Ukrainian National Academy of Science
Humanitarian Educational Centre
Criticism of Vladimir Propp’s
Theory on Genesis of Magic Fairy Tales’ Structure
Autograph – CHE UNSA
Olexander Kyryliuk. ANTI-PROPP. Criticism of Vladimir Propp’s Theory on Genesis of Magic Fairy Tales Structure. – Odessa: Autograph/CHE UNSA, 2009. – p. 50. (Engl.).
Separate English supplement (Topics) to the book:
Olexander Kyryliuk. Weltanschauung Categories of Ultimate Bases in the Universal Culture Dimensions. – [Ukrainian National Academy of Science Ninetieth Anniversary; In Commemoration of Academician Volodymyr Shуnkarуuk (80-th anniversary): Photo coupled with wife]. / Abst. in Russian. pp. 357-389/ Bibl. pp. 392-411. / English Summary. / Abbrev. // UNSA Humanitarian Educational Centre: Odessa philosophy department // Odessa, Ukraine: Autograph Publish. House. – 2008. – 416 рр. In Ukrainian)
Олександр Кирилюк. АНТИ-ПРОПП. Критика теорії В. Проппа зі структури чарівної казки та її генезису. – Одеса: Автограф/ЦГО НАН України. – 2009. – 50 с. (англ. мова).
Окремий додаток до книги (автореферат англійською): Кирилюк О.С. Світоглядні категорії граничних підстав в універсальних вимірах культури. – Монографія. – [Текст] – / Дев’яносто років Національній академії наук України. / До восьмидесятиріччя академіка Володимира Іларіоновича ШИНКАРУКА (фото з дружиною). / Автореф. книги рос. мовою сс. 357-389; резюме англ. мовою; список скорочень; бібліограф. сс. 392-411. / Олександр Сергійович Кирилюк – Одеса: Центр Гуманітарної освіти НАН України. Одеський філіал / Автограф. – 2008. - 416 с. (укр. мов.)
© О.С. Кирилюк, 2009
An original author conception of Existential Semiotics is being developed in the monograph. The methodological basis of the research is the results of studying the problem „human being - world" at Kуivan School of Philosophy. The world is understood as a projection of human senses on objective reality. But as the most meaningful human senses are existential senses, world on the whole, and its separate parts and phenomena get the indicated human measuring, foremost, in the maximum terms of the beginning and the end, life and death. Such are not only religious but also modern physical pictures of the world and history and political theories.
These ultimate senses form stable invariants of cultural discourses, in other words, they make culture universalias. These are the Categories of Ultimate Bases or – birth, life, death and immortality, and world-view codes, – alimentary, erotic, aggressive and informative, and also their combinations and formula „life – death – immortality".
They form not only the core basis of culture texts, but also serve as the analytical language of description of these texts.
Defining the invariant elements of a fairy-tale structure is the applied version of the search of culture invariants. On the basis of his own conception Me author provides a falsification of theory of V. Propp, which asserts, that the structure of a fairy-tale is formed by transformation of functions of fairy-tale characters into semantic units and that a fairy-tale is the reflection of reality, first of all - the initiation ceremony.
This falsification is due to acceptance of such base concepts, which are in conflict with it. The falsification of consequences of the theory, which has been conducted, defined falsification of all theoretical system, where these consequences had been taken from (modus tollens). Its falsification has been also proved by the fact that this work managed not only to open "reproduction effect", but also to set up and prove the empiric hypothesis of low level of universality, which describes this effect (K. Popper).
This empiric falsifying hypothesis confirms that any empiric culture text in a specific form through the historically preconditioned concepts reproduce a base universal cultural formula "death -immortality".
The universal utterances of metaphysical, philosophical worldview appear on its basis. The critical review of V. Propp's conception showed that in the reconstruction of a fairy-tale structure he stopped on the superficial, second-rate level of elements of its structure.
On the basis of this falsification in this monograph the author puts forward his own conception not only of the description, but also of explanation the source of structuring of cultural discourses. The factors, which determine the structure of culture texts, are base existential options of human being.
These options as a result reproduce such a world of signs and meanings, which are identical in any culture. Because of it the humanity is united and indivisible not only in an anthropological, but also in cultural and historical aspect. People of different cultures differ one from another not in what they do exactly, but in how they do it.
1. Philosophical and methodological basis of the Weltanschauung Categories of Ultimate Bases researching
The main factors that determine the failures of applied structuralism, the study of folklore or ethnopoetry in the search of invariants of the texts of culture are their inability to find an adequate methodological ensuring for solving its applied problems, admission of the secondary epiphenomenal structures of the texts as the subject of investigation, ignoring the philosophical and Weltanschauung-ideological approach in the structurally-typological investigations of culture. In the research there is shown a positive effectiveness of implementation of the results of scientific investigations of Kуivan School of Philosophy in the process of detection of culture invariants (or culture universalias) that focused on the problem of human relation to the world. A foundation is given to the author’s conception of interpretation of Weltanschauung (worldview) Categories of Ultimate Bases as the genuine invariants of culture (Culture Universalias). There is offered a hypothesis that one notional invariant – Categories of Ultimate Bases is at the heart of all the system of cultural texts (discourses).
World is the world of a person, a projection of human senses to an objective reality. Therefore the major meanings of the world, in spite of their apparent objectivity, are inherently anthropomorphous. Objective parameters of the world in their universal meanings fix categories of philosophy. But, being forms of thinking, they simultaneously act as total forms of worldview. In this function they serve as a concrete definition of the Categories of Ultimate Bases. This proceeds from the fact that in conceptually-philosophical models of the world the Philosophic Categories are Weltanschauung and theoretical generalizations of the Categories of Ultimate Bases.
Since the world in its intrinsic definitions depends on a person, for the profound comprehension of the world it becomes obviously necessary to solve the problem of human essence. To put it otherwise, defining the world as projection of humanly significant senses on an objective reality places the emphasis on the very person. Hence in the research there were considered the typological approximations to a person. The first of them gives the person the naturalistic and essential definitions. Usually the essence of a person is defined by the list of the most significant indications, as it is considered, or by leading the concept person under a wider concept (an animal, a being) with its further concretization. Nevertheless, if to recognize, that any of the mentioned intrinsic features of a person is not characteristic for a concrete individual, it unambiguously leads to a conclusion, that the person, who is deprived even of these essential features, actually is not a person. Therefore, the definition of the person as an active animal making the tools of labour, a moral creature, and a being that has religion or a biped animal without feathers etc. cannot be considered satisfactory as there are legless invalids, people who made a vital principle of idleness, people frankly immoral or atheists.
The second approach, axiomatic, rests on the basic vital intentions of a person. From the given data it is possible to draw the following conclusions. To axiomatic definitions of the person against which it is hardly possible to object owing to their evidence, refer the following: 1) the person is a living creature; 2) the fundamental inclination of the person as a living being is an aspiration for a survival which can be named as an instinct of self-preservation; 3) as any other living being a person possesses all basic vital functions called to provide realization of beforementioned fundamental inclination - nutritive, reproductive, aggressive and informational functions; 4) as well as everything in the world, the person is not eternal, he is a mortal being; 5) unlike other living beings the person is a unique creature in the world that understands his own individual finiteness and considers this phenomenon as a subject of a special personal Weltanschauung reflection.
The third approach which gives polar mortally-immortal definitions of the person, has the certain bases in the real facts of absence of precise borders between life and death in their ontological displays that was especially brightly showed in the widespread self-name of people as beings of the mortal nature (Engl. „man” – ‘mort’, Lаt. „homo” – ‘humus’, old-Irish „duine” – ‘mortal’).
Real means for the person to exceed his individual finiteness is socially caused going out of his own, naturally determined limits. Through that the transcendentation in the world appears as intrinsic feature of the person. Active overcoming by the person the natural limits of his own existence leads to creation of the "second", "humanized" nature, which becomes his „inorganic body”. Reification, objectification, incarnation, transformation - all these concepts express one and the same process – the process of overstepping by the person in his qualitative intrinsic definition the naturally determined limits.
Let's recede a step back and start searching for the essence of the person “from a blank sheet”, basing upon "axiomatic" postulates, that is, such which are obvious. And it is unconditionally obvious that the person is a living being. So, the certain functions directed to support existence are inherent in person, as in any other living being. Specifically human realization of these functions occurs during the process of aim relying and detail-practical transformation of the world. Therefore an unnatural, humanized world is formed. Each new generation coming to the world, finds a historically determined system of past objectified intrinsic forces of the person which through disobjectification becomes a basis for socialization of new generation.
Development of objective transformation of the world by this new generation leads to change of the world of objectives. The next generation of people passes socialization already under the influence of the changed objective senses of the cultivated world of people and so everything sinusoidally repeats at a later time.
This process which I name after Hegel and Marx through-self-life of the person is antithetic, regarding the substantial approach to his essence. The essence of the person is formed on the basis of above outlined mechanism and consequently is rather functional than substantial. Reasoning from premises it is possible to make a conclusion that the essence of the person as a social being is defined by those factors that are its own product. For this reason, the person in a certain sense is the creator of herself.
