Literackie i rodzinne tajemnice z Wielką Wojną w tle. O "Walce z szatanem" Stefana Żeromskiego
Literary and Family Secrets with the Great War in the Background. On Stefan Żeromski's "Walka z szatanem"
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This article attempts to explain the mysteries of "the weakest novel" of Żeromski. It is argued on the basis of the writer's correspondence and textual analysis of the "Walka z Szatanem" that both the genesis of this work, its stylistic and story inconsistencies are motivated by a particular personal situation, in which the writer was at the beginning of the 1913. It seems that this quite unexpected decision – in the context of earlier writing plans – on a new contemporary novel undertaking the subject of major social movements on the eve of the World War I, and requiring studies in the libraries of Western Europe, was a pretext to justify Żeromski's trip to Italy for Anna Zawadzka who was expecting a birth of their child. Unfavourable for quiet work working conditions (his son Adaś at risk of tuberculosis and his wife, Oktawia, stayed in Zakopane, both unaware of Żeromski's relationship with Anna for a long time) are reflected in the structure of the text, which in a surprisingly high degree co-match with the prescribed or paraphrased by Żeromski excerpts of books, brochures, and notes of other authors. The article aims to trace the intertwined, difficult, and complicated fate of the writer, his work and history.
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