Interlitteraria 2018-02-06T12:18:47+02:00 Jüri Talvet Open Journal Systems <table style="background-color: #ffffff;" border="0" cellspacing="3" cellpadding="3"><tbody><tr valign="top"><td width="25%">Founded in 1996, <em>Interlitteraria</em> is the peer-reviewed journal of the Chair of Comparative Literature of the University of Tartu and the Estonian Association of Comparative Literature. <em>Interlitteraria</em> publishes original articles in English, French, German and Spanish, in the field of comparative literature.</td><td width="25%">Revue à comité de lecture fondée en 1996, <em>Interlitteraria</em> est publiée par la chaire de Littérature comparée de l'université de Tartu et l'Association estonienne de littérature comparée. <em>Interlitteraria</em> publie des articles originaux en anglais, en allemand, en français et en espagnol, touchant princi­palement le domaine de la littérature comparée.</td><td width="25%"><em>Interlitteraria</em> wurde im Jahr 1996 als international begutachtete Zeit­schrift am Lehrstuhls für ver­gleichende Literatur­wissen­schaft der Universität Tartu und der Assoziation der Vergleichenden Literatur­wissen­schaft in Estland gegründet. <em>Interlitteraria</em> ver­öffent­licht englische, franzö­sische, deutsche und spanische Original­artikel, vor­nehmlich aus dem Bereich der vergleichenden Literatur­wissen­schaft.</td><td width="25%">Fundada en 1996, <em>Interlitteraria</em> es la revista con arbitraje de expertos promovida por la Cátedra de Literatura Comparada de la Universidad de Tartu y la Asocia­ción Estonia de Literatura Com­parada. <em>Interlitteraria</em> publica artículos originales en inglés, francés, alemán y español rela­tivos al campo de la litera­tura com­parada.</td></tr></tbody></table> Introduction 2018-01-16T15:18:48+02:00 Jüri Talvet Katre Talviste Introduction 2018-01-16T15:18:48+02:00 ##submission.copyrightStatement## The Ethics of Aesthetics 2018-01-16T15:18:48+02:00 Knut Brynhildsvoll In my article I shall deal with the role of modern literary criticism as exercised by critics working for influential newspapers, journals and public media. I will discuss the evaluating standards and the judgment criteria. I will also examine the independence and moral integrity of critics working in close cooperation with big publishing houses. An important part of my article will focus on the jeopardized balance in book business which threatens to make the critics vulnerable to compromises and loss of ethical credibility. As a consequence of the critic’s cooperation with the sales departments of the publishing houses, he might overlook good literature and promote best-sellers, thus giving priority to a category of books which seldom proves to be of lasting value. 2018-01-16T15:18:48+02:00 ##submission.copyrightStatement## Aesthetics and Ethics Intertwined: Fictional and Non-Fictional Worlds 2018-02-06T12:18:47+02:00 Jonathan Locke Hart Montaigne and Las Casas are important thinkers and writers, as are many others, including Shakespeare, as a poet, whose work is complex enough in its modernity that it would be hard to condemn him as a poet as Plato did Homer. Aristotle analyzed Greek tragedy to see how it worked in terms of a framework of anagnorisis and catharsis, that is, recognition and the purging of pity and terror. Shakespeare revisits and reshapes Homer in <em>Troilus and Cressida</em> and remakes Plutarch in <em>Julius Caesar</em> and <em>Antony and Cleopatra</em> while playing on the classical epic and mythological themes in <em>Venus and Adonis</em> and <em>Rape of Lucrece</em>. Plato, a poet as well as a philosopher, and a great writer if one does not like those categories, may have feared the poet within himself. Although assuming with Plato that philosophy is more universal and just than poetry, Aristotle takes the analysis of poetry and drama seriously in <em>Poetics</em>, and also discusses ethics, aesthetics and style in <em>Rhetoric</em>. So, while I discuss Plato as a framework, I am not presuming that writing on the relations among the good, the true, the just and the beautiful stop with him. I am also making the assumption that Las Casas, Montaigne, Shakespeare and other poets and writers deserve to be taken seriously in the company of Plato. Las Casas and Montaigne respond to radically changing realities and shake the very basis of traditional ethics (especially in understanding of the “other”) and work in harmony with the greatest poets and writers of a new era often called modernity like Shakespeare, who is in the good company of Manrique, Villon, Ronsard, Du Bellay, Juan de la Cruz, Luis de León, Lope de Vega, Quevedo and Calderón. Long before, Dante and Petrarch were exploring in their poetry ethical and aesthetic imperatives and broke new ground doing so. Nor can Las Casas and Montaigne be separated from other great writers like Rabelais and Cervantes, who carry deep philosophical and ethical sensibility in their work while responding to reality by providing aesthetically – even sensuously – shaped images that always leave a margin for ambiguity because conflicts are part of an ambiguous reality. 