As long as the object of the research alongside with the world and the person is the culture, on the basis of the offered approach there is given a separate definition to it. It is offered to understand Culture as the form and process of specific transformation of the natural source to the human one, the main point of that is "cultivation” of human in the person, that simultaneously transforms culture to means of life-support.
Being a living creature, the person requires satisfaction of some needs to support the existence; these needs are caused by peculiarities of his corporal organization, inherited from his evolutionary ancestors. All of them to some extent can be lead to one fundamental inclination peculiar to every living being - to aspiration for self-preservation, for continuation of life. All other basic functions of an organism are subordinate to it. This human aspiration (inclination), being socialized, gets essentially different, than in the animal kingdom, forms of realization.
Transformed in culture and presented at different levels of world attitude, the basic functions and fundamental aim at life supporting form a part of worldview consciousness (as the forms of world attitude) and act as its steady components, in a certain sense - constants. Worldview as an ideal constituent of world attitude and the form of the person’s self-knowing includes these constants, and within their limits they become “Universalias of culture”.
The person always vitally comprehended and sharply experienced the finiteness, frailty. In the myths, religion, folklore, literature, philosophy and other forms of spiritual perception of reality the Weltanschauung universalias corresponding to the given type of public consciousness are recreated, among them the categories of ultimate bases, the existence of the person in the world are central, namely - birth, life, death and immortality. Consequently the attitude of the person to the world is first of all the attitude of a finite being (that declines to his own completion).
Because of stated, in the work there is elaborated a language of description and the analysis of culture Universalias, as well as regulations specifying it. Semantic and lexical units of this language are the categories of ultimate bases, the codes of the worldview and the basic world outlook formula.
By Categories of Ultimate Bases (CUB) I understand the constitutive, structural components of worldview connected with socialization and improvement of fundamental bases of existence of the person in the world in context of his finitary temporality. CUB in their worldview aspect are not only objective forms of existence of the person in the world (ontology of CUB), but also means of understanding of this phenomenon (worldview and philosophical aspect of CUB).
Reasoning from the use of the term “categories of ultimate bases” which is available in the literature one can draw the following conclusion. If categories of philosophy are the general forms of activity, and activity, in some authors’ opinion (V. Zviglyanich, M. Parniuk), is the ultimate basis of human existence in the world, it becomes clear that these categories simultaneously act as the general elements of the ultimate bases of existence of the person in the world.
If we accept the fact, that categories are a certain generalization of activity, then the following step will consist in recognition of that this activity occurs with the purpose of realization of the basic cultural-universal formula of support and continuation of life. The Categories, consequently, represent some invariant moments not only of activity as a pure process, but also of the activity that consists of the person’s aspiration for consolidation of the existence, supporting of life and overcoming of his own finiteness.
As long as the person achieves the realization of the basic world outlook formula by means of functions that are peculiar to all living beings but are transformed in culture such as the nutritive and reproductive functions, the function of aggression and defence, and the function of transfer of experience, then, according to the above-listed functions that form a part of culture, they can be defined as alimentary, erotic, aggressive and informative codes of worldview.
The given language is defined more exactly by the following theses. Attitudes of the person to the world represent a multivariate phenomenon, therefore the processes of transformation of natural displays of life to specifically human existence in the world are realized in different forms, depending on a level of the relation “the person - the world”. In my opinion, the main of them are the objectively-practical, ritually-ceremonial, practically-spiritual and spiritually-theoretical levels of world attitude.
Along with that, at all these levels one can see the basic vital impulse transformed to cultural forms which is expressed in the leitmotif of culture, in the basic cultural-world outlook formula „Generation and consolidation of life, the denying of death, aspiration for immortality”. In the habitués changed in limits of culture these categories act as the genitive, vital, mortal and immortal categories of ultimate bases.
A complex interaction (mixing or contamination) is possible both between the CUB and the codes. They also can get strong and weak forms of representation of type: death > disappearance> exile > removal> leaving (the mortal CUB); birth > appearance > arrival > approach (the genitive CUB); defeat > blow > a swear word (an aggressive code in contamination in the latter case with an informational code); love > a love inclination > friendship > sympathy (an erotic code), etc.
These natural inclinations undergo the certain changes in the system of culture. Simultaneously to cultivation, growing of the natural source in culture its transformation (reorganization) also takes place, that can be accompanied by the leading of natural instincts to the certain course, channel (canalize). They can be also suppressed and forbidden (tabooed).
The world relations of the person are carried out in categorically ultimate forms. Therefore the available "aspects" of consideration of categories, such as ontological, logical, epistemological, functional, socio-historical and Weltanschauung-ideological (where the matter concerns their functioning in different forms of outlook) should be enlarged also by universally-cultural aspect. In fact along with all mentioned above, categories of philosophy have also such contents, and, accordingly, such function that are connected with characterization of the world on the basis of categories of ultimate bases extremely generalized in a philosophical reflection.
Taking that into account philosophical categories appear also as a way of understanding by the person of his life at such level of generalization when antithetic categories, for instance, existence and nothing, finite and infinite, acceptance and denying, etc. appear as the form of a concrete definition of a global Weltanschauung (World-outlook) antithesis of life and death.
As long as categories of philosophy appear as total forms of world attitude in its vitally significant parameters, that is, as philosophical-reflective expression of CUB, then all functions and features belonging to them are also inherent in the world outlook categories of ultimate bases. CUB in this case also represent universal, categorical definitions of the world, the person and his attitude to it during the realization of concrete historical types of world attitude in its cultural displays.
The universally-cultural aspect of philosophical categories reveals itself when they become means of understanding of vitally meaningful sides of life of the person. In such sense the categories of philosophy as generalization of CUB function in structure of forms of worldview where extremely generalized features of human existence, as that of a finite being, are projected on the world. On these categorical antitheses that go back to the antithesis of life and death, the worldview pictures (including religious views, cosmological and historical theories) are reconstituted, and the key concepts are those of the beginning and the end.
2. Categories of Ultimate Bases as Universalias of Culture
This part of the work deals with consideration of the transformation of natural basic functions during the socio-cultural formation of the person, an original interpretation is given to morphology of culture from the standpoint of universally-cultural approach. An illustration is given to the difference between “concepts” and “denotations” in texts of culture i.e. distinguishing between invariant components of cultural texts and their conceptual equivalents in the descriptive languages of the texts. On the basis of critical examination of different approaches to culture universalias Me author shows methodological and heuristic advantages of the concept of Categories of ultimate bases as culture universalias.
Realization of the selected strategy of the research and application of language of the description in the analysis of transformation of natural basic functions during the socio-cultural progress of mankind within the limits of creation of artificial means of their realization, reproduction in ceremonies and rituals, understanding at a level of spiritually-practical and theoretical consciousness has allowed to determine judgements, how the alimentary, erotic, aggressive and informative functions are cultivated, tabooed, canalized and in such form are represented as invariants of the structure of cultural texts.
For instance, the entire system of reception and transfer of acquired knowledge in scientific and educational establishments originates from "cultivation" of the informative function, the majority of societies used to taboo an asocial, aggressive behaviour and to canalize not normative forms of realization of erotic function though prostitution can be cultivated in the form of temple prostitution. The last function can also get the cultivated display in sexual elements, and not only in wedding ceremonies, but also funeral and calendar ones. There are religions where sexual function gets attributes of a cult, and it is shown not only in the East, but in Christianity (nunnery as a brides of Christ).
On the whole, it is a question of radical transformation of natural inclinations to especially human forms of behaviour, and by no means positive, when the person, always acting either worse, or better, as compared with an animal, but never being equal to it, is capable both of disgustingly low behaviour, and of unprecedented rises of the spirit.
Basic functions in process of their development have got an institutionalized form, having formed the certain kinds of cultural forms. In other words, socialized functions, becoming institutes, "stand stock-still" in the certain forms.
At a level of physical existence of the person the formation of corporal culture takes place. The ability to render a qualified medical assistance also refers to cultural attributes of one or another society, that allows to speak about culture of health. In other words, maintenance of normal vital functions of the body with the help of special means, methods and substances, and also by means of sanitary arrangements leads to formation of medical culture. The physical training is directed towards an artificial development of natural opportunities of body, that in its extreme way becomes a kind of sports culture, bodybuilding and a cult of body in a modern mass culture.
At the objectively-practical level the alimentary function in its wide sense in the process of its humanization has generated a powerful layer of the cultivated objectivity which is united by the general name of material culture. Artificial transformation of nature generates specific forms of a technical culture.
Therefore scientists use the terms agriculture, speak about hunting, fishing, craft, industrial and other cultures. The certain types of cultures undergo even more detailed classification. For instance, if the matter concerns pottery then by separate characteristics of pottery it is easy to identify some old cultures in general.
Objectively-practical transformation of the nature generates specific forms of functionally subordinated to each other relations between people, or industrial culture which at a level of direct labour operations finds display in manufacturing culture or a standard of work. These types of culture provide not only technological equipment of work (corresponding to a level of development of productive capacity) and skilfulness of workers, but also a high level of technical and organizational supplying of this process. Here the matter concerns technological and technical and organizational culture. But one can hardly imagine modern manufacture without an appropriate financial and economic supply, management and organizing.
