2019-04-04Zeitschriftenartikel DOI: 10.1515/slaw-2019-0004
‚Die Erfindung der Gegenwart‘
Penčo Slavejkovs fiktive Anthologie Auf der Insel der Seligen (1910) im Kontext europäischer Mystifikationspoetiken
Sprach- und literaturwissenschaftliche Fakultät
Slaveykov’s fictitious anthology On the Isle of the Blessed (Na Ostrova na blaženite, 1910) is among the most recognized and discussed works in Bulgarian literature and literary history. This literary project is often labeled “extraordinary” in its conceptual and projective power, and continues to generate new interpretations up to the present day. The focus on the Isle’s singular status in Bulgarian scholarship does however obstruct the view at times, regarding its entanglement in what could be called a European matrix of mystification practices and poetics, reaching from Scottish romanticism (James Macpherson’s Ossian project) to the scandalous forgeries of the Slavic national renaissance (the infamous Czech manuscript controversy for example), and onto the modern mask play, as represented for instance in Valery Bryusov’s Russian Symbolists (Russkie simvolisty, 1894–1895). The latter examples are examined in more detail, regarding intertextual and structural parallels with Slaveykov’s imaginary Isle. The article forwards the hypothesis that Slaveykov, explicitly aware of his precursors and their mystification models, no longer strives to “invent a tradition,” but, on the contrary, aims at simulating contemporaneity. Thus this contribution has a double aim: Firstly, to convey a comparative survey and analysis of the Isle of the Blessed within European contexts. Secondly, it intends to relate Slaveykov’s sophisticated poetics of forgery and pseudo-translation to contemporary research in this field, which understands literary fraud as the ground on which concepts of fictionality flourish in the first place.
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