2018-01-16T15:18:49+02:00 ##submission.copyrightStatement## Literary Education and the Ethics of Expansion: Principles, Processes and Examples 2018-01-16T15:18:49+02:00 Yolanda Caballero Aceituno This contribution is rooted in my vision of literary education as a humanistic practice devoted to expanding the students’ ideological and imaginative horizons. My efforts as a lecturer have always been aimed at exemplifying what, from my point of view, could be considered one of the main beliefs articulating ethical literary criticism: the power of literature to bring about meaningful social changes by empowering readers to extend their cosmovision beyond reductionist macro-discourses. This potential of literature can be activated by fostering a teaching practice based on some ethical principles, the anatomy of which will be modestly examined in this essay out of my personal experience and exemplified with references to the works by some writers. From a theoretical point of view, this contribution also drinks from Jüri Talvet’s “call for cultural symbiosis” (2005) between ‘self ’ and ‘other’ as a way of overcoming interested separations and impoverishing mutilations. Likewise, and following Yuri M. Lotman’s cultural semiotics, my approach sees the literature classroom as a space where the valuable tensions between ‘centre’ and ‘periphery’ within a given semiosphere can be analysed and seen as opportunities for the generation and addition of new meanings and ideas. 2018-01-16T15:18:49+02:00 ##submission.copyrightStatement## On the Ethics of Interpretation: are Young Readers to Blame? 2018-01-16T15:18:49+02:00 Indrė Žakevičienė The author of the article will discuss the problem of validity thinking about the basic statements of Literary Ethics. Though the problems Literary Ethics emphasizes are global and at the same time rather abstract, the efforts of literary researchers to educate readers with the help of novels are understandable but seem ineffectual. Young readers are not capable of understanding complicated texts of the previous century because of the different contents of their mental spaces or the different schemes of thinking. Literary Ethics speaks about the importance of the role of emotions while reading novels, but the spectrum of primary emotions young readers experience while reading complicated literary texts blocks all the ways to deeper understanding and the ability to analyze specific ethical issues encoded in the novels. The theory of emotions explains the situation and in a way rehabilitates young readers. Nevertheless, particular transformations of genres or of the original form of literary texts could evoke the readers’ interest and make them think deeper or extend the realm of interpretations by relating particular “genre markers” and rethinking their codes. 2018-01-16T15:18:49+02:00 ##submission.copyrightStatement## How Fairy Tales Educate and Civilize Us: Ethical Literary Criticism on Fairy Tales 2018-01-16T15:18:49+02:00 Li Xiaoyi This article first discusses the history and ideology of fairy tales. As Walter Benjamin said in his essay “The Storyteller”, rumors and information were spread verbally, from person to person. So were fairy tales. Through storytelling, the history and experience is spread from generation to generation. So that audience, especially children, gather to listen to the folks and stories about things “long long ago”, sharing the memories and experience of the storytellers. Based on this idea, the article further analyses the utopian function of fairy tales, which depict the feasibility of utopian alternatives by means of fantastic images. Because in the name of fairy tales, anything is possible. Apart from hope and wish, there was dissatisfaction in fairy tales. Ernst Bloch placed special emphasis on dissatisfaction as a condition which ignites the utopian drive, so that it remains a powerful cultural force among the audience, urges them to resist, to change the unreasonable things in the world. At last, it comes to the ethical use of fairy tales with children. Many scholars, like Bruno Bettelheim and Julius E. Heuscher, have done some psychiatric and psychological research on the meaning and usefulness of fairy tales. Different from those, this article mainly talks about the literary education in fairy tales, how the words, characters and plots play a role in education. 