Therefore there appear such spheres of cultural regulation of human activity that are covered by the concept of economic and administrative culture, the cultures of management in general. Obligatory features of a modern expert are also a high standard of business, business etiquette, etc.
In the process of transformation of the nature the person, satisfying his needs for nutrients, energy and conditions of life in general, makes the object of his activity, the nature, be a subject of special cultural regulation that leads to the formation of ecological culture or culture of nature management, including an indicative in meaning "rе-cultivation" of the activity objects.
Development of basic function of continuation of clan at a level of objective-practical world relation generates a system of cultural types which arise on the basis of cognate relations and relations in family as in a social institute. This universal cultural phenomenon corresponds with culture of family relations. Human communities which originate owing to realization of two mentioned functions of the person, also give separate cultural forms.
According to this it is possible to speak about culture of international relations, and in a wider sense, paying attention to authoritative functions of the state, about political culture. Normative cultural regulation of property, authoritative, industrial, cognate and other relations leads to formation of legal culture.
The ritually-ceremonial level transforms the vital functions of the person to one cultural type, the contents of which makes a subject of studying for special cultural schools. As any living being has no rituals and ceremonies, it is possible to speak about them as a specific human way of development of the world within the limits of special, ritually-ceremonial culture. Briefly speaking, in ceremonies of sacrifice we see realization of contaminative aggressive and alimentary functions, in the rituals accompanying an establishment of conjugal relations – of the reproductive function etc.
The practically-spiritual level causes the occurrence of such cultural forms which are united in a class of spiritual culture in general. To its main types we refer myth, religion, folklore, art, literature and morality. This level generates the objective world of consciousness of the person which is often identified with culture in general. Therefore one of forms of the spiritually-practical relation of the person to the world, religion, is understood first of all as a cult.
The spiritually-theoretical level is also covered by the general concept of spiritual culture, but unlike the previous type of spiritual understanding of the world, here it is mainly deprived of its emotionally-sensual colouring. Here the "pure" cognitive process is subjected to cultivation; the culture of scientific research is formed.
Alongside of it the system of specially created means of transfer of socially meaningful information to the new generations is formed. Within the limits of culture of school and university education, a wider system of means and methods of transfer of information to children and adults with their simultaneous education - pedagogical culture - got its development.
The humankind paid not less attention to creation of cultural means of preservation of the information, cultivating writing, publishing, keeping a source of the information (libraries, museums, archives, etc.). Owing to this, the culture of writing qualitatively differs from cultures of illiterate people. Specific means of distribution, reception and transfer of information in language culture and culture of thinking are closely connected with these kinds of cultural forms.
There is no doubt that the mentioned cultural forms do not exhaust all the richness of culture. However, it has not been taken for the purpose here to give the full nomenclature of cultural types.
It was important to outline only the general principle of understanding of cultural formations as derivatives of their general source - existence of the person in the world, directed towards creation of artificial, cultivated conditions for "organization" of a human life as a whole.
Thus, on the basis of the universal-cultural approach to the morphology of culture in the work there was shown, how all variety of cultural forms can be led to the uniform basis when people differ one from another not by what they do in cultural sphere, but by how they do it. Therefore, it enables to establish not only anthropological, but also cultural unity of humankind.
That is, cultural unity of mankind is determined by identity of functional assortment of cultural and creative activity of the person as a patrimonial being, and divergence between cultures arises owing to involving different systems of objectivation into the realization of these functions.
These moments should be considered when defining the CUB-structure of culture texts.
Understanding of the importance of a problem of finding invariants of culture has made the search for culture universalias one of leading themes of modern philosophic-cultural researches. In the wide sense this concept has a widespread application though in the majority of works the approach to them has especially descriptive and declarative character which is shown in simple ascertaining that universalias are present in culture or in ascription to culture universalias a wide range of phenomena, in consequence of that these works are unproductive for my research.
Therefore, it is necessary to accept that the development of the problem of culture universalias cannot be considered satisfactory.
Categories of ultimate bases, on the one hand, are the subject of investigation and on the other - they exist as means of knowledge of the required invariants of cultural texts.
Consequently, we offer the methodological principle, which suggests to distinguish universal invariant constituents of the textual structures in the text itself („denotate”), and in notions („concepts”) by means of which these invariants are fixed and comprehended.
When the researchers (Heleasar Meletinsky and others) specify, that the fairy tale is structured within the limits of a destructive code, and Algirdas Greimas speaks about a gastronomic code of culture it is clear, that in the „languages of the description” they implicitly used such „concepts” which correspond to aggressive and alimentary world outlook codes.
It is necessary to distinguish also the forms of representation of the ultimate bases of human existence in the world at different levels of world relation and corresponding sciences with the specific conceptual apparatus, which have as the subject of investigation this concrete level.
For example, ontology of death is studied by thanatological branch of medicine and the ritually-ceremonial level of its representation in funeral ceremonialism – by ethnography. Accordingly, the „conceptual” description of one and the same boundary human situation in these branches of knowledge will be different.
In the work it is also proved, that existing substantial approaches to culture universalias eventually originate from the categories of ultimate bases and worldview codes.
And so, my viewpoint, when universalias of cultures are understood as categories of ultimate bases and codes, has its obvious essential advantages as it reveals the deep invariant elements of structure of culture texts, consequently all available points of view on cultural universalias seem only as a particular, specifically conceptually issued variant of my approach.
So, in the approach offered by Theodore Oyzerman, it is easy to see a wider CUB-structure. Such distinguished by him universalia of culture as labour is the basic form of supporting existence with the purpose of reception of substance and energy from an outer world (the alimentary code in its wide meaning).
The reverse influence of nature changed in the course of practice upon the person and conditions of his life has determined the origin of an ecological problematic, which is also considered by this author as a cultural universalia.
Reproductive function in its emotional-evaluative variant is presented by this researcher in universalias of matrimonial relations and respect for motherhood. Hospitality and peaceful co-existence of people as universalias of culture (according to Theodore Oyzerman) can be led under a wider CUB-base, namely – under an aggressive code in its tabooed manifestation.
At the same time the universalias „boldness and courage” as well as „war" give us the cultivated aggressive code. In the certain degree the same code in the same expression is visible in the first part of Oyzerman universalia „self-control in the face of death”. Courage here has obvious indications of force, strength of mind, and it is nothing else but one of conceptual expressions of aggressive code. At the same time, courage is directed against death, that is against denying of life.
Therefore, in this case on the basis of the given universalia one can notice also an intentially presented immortal category. Similar result in detection of the deep CUB-contents has been received during the analysis of other works on this theme (Bronislav Malinovsky, George Murdock, John Passmor, etc.).
3. Investigation of profound invariant of the structure of a fairy tale as the applied version of search for universalias in texts of culture
The chapter begins with consideration of conceptualization of structurally-formal studying of a fairy tale by Roman Volkov. Thus I regarded the searches for the inner invariant of the structure of a fairy tale as the applied version of revealing universalias in texts of culture. Then the approach to structure of a fairy tale of Vladimir Propp is examined. In the chapter CUB-aspects of the reconstruction of „historical roots of a magic fairy tale” by V. Propp is stated also.
The analysis of the work of Roman Volkov (Волков Р. М. Сказка. Разыскания по сюжетосложению народной сказки. – Одесса: Гос. изд-во Украины, 1924) has shown, that he possesses a priority in undertaking of structurally-formal studying of a fairy tale. This is true because it was he who carried out for the first time the classification of a separate type of fairy tales (where the characters are unjustly expelled) and through formalization proved that in each of its versions there is present a constant invariant.
At the same time, he implicitly used categories of ultimate bases and codes as the language of the description (the formalized elements of fairy tale structure). Categories of ultimate bases and codes made also an inner invariant of fairy tales contents, which underwent formalization.
For instance, the aggressive world outlook code is at the heart of the type of the selected for the analysis fairy tales about guiltlessly persecuted. Persecution as the hostile aggressive act provides presence of the one who persecutes, and the one who is persecuted. At the same time persecution as the dynamic motive plays the role of the leading moment of development of all narration. In the given type of fairy tales he actualizes the basic formula „life - death (threat of a life) – immortality (removal of the threat)”.
The main feature of Vladimir Propp approach consisted in recognition as elements of structure of a fairy tale of those semantic units which were formed on the basis of functions of the characters. There can be many characters, but the number of functions is finite. In each fairy tale it is possible to distinguish these identical functions.
Therefore, externally different fairy tales as a matter of fact, according to V. Propp, are identical. Such point of view has got all attributes of a research paradigm, having set for the long years the general direction of research of not only the fairy tale invariants, but also of other narrative texts. Simultaneously the real fairy tale structure nevertheless was showed to some extent in the language of description of a fairy tale offered by him.
Later this fact was objectively examined in my work, as a result we discovered that for the conceptual forms of V.Propp’s “language of description” of the fairy tale structure there stand CUB and corresponding codes.
The same result has been received at the analysis of works on the structure of a fairy tale by the followers of V. Propp within the limits of his paradigmatic functional approach.
The solution by V. Propp of his own research problems was embodied in four postulates:
1) the functions of characters are the constant elements of a fairy tale; 2) a number of the functions of a magic fairy tale is limited; 3) the sequence of functions is always invariable; 4) all magic fairy tales are of the same type according to the structure. It has enabled to draw a conclusion, that morphologically all fairy tales can be originated from one fairy tale on abduction of tsarevnas (princesses) by the Dragon and their rescue by the hero (Аф131).
