



Any language is a tool to organize and recognize the reality and to communicate ideas to the other members of a society. All concepts reflect ideas but the latter usually have some variants. Not a concept alone but its content is the key to understand the words which create a language picture of the reality od a specific social group. In the period of the Decembrism some new words occured and meaning of the old ones was changed. The programme texts and poetry of the memebers of the Secret Societies 1816-1825 reflected some significant shift of the meaning of such words as: service, sacrifice, a state, etc. Moreover, some of these words, according to Victor Vinogradov, became a kind of „battle cries” of the epoch. In the article all the Decembrist's programme text were analysed as well as some of pieces of the poetry. The conclusions were: As early as in the beginning of the 19th century an utilitarian approach to religion was propagated. It was not only a process of politization of religion but also an effort to affect the peoples mind on subconscious level by using such key-words like service to the God, the right to be free and happy, the power to shape one's fate. Liberal understanding of freedom (svoboda) occured upon the background of traditional understanding od the phenomenon (volja). Split with the Tsar and negation of absolutism were both anticipated and exposed in the documents and poems. New ideas and the proposals to bring them into life were accompaniend by some moral dillemas. A language and a word are interrelated: the Decembrists believed that a word had creative power. That belief caused they paid great attention to the way how and what they spoke. Any act of speech was a deed for them. The last conclusion made us to consider the difference between „being authentic” and „being individual”. The article end with some remarks about the Decembrism upon the traditional patterns of the Russian culture.









Physical description


  • Uniwersytet Jagielloński, Instytut Rosji i Europy Wschodniej, al. Mickiewicza 3, 31-120 Kraków, Poland


Document Type

Publication order reference


YADDA identifier

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