2018-01-16T15:18:49+02:00 ##submission.copyrightStatement## Autobiography and Ethical Literary Criticism 2018-01-16T15:18:49+02:00 Florence Kuek Ling Tek Soon Autobiographies are traditionally understood as means of selfredemption or self-validation of the respective autobiographers, but they seem to have become tools of self-assertion in the recent times. The writers of this paper noticed that the underlying patterns in major autobiographies of the respective centuries such as those of Augustine, Rousseau, Virginia Woolf, Han Suyin and other male or female autobiographers commonly evolve around one’s ethical choices in response to the vices caused by one’s natural will and when facing ethical dilemmas caused by life challenges. This paper examines the abovementioned autobiographies via the Ethical Literary Criticism (ELC). Developed by Professor Nie Zhenzhao since 2004, ELC is one of the most insightful critiques in expounding the relationship of the self with oneself, self with others, and self with the divine or higher moral order in the context of the literary world. 2018-01-16T15:18:49+02:00 ##submission.copyrightStatement## Intersections of African-American Womanist Literary Approaches and Paradigms of Ethical Literary Criticism 2018-01-16T15:18:50+02:00 Agnieszka Łobodziec Although black American womanist literary perspectives and ethical literary criticism theory emerged from different socio-cultural contexts, a number of intersections between the two can be discerned. One of the objectives of this paper is to analyze the reasons for which some Chinese scholars and African-American women literary theoreticians are skeptical of mainstream Western literary criticism schools, which they view as insufficient for exploring works of literature derived from fusions of non-Western and Western cultural contexts. Secondly, the paper elucidates the particular value systems exhibited by fictional characters portrayed by the African-American women writers under survey. At this juncture, the means by which the writers challenge value systems based upon Western essentialist racial conceptualizations will be given primary attention. Also, the historical context of the development of womanist ethics and literary practice, particularly the manifestation of original social ethics in response to historical oppression, will be focused upon. Lastly, the didactic function of womanist literature will be considered because, more often than not, black American woman writers have endeavored to produce fiction that serves as guideposts towards conflict resolutions, involving, to a great extent, revaluation of mainstream values. 2018-01-16T15:18:50+02:00 ##submission.copyrightStatement## The Ethics of Romance: Edward Bellamy and American Historical Fiction 2018-01-16T15:18:50+02:00 Wang Tiao The author examines <em>The Duke of Stockbridge: A Romance of Shays’ Rebellion</em> (1879), a historical novel written by Edward Bellamy (1850–1898) in order to examine the ethics of Romance in the treatment of historical fiction. Edward Bellamy, most famous for his socialist novel, <em>Looking Backwards</em> (1888), himself looks backwards to examine the popular rebellion during the early post-revolutionary American democracy before the US Constitution was established. The striking feature of this novel is the way that it superimposes the romance genre onto political and historical events. Using the ethical criticism of J. Hillis Miller, Martha Nussbaum, Alasdair MacIntyre, and others, the paper examines the romance genre in relation to virtue ethics to analyze the ethical impulse in Bellamy’s historical novel. To what degree does romance – a literary genre that combines stock characters and stereotypical action – open itself up to analysis in terms of the “virtue ethics” of Nussbaum, MacIntyre, and others? To what degree does an analysis of Bellamy’s novel in these terms allow us to understand what I call the “rhetorical ethics” of a critic like Miller? An examination of the Genteel Literary Tradition prevalent at the time of Bellamy’s novel – as it manifests itself in language and historical representation – allows us to see more closely the relations among rhetoric, character and ethics in the historical novel. 