The analysis of the „ language of the description” (of functions of characters both in their formal record, and in substantial displays), offered by V. Propp, shows, that these functions have a precise universally-cultural distinctness. In the "basic" fairy tale the matter actually concerns how, feeling a fatal threat, the heroine or heroines eventually are rescued.
That is, an authentic invariant of this fairy tale (according to V. Propp, all the others are reduced to it), is one of the versions of the basic world outlook formula „life - threat of life – rescue”. On the basis of the material stated by V. Propp there is shown a universally-cultural isomorphism of a fairy tale and “reality”. At the same time here it has been paid attention to problematic character of explanations of genesis and transformation of texts as representations of "reality".
For intensification of my position I have brought examples of criticism of this postulate of V. Propp "from within", from the point of view of specialists in folklore and narratologists. They warned against carrying out of erroneous unequivocal correspondence between a fairy tale and ceremonies, and also a widely understood "reality" (Albert Bajburin, Alexander Reshetov, Peter Bogatyryov especially – Богатырев П. Г. Магические действия, обряды и верования Закарпатья / Богатырев П. Г. Вопросы теории народного искусства. – М., 1971; reissue of: Actes magiques rites et croyances en Russie Subcarpathique. – Pr., 1929).
Addressing to „historical roots” of fairy tale "morphology", V. Propp began to understand a fairy tale as a certain secondary, derivative structure, as reflection of another, out-fabulous "reality". He regarded it first of all as the cycle of initiation (a ceremony of ordaining) and, in less degree, as a cycle of idea of death.
I have critically reviewed the works of followers of V. Propp who aimed "to improve" his conception (Vadim Baevsky, Neonila Krinichnaya, Natalia Hobzej, Nikolay Kisljakov, Rachel Lipets, and others) and have come to conclusion, that many of them had the same methodological difficulties, as V. Propp. They were connected first of all with an establishment of a real historical and genetic correlation of a ceremony, an epos or a fairy tale with "reality", and also with verification of both the procedures of reconstruction, and the achieved results.
Especially vulnerable for criticism there were conclusions of Heleasar Meletinsky (Мелетинский Е. М. Герой волшебной сказки: происхождение образа. – М., 1958) who tried to find the original sources of an image of a character of a magic fairy tale in “the social reality”. He considered them as a usual right (common law) of “minorat” when all parental property passed to the younger son.
But, contradicting to himself, H. Meletinsky considered also in an absolutely non-corresponding to this right oppression of the younger brother by the elder brothers the sources of an image of the poor character. If the “minorat” underlies the fairy tales where there appears a deprived character, then in particular the elder brothers who were disinherited of any property, should appear as destitute characters.
In the book it has been found out, that the deep underlying causes of structure of a fairy tale are CUB and codes in their formula sheaf. As consequence of this during the research there has emerged a problem whether the CUB-structure of a fairy tale is an adequate representation of a universal-cultural structure of "reality" of a ceremony, or, probably, both the fairy tale and the ceremony have such structures independently from each other?
And if it will be ascertained, that secondariness of structure of a fairy tale relatively to the structure of the reality is doubtful, there arises one more problem – what is exactly defined by the formation of the fairy tale structure (or form as the way of organization of its contents)? For this reason, there was the necessity for critical viewing of V. Propp’s paradigm from viewpoint and on the basis of philosophic and worldview approach. On its basis there opens the prospect of making a correct methodological base of all theoretical generalizations of applied folklore and ethnographic researches.
Only in that case we shall receive an adequate knowledge of a real structure of the texts of culture and find out the reasons of such structurization of them. In other words, there opens the opportunity to change the descriptive method of research to an explanatory one.
However, to make the new concept of invariants of the structure of culture texts productively working, it is necessary to show mistakes and weaknesses of existing approaches. Preliminary step in this direction became revealing of internal contradictions and discrepancy in the concept of V. Propp that has served as the precondition of its falsification (according to Charles Popper's theory).
4. An explication of internal contradictions of the theory of V. Propp as a precondition of its falsification
The chapter begins with a critical verification of the concept of structurally functional morphology of a fairy tale according to V. Propp. It is carried out by revealing problematical character of formation of semantic units of a fairy tale on the basis of functions of actants. It is shown also, that the way out of the impasse of applied structuralism within the confines of an antithesis "element-structure" is possible based on a wide philosophic and world outlook approach only.
Questions which arise here first of all, consist in that, how much successfully V. Propp was able to reconstruct its real structure in formal language of the description of a fairy tale. One of disadvantages of his formalization is ignoring of the circumstance, that the fairy tale, except of actions of its characters includes in the structure their states, non-realized desires, aspirations, etc., and also various consequences of these actions, and this just has not fallen under procedures of formalization.
Besides, there remain some non-examined processes and phenomena which can depend on functions of the characters, and can remain only as conditions of their activity.
In spite of an over-formalized language of the description, V. Propp simply ignores in "inconvenient" cases some functions of some characters.
So, in case of when such character as the father, has sexual interest to his daughter (shocking though a widespread function in fairy tales), we should have a semantic unit as „daughterfucker”. Also there were not formalized such characters who during a fabulous narration considerably change their functions. That leads to their declaration as "mysterious" and causes those additional, but unpersuasive explanations that are offered by V. Propp.
But when trying to add the opposite definitions to them, it makes them semantically different units of a fairy tale (a "grantor" acts simultaneously as a "wrecker") that "breaks" the idea of V. Propp from within. To other essential imperfections of V. Propp’s concept we should add also leaving without explanation of incomplete application of a theoretical part of his concept in his own works. Actually, from all of the more than three tens functions distinguished by V. Propp only a little of them was entered into the basic scheme (б1е1А1В4С↑П4Л5↑) of the main fairy tale № 131 (from collected stories by A. Afanas’ev).
Thus, it is necessary to ascertain, that the idea offered by V. Propp that a fairy tale invariant consists of permanent functions which number is invariable, and the sequence is constant, gives essential failures, because, firstly, quite not all the functions of actants of a fairy tale form those steady semantic units which allegedly are constant elements of a fairy tale structure.
Secondly, he has not solved the problem not only of correlation of the opposite functions inherent in one actant during the change in time of a pole of its action, but also could not formalize these features of a fairy tale, owing to that an allegedly steady semantic unit becomes blurred (according to V. Propp, this semantic unity is an atomic basic fairy tale element). All this testifies to an internal inconsistency of the theory of V. Propp, establishment of this fact is an important step to revealing of its falsity (falsification).
The heart of the problem "a structure – an element", formulated with reference to studying of a fairy tale, looks like a question, whether the structure (a plot or motive) sets the functions of elements (characters), or, on the contrary, the functions of characters build a plot? If functions of actants are constant, then exactly these characters, being involved in a fabulous narration „at a right time and in the right place”, will determine its structure. But if these actants are really rigidly defined in their functions, then it is difficult to imagine a fairy tale where the Little Red Riding Hood catches the Wolf in the forest of and eats him up.
At the same time, there are many fabulous and folklore actants which functions are not definitely set. Thus, say, the Wood-goblin can frighten people, steal children and so on, but he also helps to pasture the cattle, kindly lulls the child forgotten by a mother. What structure then will be set to a fairy tale by this ambivalent character?
One of the ways of decision of the denoted problem "structure-element" consists in admission that, according to the principle “the structure determines the function of elements”, not the actant builds the structure, but the structure, in cases when the actant has taken the certain place in it, "compulsorily" sets corresponding functions to an actant.
At first sight, it seems so. Nevertheless, the matter is that the basic invariant fairy tale structure does not exist in pure form, just as it is. Similarly, to an archetype, it demonstrates itself only through an objective material, but is not reduced to it.
In turn, a part of a concrete material of a fairy tale, in particular, some objectively-figurative embodiments of actants, owing to their steady fixing at the certain basic elements of fairy tale structure or at its typical episodes, become similar to clichés. Owing to this circumstance, the given embodiments of typical functions in the certain characters show resistance to their artificial inclusion in such cells of structure where the not inherent functions will be imposed to them. Nevertheless if they are still forced "to enter" the "place" in the structure not inherent in them, determined by a functional role alien to them, then this character starts to look as something distorted or mockly-ridiculous.
It is exactly those cases when the stepmother will love the stepdaughter more, than her own daughter or when the peaceful Wolf will suffer from the Little Red Riding Hood, and Tsarevitch will fall in love with the She-Dragon.
It is interesting, that similar experimentation with functions of fabulous characters was carried out by a famous Italian children's storyteller J. Rodari who in „topsy-turvy fairy tales” suggested sating an invariant “bare scheme” of fairy tales with the characters performing functions, opposite to habitual ones. However, the „bare” scheme therefore is considered „bare”, because it does not exist just as it is, outside of its concrete personifications. Characters through their actions should "open" this "scheme" (structure). But then on this basis it is possible to draw an opposite conclusion that it is exactly "structure" that sets meanings (functions) to the "elements", rather than conversely. What is the true answer?
