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Forms and methods of functioning of the “Shakesperean text” in the novel about the Great Bard by M. Berkolaiko

Liberal Arts in Russia. 2022. Vol. 11. No. 3. Pp. 189-198.
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Ishimbaeva G. G.
Bashkir State University
32 Zaki Validi Street, 450076 Ufa, Republic of Bashkortostan, Russia


The article is devoted to the notion of “Shakespearean text” (the artistic and aesthetic complex of Shakespeare’s ideas, his vision of the past, present and future; the system of the artistic world presented in the works of the Great Bard; the set of an infinite number of interpretations of Shakespeare’s life and work, his philosophy and poetics) and clarifies the content of the “Shakespearean text” of M. Berkolaiko’s novel (creative reception of the heritage of the classic and key issues of Shakespeare studies, biographical myth, intertextual connection with World literature). The special attention is paid to the title of the novel, which encodes the triad as the main principle of the text structuring, where the writer explores life as a movement from birth to death and immortality, creativity as finding harmony between “enlightenment”, “play”, “understanding”, and real literature is defined only by theme of life, death and love. It is proved that the “Shakespearean text” of the novel is formed by three main macro-components: the “Shakespearean authorship” and the image of Shakespeare; plots and images from the playwright’s works and their reception in literary criticism and in the comments by Roger Manners; intertextual dialogue between Shakespeare’s works and Russian and World literature. It is concluded that 1) the “Shakespearean authorship” motivates the development of the novel’s action and determines the forms of narration - the judgement over technocratic civilization of the future, the psychological investigation of the confusing relationships of three characters (Roger Manners, his wife Elizabeth, Will Shakespeare), philological reflection on the Shakespearean creativity type; 2) Shakespearean conflicts, quotations, allusions and reminiscences serve to describe the characters’ personalities of the three levels of the narrative and acquire new meanings; 3) the intertext of the “novel about how masterpieces arose” also serves the same purpose.


  • • M. Berkolaiko
  • • Shakespearean text


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