2018-01-16T15:18:50+02:00 ##submission.copyrightStatement## Une façon de voir le monde. La violence comme sujet d’un discours éthique dans les années 1930 2018-01-16T15:18:50+02:00 Anne-Marie Le Baillif <p><strong>One Way to See the World. Violence as a Subject of the Ethical Discourse in the 1930s.</strong> Ethical literary criticism has made a spectacular comeback in the field of literary research. This form of criticism is described in France by Antoine Compagnon, professor at the Collège de France, as a “reflection on the values created and transmitted by literature”. It seems to us that the third volume of A. H. Tammsaare’s novel <em>Tõde ja õigus</em> (1931, translated into French as <em>Jours d’émeutes</em>), focuses on violence as an object of Ethical Literary Criticism. Does this text not echo the <em>Critique of Violence</em> (1921), written by his contemporary, Walter Benjamin?</p><p>Tammsaare’s character Indrek questions right, justice and ethic. He has to cope with his historical time and his family problems. Tammsaare depicts the opposition between the group ethic and the private one. Indrek rejects readymade thinking when adapting himself to situations, accordingly he makes a difference between the political violence and the private once. Ten years earlier, Benjamin had written a paper which had questioned the use of violence in preserving law and justice. He had included in his remarks also ethical and religious problems. Privately, Indrek obeys his mother’s request for euthanasia as a compensatory act for her sin he is the embodiment of. So, according to his values, his personal ethic requires him to restore his mother’s peace of mind. This act puts him into a paradoxical situation out of which he has to find his own way according to his own ethical standards.</p> 2018-01-16T15:18:50+02:00 ##submission.copyrightStatement## Humor as a Survival Technique during Communism in Romania 2018-01-16T15:18:50+02:00 Miruna Iacob Humour is generally considered a universal feature, but it is also a context-related notion and it may involve the specificity of a certain culture. The present paper attempts to explore the ethics of humor and its subversive nature perceived as a survival technique during the communist regime in Romania, with an emphasis on Ioan Groșan’s short story, <em>The Island</em>. Being in a constant battle with censorship, humour often proves to be a form of dissidence. Critical laughter functions as a corrective, undermining political principles and denouncing their inflexibility aimed at achieving a progressive social degradation. Therefore, a theoretical re-evaluation of the relationship between context and humor will reveal that the latter concept – with its forms and variations – becomes the escape from the gangrenous tissues of totalitarian societies. 2018-01-16T15:18:50+02:00 ##submission.copyrightStatement## Emigration in Estonian Literature: “Self” and “Other” in the Context of European Literature 2018-01-16T15:18:50+02:00 Anneli Mihkelev <p>The experience of emigration generated a new paradigm in Estonian culture and literature. After World War II Sweden became a new homeland for many people. Estonian culture and literature suddenly became divided into two parts. The political terror imposed restrictions on literature in homeland and the national ideology limited literature in the initial years of exile. Both were closed communities and were monolingual systems in a cultural sense because these systems avoided dialogue and the influence of other signs. It was a traumatic experience for nation and culture where the totalitarian political power and trauma have allied. The normal cultural communication was destroyed. But the most important thing at this time was memory, not just memory but entangled memory, which emigrants carried with them to the new homeland and which influenced people in Estonia. The act of remembering becomes crucial in the exile cultures.</p><p>Estonian literature in exile and in the homeland presents the fundamental images of opening or closing, escaping or staying, and of flight or fight. Surrealism as well as fantasy and science fiction as the literary styles reveal what is hidden in the unconscious of a poet or a person or even in the collective memory of a nation. Surrealism has played a certain role in our literature, but it has been different from French surrealism, it is a uniquely Estonian surrealism. At the same time Estonia was already a new homeland for many refugees from Russia who had escaped during the Revolution of 1917 and World War I. August Gailit and Oskar Luts wrote about that issue in different literary works. Luts entangled different memories in his novel <em>Tagahoovis</em> (<em>In the Backyard</em>, 1933): the memories of Estonians and the memories of Russian emigrants. He also entangled historical narratives about World War I, the Russian revolution and the young Estonian state in the 1920s. Luts wrote about common people who interpret historical narratives. The novel was also published in exile in 1969 in Toronto.