Here we have approached to the main point of the problem. It consists in what represents and by what is determined the „bare scheme” mentioned above, which retains in all possible though extravagant embodiments. It is necessary to accept, that only the account of that circumstance, that a deeper universal-cultural worldview context acts as an invariant basis of fairy tales, where all concretely-structural and substantial moments are strung on idea of a survival through struggle against death, allows breaking off a vicious circle which arises here.
Then in the work there is given explication to negative singular consequences of the theory of V. Propp about an origin of structure of a fairy tale from a ceremony. It is carried out through demonstration of discrepancy between a key postulate of the concept of V. Propp – „the structure of a fairy tale is determined by the structure of an (initial) ceremony” and the contents of his research. There is also used a method of „back (reversal) reconstruction” by means of transformation of the relation „a ceremony – a fairy tale” to „a fairy tale – a ceremony”, that leads to paradoxes and obviously absurd hypothetical situations.
Thus, the motive “chopped and poisoned” is explained by V. Propp by means of the contents of an initial ceremony. In the course of time a real murder, which is nonsense in itself, as an initiant should pass a ceremony of initiation, instead of fall a victim in sacrifice, was replaced, according to V. Propp by cutting off a finger. But then all masculine population of archaic communities should be entirely adactylous, and it is not so.
Similar discrepancies arise in cases of explanation of ritual defloration of women who have already given birth and in other similar absurd statements which testify that such illogical result of research cannot be considered satisfactory in any way.
Some other weaknesses are inherent in explanations by V. Propp concerning the sources of fairy tale structure, that are able to testify their incorrectness. Thus, he, in spite of a many times declared position that the structure of a fairy tale is determined by the initial, and also, partially, by other ceremonies, was never able to stay in limits of this key postulate.
Actually he pass to another level of "reality" connected not only with initial, but also funeral, wedding and calendar ceremonial and with beliefs which accompany them, including the developed forms of myth and religion, with cult of ancestors and totemistic cults. When explaining the origin of motives and episodes of a fairy tale he uses separate details of other ceremonies, in particular, sacrifices and becoming related, adding to them national believes, and even imaginations, dreams and, an absolutely extreme case, the ability of people to forget. He also bases on data about customs, a common law and life, referring to such social phenomena, as transition from polygamy to monogamy, struggle for authority, on industrial activity.
Thus, in V. Propp’s works there are revealed such non-agreements which allow to speak about "abnegation" of his own concept. The reason of this is, obviously, in incorrectness of his basic postulate, that’s why V. Propp, contrary to his insistent declaration, is compelled to admit involuntarily the fact, that the structure of a fairy tale by no means corresponds to the structure of an initial ceremony and to ceremonial realities in general. It is the evidence of an obvious internal inconsistency of his paradigmatic concept. Finally, the results got by V. Propp are regarded as arguments in favour of ascertaining of his conceptual failure.
Taking into account an obvious discrepancy of the structure of a fairy tale reconstructed by V. Propp and an unsatisfactory explanation of its “historical roots” we put forward a deductive hypothesis of a low level of universality of an universal-cultural structure of fairy tales and we find its empiric confirmation using a fairy tale material from examples of Antti Aarne, Steve Thompson, Roman Volkov, Vladimir Propp etc.
5. Falsification of the theory of V. Propp by means of increasing a level of universality of a deductive hypothesis about a universal-cultural structure of culture texts
In this chapter the purpose of research, which is defined in the name of the book, is realized by means of enlargement of empirical base of the put forward hypothesis with attraction of a wide file of texts of culture. First of all it is ascertained here, that all fairy tale material can be easily analyzed using such procedure when a universal-cultural contents is revealed in it. On this basis, it is offered to consider, that basic statements of V. Propp concerning the structure of a fairy tale text are incorrect as a matter of fact. Actually, the fairy tale has in its basis that deep invariant which is recreated from a combination of categories of ultimate bases and world outlook codes. But earlier this statement referred only to a fairy tale and consequently a hypothesis concerning the CUB-structure of the texts the culture had a low level of universality.
My further step was enlargement of the research field by means of distribution of the offered hypothesis on other texts of culture, so that on the basis of an objective (empirical) material of ceremonies, mythology, religion and literary and art consciousness to show their is universal-cultural structuredness.
Thus, the level of universality of the mentioned hypothesis has increased, owing to that it became possible to falsify the theory of V. Propp not only at a level of consequences or singular statements, but also at a level of its basic theses.
And really, the reference to a ceremonial material has shown, that both calendar ceremonies, and ceremonies of life cycle have a full CUB-structuredness in all known codes, in spite of what real was semeiotic in them. In other words, New Year's holidays, Pancake week (Carnival), Midsummer Night, ceremonies of a birth, wedding and funeral ceremonies have in their basis a triad „life – death – revival”.
In New Year's ceremonies (originally – spring ceremonies) it is shown, in particular, in their typological identity with funeral repast (twelve dishes, boiled rice with raising and honey, prohibition to sleep, a table-cloth which is prepared for funeral, candles, etc.) and also arrival of the died ancestors (carols with weird attributes) which should help the forces of life in the coming year.
In spring ceremonies it is embodied in a duel of forces of death and forces of life (fisticuffs), in trains-catafalques which bury winter, in swinging-copulations of youth on the hills.
In summer ceremonies the matter concerns dying and revival of a deity (Yarylo, Chіurylo, Mara, Marena, Madder), a sexual freedom of participants of a ceremony is allowed, and they, being joined in pairs, render a divine married couple of Adonis and Aphrodite (at us – Ivan and Mary) with a derived institute of nepotism with the allowed in its limits sexual relations between godfather and godmother, canalized later on Midsummer Day, and nepotism on graves and during christening.
The perinatal ceremonies, called to remove a threat of death from the newborn child, get paradoxical features of courting death upon the child and its symbolical burial in limits of dialectic understanding of dying as a guarantee of revival. A well-known lullaby „Do not sleep on the edge...” has such continuation „Lullaby, lullaby, at once if you die, tomorrow mother’ll have a kissel and pancakes, this is your funeral repast … ”. In such a way the death was removed from a baby allocated: it will come, and there is already nobody to take away.
The ceremony of a social birth (initiation) in general has as semantic centre the idea of dying of an adolescent in the old status and revival in a new, adult status, through imitation of staying in „the world beyond”.
In wedding ceremonialism the towel, stepping over of which symbolizes passing the Styx, the „weirdness” of newly-weds (a prohibition of touching them and their movement as the dead, against the sun), identifications of getting married with dying (crying-lamentation), a veil of the bride as a muslin which covers the face of the deceased, etc. all these factors clearly indicate a mortally-immortal basis of all this ceremony.
And again, as well as in a New Year's holiday, there appear the died ancestors as only from their sanction the birth of a new member of a clan-tribe was allowed. At first it was shown in the form of a cult, when the bride copulated with a totem animal (a goat, a horse, a bull) in a "natural" way.
Then the right of superiority directly from a totem animal, passed to its personification, to the chieftain-priest. As a result, the first man of the bride at marriage night, often in presence of relatives, her mother and bridegroom, was not the bridegroom, but friends to the bridegroom, respected people of settlement and, according to absolutely recent ethnographic data on the Odessa area (1920th), the groomsman-boyar.
Residual echoes of this element of a wedding ceremony in a fairy tale is cohabitation of Mary and the Bear, and in modern weddings – a ritual seating of the newly-weds on the bear, sheep or bull skins, or, in a degenerated variant, on a fur coat or simply on a pillow.
To the same remnants concerns steady, but already not clear euphemism of conjugal infidelity - "to cuckold" (once the chieftain-totem, having copulated in public with the bride, gave his cap decorated with horns, to the bridegroom, handing him in such a way the force of ancestors). Thereby, the died ancestors symbolically generated a new life.
The main point of funeral ceremonialism is reduced, eventually, to marking this event as a system of actions which will provide an indispensable revival of the deceased, the display of that is an embryonic, crooked position of a died man in a hole-bosom or preservation of ashes in a cremation urn, in a vessel-womb.
To this range of reproduction of the basic formula „life – death – revival” refer also the erotic games of Europeans near the deceased, traditional strewing him with grain-seed (by the ancient Egyptians and modern Ukrainians) which should symbolically germinate, an Indo-Iranian ceremony of „dikshi”, reproduced already in a tomb for those who could not lead it during lifetime because of expensiveness, in the form of sexual poses a posteriori (dogstile) of man and woman, (imitation of self-conception of the dead with the purpose of reincarnation), copulation of the Kyїv combatants near a funeral fire with the widow of Duke „instead of the husband”, a ceremonial reconstruction in 19 century by Mordvinians of wedding during a funeral (including the ritual defloration of a died virgin by the Jews of Volhynia so that the devil could not copulate with her and she would not given birth to a dangerous monster) etc.
Consideration of a myth from this point of view of the universal-cultural approach has shown that categories of ultimate bases and world outlook codes literally penetrate through their contents. Thus, in mythological figures of fauna – a bull and a cow, a horse, a goat, a bear, a lion, a tiger, birds, fishes and insects, etc. the genitive, vitality and mortality, and also certain codes make their semantic background. For example, the pigeon was understood as allegory of a soul of the dead (immortality).