</p> 2018-01-16T15:18:50+02:00 ##submission.copyrightStatement## Mariage, raison et sentiment chez Honoré de Balzac et Cao Xueqin. Le cas des <em>Mémoires de deux jeunes mariées</em> et du <em>Rêve dans le Pavillon rouge</em> 2018-01-16T15:18:51+02:00 Kan Chia-Ping <strong>Marriage, Reason and Sentiment in Honoré de Balzac and Cao Xueqin. The Case of <em>Letters of Two Brides</em> and <em>Dream of the Red Chamber</em>.</strong> In both Balzac’s (1799–1850) <em>Letters of Two Brides</em> (1845) and Cao’s (1715– 1763) <em>Dream of the Red Chamber</em> (1742–1764), we have two very determined young girls, ready for marriage, who dream of a more passionate life. Lacking family support, they are alone and adopt opposite behavior patterns. The first (Louise de Chaulieu / Lin Daiyu) stays the same and wants a marriage of love, while the second (Renée de Maucombe / Xue Baochai) resigns herself to a marriage of convenience arranged by her family. Their two destinies diverge: one experiences great love but dies prematurely; the other experiences family happiness but is a prisoner in a life of conventions. However, behind these oppositions, their differences appear superficial and seems to come only from the social and political context. The two destinies are ultimately closely related, until they almost merge. Not only does the stubbornness of the two heroines in the realization of their dream lead them to a similar situation, both authors have also come up with a very similar technique when exposing the same surprising result. In Balzac, the two heroines become “Siamese twins” thanks to the system of correspondence. In Cao’s case, it is thanks to a particular narrative technique that constantly relates both heroeines to each other. Finally, via their common reflections on the influence of “bad novels” on young girls, Balzac and Cao deliver us “a novel about novels”. The novel is a language vessel, and at the same time a metalanguage that reflects on the linguistic structure of the work. 2018-01-16T15:18:51+02:00 ##submission.copyrightStatement## The Gentleman as a Hero? (Mis)representations of Heroic Masculinity in W. M. Thackeray’s <em>Vanity Fair</em> 2018-01-16T15:18:51+02:00 Katri Sirkel The aim of the article is to analyse the concept of gentlemanliness with regard to heroic masculinity in W.M. Thackeray’s novel Vanity Fair. Set at the time of the Napoleonic Wars and written in the 1840s, the novel casts light on the controversial nature of the notion of gentleman. In the Victorian period, gentlemanliness came to be modelled on the principles of chivalry but there was nevertheless an implicit assumption originating from the Regency era that being a gentleman meant yielding to leisurely elegance rather than performing heroic deeds. Thackeray, whose formative years had passed in the Regency-tinted 1820s and early 1830s but who as a novelist gained maturity in the mid-nineteenth century, was acutely aware of the contradiction between the Regency and Victorian perceptions of gentlemanliness and the unease resulting therefrom. Thus, the paper argues that although the Regency standards of gentlemanliness were discarded as incompatible with Victorian heroic masculinity, they had a considerable influence on how heroism as a component of gentlemanliness was perceived in the Victorian era. The analysis of gentlemanliness focuses on the four principal male characters in the novel – Jos Sedley, Rawdon Crawley, George Osborne, and William Dobbin, of whom each represents aspects of gentlemanliness not entirely compatible with the Victorian heroic ideal. The article suggests that the characters take heroism as an asset for creating a heroic image rather than as a manifestation of heroic deeds, thus presenting vividly the contradiction within the concept of Victorian heroic masculinity. 