References to vegetative symbols of mythological consciousness shows, that their dependence on seasonal cycles makes them successful analogue of embodiment of a basic triad „life – death – revival”. The last CUB is shown here because a drink of immortality was made exactly of plants.
If to speak about abstract mythological symbols, then the mythological thinking was developed enough to form in its structure the abstract symbols, having risen above an individual-sensual character of objective images. One of the most widespread world abstract symbols was a circle which was often concretized in illustrative images of the snake turned into a ring and others circular things.
The circle symbolized the coincidence of the beginning and the end, of birth and death (genitive and mortality) and, eventually, eternity (immortality). The erotic code in a circle appeared in its understanding as female beginning and when in its center there was a throne settled down, a trunk, columnar or world mountain – in its unification with male beginning.
The analysis of typological myths, mythological symbols and figures has shown, that in astral, solar and lunar myths there is precisely presented a genitive universalia, connected, in particular, with the description of occurrence of the Sun and others celestial bodies.
Rather a widespread motive within the limits of erotically coded genitive in the given type of myths was the motive of a heavenly marriage of the Sun and the Moon and generation of children-stars from this pair. But here we also see aggressively-mortal motives shown in constant struggle between spouses.
The basic world outlook formula „life – death – immortality” was realized in the given myths in stories about lunar phase cycles as its birth, dying and revival. Alimentary coding of the formula is visible in fairy tales about the diminution of the Moon as a result of its eating up by a witch or a dog.
Studying of concrete national mythological systems, in particular, Ukrainian one, has shown, that all CUB and codes were present in it. In the "lowest" mythology the Mermaids (drowned women) are young, beautiful girls who attract young men, and then lead them up to death by means of a wearisome sexual act though sometimes marry them and even have children from them.
In a pantheon of "high" mythology gods, for example, Svarog, personified the current of time and its triadic structuredness that was embodied in the motive of a star which lives, dies and revives (movement of the Sun).
Consideration of the epic writings (Hillyads, Odysseys and Тhe Story about Igor’s Regiment) has shown also their monosemantic CUB-structure with that only difference when the basic universal formula „life – death – immortality” in myths of an agrarian cycle was represented in a narration about a deity which dies and revives, and in myths of adventurous type - in a story about never-ending dangerous trials of the main character with his indispensable rescue from death.
In religious consciousness, in particular, Christianity, the display of CUB and codes was showed in a wide set of concepts, in the basis of which there is the same world outlook base. These codes are most essentially represented in laconic Christian definitions of God, such, as „ I am bread” (an alimentary code), „ I am love” (an erotic code), „ I am word” (an informative code). An aggressive code in the concentrated form is represented in understanding of God as the victorious Force that is not dependent on the death, though usual concepts also have here the most universal-world outlook significance (wine, pupils, vine, fornication, virginity, etc.).
In the architectonics of the Bible the universal basic formula is displayed at least three times:
A. 1) Birth (creation of the world and people); 2) life of people in Paradise; 3) the Fall, exile from Paradise and transformation of people into mortal beings; 4) sinful life of people; 5) punishment by flood; 4) rescue (survival) of a part of mankind.
B. 1) Birth (Christmas) of Jesus Christ; 2) Jesus Christ's terrestrial life; 3) the death of the Saviour on the Cross; 4) Jesus Christ's Resurrection as the victory over forces of death.
C. 1) Sinful life of people; 2) threat of eternal death to sinful mankind; 3) rescue of people in the Christ, revival in the Holy Spirit and getting of a prospect of an eternal life and a victory over the enemy – death.
Even in this extremely simplified scheme we can fix the main motive of development of the big drama of eternal struggle of Life with Death as it has been presented in one of the forms of practically- religious ideology. Besides, the basic formula is represented in separate episodes of the Book (revival of Lazarus, revival of the daughter of a synagogue servant).
Revealing of a universal-cultural basis in literary consciousness and entertainment art was realized in this work through the CUB-analysis of such writings, as Ivan Bunin's story A Light Breath, short stories of Marguerite de Navarre from the collection of stories The Heptameron, Anna Ahmatova's poems.
I have also analyzed short stories which Michael Bakhtin and Olga Frejdenberg used as examples. Besides at a level of „concepts” the given type of a discourse was examined by us on the material of a methodological reflection on the structure of works of art by Michael Bakhtin, Lеv Vуgotsky, Yuri Lotman and other researchers.
In the first named piece of literature the formula „life - death – immortality” was reconstructed by Me at a level of a disposition, the key moments of that are oppositional pairs „childhood – a tomb”, „sex with Malyutin – murder”, „conversation on a light breath – funeral”.
In wide meaning these pairs express a global opposition of life and death. A Light Breath – it is a figuratively designed culmination category of universal-cultural structure of the text of this piece of literature at the basis of which there is the CUB – immortality. Olga Meshcherskaya after her death, as well as Snow Maiden and Mauka (The Wood Song) "was dissolved" in the nature, but she did not totally disappear – her „light breath” is now everywhere.
Except for a full representation in The Heptameron of the CUB and the codes, considered by Me, in these collected stories the basic world outlook formula also is precisely traced. The short story from examples of M. Bakhtin is regarded by him as a narration about a victory of forces of life over forces of death when the legionary who watched over a crucified robber, under food and drink consoles the widow directly on the tomb of her husband, and she for this pleasure releases from the pressure of grief and comes back to plenitude of life. This plot tells, he writes, about a continuous chain of victories of life over death.
The same universal-cultural structure underlies the short story of Giovanni Boccaccio, which was investigated by Olga Frejdenberg (enamoured of the wife of his comrade, the man rescues her, wrongly buried, and she gives birth to the child).
In the science-fiction the motive of increasing threat of a life with the following victory over danger of death is expressed in an unusual way. Frequently it is the description of invasion of enemy civilizations to the Earth, their encroachment on beautiful women, hunting of the aliens who have come back from the future, for children who aftertime become their enemies, consuming of people from within through penetration into their body of ugly extraterrestrial forms of a life, destruction of a genotype of people or manipulations with it, etc.
It is easy to see, that stereotyped schemes of science-fiction rotate around the basic formula of world view, opening it in forms of unusual sources of mortal danger to the person with a following victory of vital positive characters.
If we turn to novel, its universal-cultural substructure entirely entering a triad „life – death – revival” was extremely successfully and laconically outlined by J. Lotman. This author directly turns to consideration of this triad in that kind of it, in which it was realized in the Russian novel. Raskolnikov, Mitja Karamazov, and other characters of Feodor Dostoevsky recreate Муcola Gogol's scheme from The Dead Souls where Tchitchikov goes to Siberia (a hell, death). Having passed a hell of Siberia, these characters "revive".
Already given short definition of specificity of the novel as a kind of a cultural discourse shows, that in its basis there is the same "eternal" universal-cultural scheme, which is filled with the concrete historical contents, caused by features of cultural-world outlook ideas of an epoch.
In my work the same scheme has been reconstructed on examples of works of Taras Shevchenko The Princess, Lesya Ukrainka The Wood Song, in Alexander Pushkin and Anna Ahmatova's verses, and also in plots of the tragedy Hamlet by William Shakespeare and doll performances, in operas of Giuseppe Verdi Aida and Mykola Lysenko Natalka-Poltavka, Alexander Dovzhenko's film The Earth, etc.
So, the received results have allowed to raise a level of universality of my hypothesis as it was found out, that not only the fairy tale structure, but also the structure of wide range of other texts has in the basis the system of the is universal-cultural meanings, organized in the basic formula „life – death – immortality”.
At the same time the analysis has allowed to affirm, that the given hypothesis has found its confirmation because there was explicated the reproduced effect when, basically, any cultural text has fallen under procedure of revealing in it of the CUB-structure.
6. Outlines of a new paradigm of the analysis of the origin of invariant structure of culture texts: “the universal-cultural version”
This chapter begins with a summary of historico-generative concept of Olga Frejdenberg about “metaphors of primitive consciousness” which is regarded by Me as a break of a paradigm „reality – text”. Further its critical analysis and a universal-cultural interpretation are given. As a result, there was deconstructed the real contents of her concept. The basic idea, extracted from her concept, consists in that the structure of texts of culture is not the "representation" of reality. This structure is a product of creative spontaneous activity of our consciousness which actualizes during the process of synthesis of deep meanings of texts those world outlook invariants which are determined by the basic vital purposes of the person. As a result, it has been ascertained, that "metaphors" offered by her are either categories of ultimate bases (for example, group of metaphors of "Death"), or world outlook codes (group of metaphors "Meal").
For a confirmation of my conclusions in the following parts of the work, there are considered theories and the concepts confirming a hypothesis of autogenerating of a universal-cultural structure of the texts of culture. Among them - Charles Jung’s and Stanislav Grof's ideas about subconscious factors of generating and synthesis of inner invariant semantic structures of texts of culture, fixing of the fact of spontaneous autogenerating of identical CUB-structures in a historical and political idea, in fairy tales and children psychology by Howard Olker, an explication of autogenerated reproduction of universal-cultural senses in the work of productive ability of imagination through experiments with children's creativity of Italian storyteller Janny Rodari and introspection of a Russian children's writer Nikolay Nosov.