2018-01-16T15:18:51+02:00 ##submission.copyrightStatement## Slovene-Friulian-Italian Literary Connections at the Beginning of the 20th Century: The Case of Alojz Gradnik and Select Friulian and Italian authors 2018-01-16T15:18:51+02:00 Ana Toroš Based on the case of Alojz Gradnik (1882–1967), this article deals with previously unresearched Slovene-Friulian-Italian literary connections that occurred during the last years of the Austro-Hungarian Empire and the first years after WWI along the border of today’s Slovenia (Goriška Brda) and Italy (the region of Friuli-Venezia Giulia: the Provinces of Gorizia, Udine and Trieste). The article highlights the parallels in motifs, themes, ideas and form, as well as the connections between Alojz Gradnik and select Friulian and Italian authors from this region. These links are the consequence of living in a joint cultural space and Gradnik’s Friulian family ties, especially with his cousin Maria Samer. The research uncovers certain differences in motifs, themes and ideas stemming from different national identities. Gradnik’s poetry is closest to Friulian lyrical poetry in their descriptions and experiences of a rural setting, predominantly the deep bond felt between the farming people and native land coupled with their terrible social strife. Gradnik and his contemporary Friulian authors also coincide in works with a nationalist theme – on the threshold of WWI both Slovene and Friulian authors infused their work with their personal vision for the future of their own community. They shared a negative literary depiction of the Austro-Hungarian Empire, and the wish to secure a better economic future, to protect and solidify their cultural heritage. Gradnik’s poetry and that of the contemporary Italian (irredentist) authors share a similar literary technique that depicted the national identities of today’s border between Italy and Slovenia; they were ideologically opposed however: while the Italians depicted the Italian view of the region, Gradnik highlights the presence of a Slavic element within the region. 2018-01-16T15:18:51+02:00 ##submission.copyrightStatement## Science Fiction In Latvian Literature 2018-01-16T15:18:51+02:00 Bārbala Simsone The present paper is devoted to the overview of the beginnings and development of the genre of science fiction in Latvian literature. Similarly to other popular fiction genres, science fiction in Latvian literature has not been very popular due to social and historical reasons; however, during the course of the 20th century several authors have at least partially approached the genre and created either fully fledged science fiction works or literary works with science fiction elements in them. The paper looks at the first attempts to create science fiction-related works during the beginning of the 20th century; it then provides an insight into three epochs when the genre received comparatively wider attention: 1) the 1930s produced mainly adventure novels with elements of science fiction mirroring the correspondent world tendencies of that time period; 2) the period between the 1960s and 80s saw authors who had the courage to leave the strict platform of Soviet Social Realism, experimenting with a variety of science fiction elements in the postmodern literary context which allowed for a wide metaphoric interpretation. This epoch also saw the emergence of a specific phenomenon – humorous / satiric science fiction which the authors employed in order to offer social criticism of the Soviet lifestyle; 3) the beginning of the 21st century saw the emergence of several science fiction works by a new generation of writers: these works presently comprise the majority of newly published science fiction. The paper outlines the main tendencies of the newest Latvian science fiction such as authors experimenting with a variety of themes, the preference for dystopian future scenarios and humour. The paper offers brief conclusions as to the possible future of Latvian science fiction in context of the current developments in the genre. 2018-01-16T15:18:51+02:00 ##submission.copyrightStatement## The “Black Sounds” of Ene Mihkelson’s <em>Katkuhaud</em> (‘Plague Grave’) and W. G. Sebald’s <em>Austerlitz</em>. Part II. Memory and Emotion 2018-01-16T15:18:52+02:00 Maire Jaanus Part I of this article appeared in <a href="/index.php/IL/article/view/IL.2016.21.2.14"><em>Interlitteraria</em> 2016, 21/2</a>. Part II elaborates on how Mihkelson and Sebald represent their experiences of emotional memory and their feelings of fear, grief, emptiness, and loneliness – in the post-World War II and our historical era. In its comparisons of Mihkelson and Sebald, and both with Lorca, the essay stresses the emotional affinities between human beings that may exist alongside linguistic, historical, political, and other cultural differences. 2018-01-16T15:18:52+02:00 ##submission.copyrightStatement## About the Authors 2018-01-16T15:18:52+02:00 About Authors About the Authors 2018-01-16T15:18:52+02:00 ##submission.copyrightStatement##