In the following part of work there was carried out the analysis of processes of self-generation of universal-cultural senses in the conception „language as a home of objective reality” (Martin Heidegger) and through spontaneous poetic creativity (Maximilian Kirienko-Voloshyn). Then the process of creation of a piece of writing (on example of a short story) is investigated and it is offered to consider it as a fluent creative synthesis of universal-cultural connections of actants. The development of heuristic potentialities of critically reconsidered concept of O.Frejdenberg has finally fixed the results received in the previous sections. It was realized by a demonstrative explication of the fact that owing to a projection of the human CUB-senses which are available in structure of independent consciousness, to an objective reality, there takes place a universally-cultural semeiotization of the entire reality and its separate fragments and objects. But as both this semeiotization, and objects and fragments of reality are a mobile objective structure of the contents of world outlook consciousness then we have carried out a restoration of the invariant cultural-world outlook contents in stage evolution of objectively- figurative bearers of is universal-cultural meaning (a totem - tsar - slave-clown).
Examination of a conceptual part of work of O.Frejdenberg has shown that under "metaphors" she has presented a full set of categories of ultimate bases and world outlook codes, including their formula sheaf. Along with this, it is necessary to accept, that the classification of "metaphors" developed by her, is extremely inconsequent and incorrect, in particular in view of their universal-cultural sub-base.
Thus, the mortal CUB, represented in „metaphor” "Death", serves not only as a rubricator for a range of some other metaphors. This category is considering by O.Frejdenberg in itself also, as the subject of classification, being included in other headings, particularly, in the group of „metaphors” "Meal".
The second reproach consists in the following. Declaring, that the subject of her analysis should be initial formations of before-logical and before-world outlook consciousnesses, O.Frejdenberg actually carries out a reconstruction of „metaphors of primitive consciousness” on the basis of the analysis of late, derivative forms of logically structured and Weltanschauung, ideologically oriented consciousness (specifically, myths).
At the same time, O. Frejdenberg's doubtless merit is that she tried to find a source of structural invariants of texts in archaic formations of consciousness, though she did not reject the idea of their borrowing and „migrations”. Initial ceremony „reality”, the structure of which is usually considered as a source of structurization of the text of culture „derived” from it, is only a field of demonstration, but by no means the source of this structure origin.
The invariant universal-cultural structure of the text of culture lies in the depths of human subjectivity, on what O.Frejdenberg, neglecting serious enough for those times possible accusations in idealism, sagaciously indicated in her works.
In my opinion, the given structurization-forming subjectivity does not belong only to the "primitive" consciousness as O.Frejdenberg considered. The invariant of cultural consciousness in the same measure, as in remote times, lives and acts at present and will act in the future. Therefore, it is incorrect to consider this primitive consciousness and its "metaphors" as that source from which the stereotyped "patterns" of the subsequent cultural forms have originated.
What O.Frejdenberg considers as metaphors of primitive consciousness is not something forgotten in the far passed times. Their senses are always relevant, in any epoch. Taking into account a continuous action of eternal the existential factors, defining the stereotype of key parameters of human attitude to the world, these coincidences are caused by the fact that people of all times and nations certainly reflect on eternal philosophical questions and reconstruct the immortal themes in the literature. Owing to this deep identity of texts at level of CUB and codes, it becomes possible to observe the typological coincidences, identities and parallels in different cultural texts, but already at a level of their external displays (motives, plots, themes, figures, characters).
If we meet identical texts in different cultures it is impossible to deny the fact of any borrowing, migration or reproduction. But there is a question – what is the reason of borrowing of that by one culture from another? The reason of this, most likely, is that in each culture some "eternal" problems continue to remain relevant at all times. Therefore here it is necessary to speak not about simple mechanical borrowing, but about actualization of existential senses in texts of culture at a level of their inner structure. For each person who has come to this world, the questions of his own life and death will be always important and actual.
Caused by patrimonial unity of the person, the identity of notional and vital searches of people dictates the presence of the given identity also in these answers offered in different cultures, which as a result are reduced to a universal-cultural invariant of the persevering strengthening of a life, a passionate desire to overcome death and to reach if not eternal, but a long life. Ancient texts, which did not have any existential meanings (for example, inventory tablets from Mesopotamia), are interesting today only to experts of particular speciality, whereas the myth of Hilgamesh, of searches for immortality, excites imagination of our contemporaries.
C. Jung and S. Grof in a certain sense were inspired with a search of culture universalias as they, basing on the concept of subconscious, put before themselves the purpose to trace how these inborn elements of human subconsciousness determine the contents and structure of mythological legends, images, dreams and cultural texts in general. C. Jung considered these factors as archetypes, and S.Grof – as the so-called basic perinatal matrixes (BPM). Both the archetypes, and BPM, examined from my point of view, have easily opened their universal-cultural contents. And it concerns not only such obviously expressed CUB-archetypes, as blood or the murderer of the father (an aggressive code), but also some archetypes of erotic code, shadows (the latent negative features of the person as a result having mortality in their basis), "egoism" (Selbst) (a heart of personal consciousness as expression of completeness of vital forces, vitality), etc.
Eventually, as the base of vitally-important directives C. Jung points out the poles of a life – birth and death referred to the sphere collective subconscious. As the certain measure this circumstance was accepted also by C. Jung, speaking that archetype constituents of dreams of the little girl, which he has selected for a substantiation of his viewpoint, are reduced to ideas of destruction (aggression as destruction) and restoration (restoration as revival). The general limit of this phenomenon was pubertal age of the girl (erotic coding of life as continuation of a clan, as clan immortality) and the presentiments of her life premature ending (mortality).
Achievements of immortality through overcoming of threat of death as a formula invariant of all archetype motives is indirectly accepted by C. Jung as he draws a parallel between dreams of the girl and ceremonies of initiation (confirmation) which have such invariant structure (life – death – revival). From these important remarks of C. Jung it is possible to draw a conclusion, that he accepts, that in a basis of archetypes there are some wider world outlook structures which are the categories ultimate bases.
S. Grof, known as the initiator of transpersonal psychology, having investigated a huge file of texts of culture, has put forward an idea according to which the invariant constituents of the mentioned texts are determined by that they are structured according to certain schemes reflecting the stages of childbirth. One’s own birth does not pass for the person without leaving a trace, and in its key stages is fixed in „perinatal” to sphere of subconsciousness, determining to a great extent the following postnatal conscious experiences of many life circumstances within the limits of psychological structure of the person generated under influence of these matrixes. He declares that connection of biological experience of a person own birth with experience of dying and a new birth, which is shown in imaginations, dreams, works of art, etc. is rather deep and specific.
As after the analysis carried out by us it was found out, that BPM of S.Grof on the whole are the original expression of a basic triad "life – death – revival" experienced by the person during the process of her birth, then we can draw a conclusion, that if this memory of one’s own birth sets the structure of personal consciousnesses, then its structure also should correspond with this triad. That is, an invariant of the derived from these BPM substantial layers of consciousness are the categories of ultimate bases.
H. Olker's leading ideas are close to my opinions. His analysis essentially differs from all previous attempts to throw light on the origin and essence of invariant constituents of texts of culture. The main point of his idea consists in the statement of generating of culture invariants in depths of our consciousness owing to that a text of culture appears not so much as reflection of "reality" by our consciousness, but as a product of active designing by our consciousness of universal senses which are introduced in this "reality". He has carried out the proof of this thought by demonstration of identity of fairy tale texts with historical and political ones. Besides it turned out, that the American test for the best memorizing of the text by children shows, that such text is the fairy tale, defined by V. Propp as the basic (Аф131) at the heart of which, as well as in historical works (Arnold J. Toynbee), there lays the basic world outlook formula.
So, each of these scientists following their own way, actually came to conclusion, that the structure of consciousness is determined by categories of ultimate bases, which during their autogeneration and filling with the concrete contents form an authentic CUB-structure of all texts of culture.
From the point of view of a substantiation of idea of autogenerating of universal-cultural structures and one of the variants of the basic world outlook formula there are interesting examples of spontaneous children's creativity which are accompanied by introduction in the texts of the certain threat with the purpose of reproduction of the full basic formula „life - death – immortality” in the variant „life – a fatal threat – removal of the threat”. Giving children a task of creation of their own fairy tale, J. Rodari has found out, that all of them do not fall outside the limits of a drama of life and death. That is, the productive childish consciousness spontaneously generates such structures that base on categories of ultimate bases and the basic vital purpose.
Something similar was found out by another children's writer, N.Nosov during introspection of his creative work when he found out, that in a basis of the plot of the story (touching contemporary themes) written by him there has laid down an archaic, though weakened and transformed motive of occurrence of threat and its avoidance. Determined by stage and age-specific and sociohistorical factors the forms of representation of the given intention in the structure of subconsciousness of children, and, by the way, of adults, cannot be denied. There will be no greater exaggeration to state, that the basic intention of our consciousness, initially programmed on avoidance of danger and on a survival, is always turned up to overcoming of a fatal threat. For these reasons, the person, young or adult, during realization of his mysterious productive ability of imagination (I.Kant) and creative imagination from any offered objective material, certainly synthesizes such texts, which will be structurally organized on the basis of this fundamental intention.
The analysis of game behaviour of children, ideas on „an instinct of immortality” by Jacob Golosovker, Elena Ulybina's psychoanalytic reconstruction of psychology of the girl-teenager in A.Ostrovsky's play Snow Maiden, show, that corresponding universally-cultural intentions of consciousnesses can invariantly structure a fairy tale (and any other text) directly during their generation. Plots with the CUB-structural core become "eternal" not owing to presence in them of any images already known before, characters or motives, but owing to "eternity" (topicality for each generation) of their invariant universal-cultural contents. The Last one is independently generated (self-generated) by modern sub/consciousness, originating as a result of working of cognitive creative mechanisms.
It is well known, that M. Heidegger defines language as the Home of Being, which proclaims itself to us through poets. The poetry is understood by him as formation of Being by means of a word. In the work I was limited to consideration of a question on how the language of poetry correlates with Being (in all its meanings known to philosophy) which in this case is understood as the text, that is as totality of obvious or mysterious senses and as through language of poetry their possible revelation. I searched for the answer to it in works of M. of Kirienko-Voloshyn, the reference to whom has shown, that through spontaneous creativity of the poet the Being demonstrated itself as a certain text, which in its basis does not fall outside the limits of categories of ultimate bases and codes, and it was the result of spontaneous autogenerating of senses, instead of simple reflection of reality. M. Kirienko-Voloshyn describes this process in an image of a spider, which spins from itself a fabric of knowledge: „Where spun in smoky dreams the consciousness-spider / The living tissues bodies, but body was – a sound”.
One of the most interesting problems of the theory of creativity is a problem of spontaneous synthesis by story-tellers or writers of numerous plots. Here the most important for us was a substantiation of the statement about a certain "a priori" prediction of produced plots. The idea consists in development of that indisputable conclusion, that at a final set of constant structural elements of the text the number of their combinations is also final.
Reasoning from the results of my work on the structural analysis of a short story I have shown, that Marguerite de Navarre was free in her choice of characters and in representation of variations of relations between them, drawing them from their final register. But she was not free in a choice of most these very relations. As well as modern science fiction writers, she recreated these relations mainly in two of their four possible forms – erotic and aggressive though communications on the basis of alimentary, and in particular – informative code were also realized by her.
It is obvious, that their astonishing stable presence in works of different genres of different times can be explained only by autogeneration of the given types of relations, that testifies that exactly these intentional, spontaneous, immanent preferences of creators of the work of literature, which are at the bottom of their basic vital directives, make a basis of those humanly important senses which are shown during the work of their productive ability of imagination and can are realized in the results of their creative synthesis of texts.
As I already said, the world is a projection of humanly important senses on an objective reality. A fundamental feature of the substantial and structurally-formal side of these senses is their subordination to the universal-cultural meanings inserted in the general world outlook formula „strengthening of life, overcoming of death, aspiration to immortality”.
Having passed the theoretical "circle" and having critically reconsidered the concept of „metaphors of primitive consciousness” of O.Frejdenberg, we again, but already at higher, theoretically-based level, have approached the statement declared at the beginning of work that owing to this projecting feature of our consciousness both the world as a whole, and its separate fragments, are semiotized by us within the limits of our most fundamental vital aims.
At the same time, the acceptance that the mentioned "metaphors" are anything else but categories of ultimate bases and the world outlook codes connected in a formula sheaf „life – death – immortality”, allowed us to show, that the unusual meanings of habitual things reconstructed by O.Frejdenberg do not fall outside the limits of this formula. For example, it has been shown, that such „archetype” concepts as House, Field, Temple have exactly these meanings.
The temple appears as a special sacral place, where there is given a communion of “favour and life of a deity” to the believers. Its vertical and horizontal dimensions have strongly expressed CUB-semantics. It is clear from orientation of temples on a line „East – West” (life - death), that determines the position of altars only in its eastern part, and a front entrance – so that the movement to a temple was only from the West on the East, from death – to life.
Crowning of the dome-sky by the cross with its diasemantics „death-revival”, the peculiarities of the orthodox cross with slanting section of its bottom horizontal part which by its spatial orientation also symbolizes a victory over death and the strengthening of life - all this unconditionally points out to universal-cultural structuredness of a temple architectural text which is not limited only to these senses. „The temple” acts also as a high life ideal (an information code of vital universalia) to which should lead all the roads.
According to O.Frejdenberg, the matter concerns a certain complex of senses which was developed during a semiotized consumption of food, copulations and funeral actions during initial, before-ceremonial periods of their display. The general "scheme" of its „construct” looked like a movement from occurrence and bloom to the decline, and that movement was carried out by an animal-totem, which was torn up and eaten up, managing certain ritualized actions. Later is the sun, leaders, emperors, gladiators, olympians, defendants and, finally, actors became its personification.
Consequently, these initial senses became inherent to all things and actions which surrounded these figures – actually to ceremonies and rituals, cities, Olympic and other games, constructions (to triumphal arches, pillars, to images of lions, to gates, doors, to wreaths on them, to windows), to things of the daily use (to a table, a cloth, a chair, awnings, marquees, to a veil, to a carousel), to a theatre (comedy and tragedy, stage, orchestra), to literary genres and other texts of culture, inclusive with ritual food (sausage, pies, forcemeat and peas). E.g., such traditional elements of Olympic Games, as letting out of an eagle before their opening (now - pigeons) and crowning the winner with a laurel wreath have the meaning of a victory over forces of death (immortality).
In antiquity Olympic struggle was a real hand-to-hand fighting, and it continued until one of the opponents was not killed. Since those times when these games still were a fatal competition, the one who after games remained alive, was crowned with a wreath as a token of a victory over death.
The initial meanings of peas are also unusual for us. Special ritual semiotization of food has led to transferring of "food" semantics to things and phenomena entirely different from food. It is well know, that the clown is often given an epithet "pea fool", as well as the expression "under the tsar Pea" (in days of yore).
Exactly from farces of beans and lentil there was originated a stereotypic expression "a pea clown". In general, both the clown, and tsar once directly personified the universal-cultural basic formula life – death – revival, and peas (lentil) became associated with them for the reason, that before ritual killing of princeling (and then - his substitute, the slave), they were crowned with a pea straw, echoes of that have reached in some ceremonies almost up to present times.
„Storm of applause turning into ovation” now is a sign of approval by a public of performance of an actor or report of a speaker. But their original meaning was differed from the modern one. The main character of an ancient theatre was the god of death and revival Dionysius. In a theatrical drama it was the Dionysius-bull or the Dionysius-goat.
If this goat partially denominates two drama genres, then the sheep denominates a drama of a victory, an ovation. Ovation is a pleasure, a celebration, a wreath that was put on a head of commander which assimilated to a victorious animal (Dionysius-ram-goat) which revives for life during the moment of passage under a triumphal arch. Here we also see a full development of basic formula.
Similar semantics had also the triumphal arches which are present in many cities of the world. According to O. Frejdenberg, a triumphal arch was a celestial horizon and consequently they had a semicircular arch. The victory of the sun, the occurrence of totem coincides with entrance through a heavenly- afterlife gate, through a triumphal arch which divided the two worlds. The semantics of a triumphal arch as means of overcoming death is better expressed by the fact that sometimes it was constructed for prevention of danger that in itself guaranteed rescue from death. Emperor, solemnly passing under the arch to a circus, appeared as the winner-sun. By this he expressed the idea of overcoming of death, the establishing of life. Here it is easy to see the presence of the basic world outlook formula.
Often near a gate, doors or on the walls there are represented lions (the so-called „lion's gate”). In their image there was fixed a crossing of "border" between two worlds, light and darkness. So, stone lions, which are half put out from the house, or just simple images of their muzzles on the walls is the transformed image of an archaic totem which has died and has revived. The universal-cultural formula is also totally presented here.
A bright erotic-genetic semantics have the doors of houses or gates which indicated a maternal womb. Giving birth, continues O.Frejdenberg, the woman opens and closes the celestial doors. Therefore Janus, the god of door, was called at childbirth. Except the mentioned CUB-semantics the door had also additional meaning which originated from a custom to copulate on a threshold and to hang up a wreath on a door as modern Americans like.
Traditional night or evening songs (serenades) of an enamoured man under a window (balcony) of his beloved originate from that tradition when a drunk reveller in a “komos” (a night procession) in the end of procession addressed not a woman, and a door (later – a window), and then publicly laid down with a woman directly on a threshold. From the same sources, considers O.Frejdenberg, there is a tradition to hang up a wreath on a door. In fact „komos” is a variant of a carol which name originates from the name of a branch of laurel or an olive in skeins of wool which was left on a door as a sign of fertility (erotically coded genitive).
Similar mortally-immoral semantics in different codes have also fabrics, curtains, tents of circus and roundabouts on which the stars were painted. They represented the idea of heavenly circulation, a motion from death to life. A bridal veil is the same heavenly arch which has a dualistic semantics both of death, and revival. Hence – coverlets and cloths with which the dead men and a table on which they laid were covered. Staying on a table-altar, the died man was considered as totem-king, certainly due to revive. From here originate those meanings of a table which are connected with the Supreme authority – „Vоlоdуmуr in Kуїv on a table” (ukr., russ. „стол” – ‘a table’, derived concepts „столиця” - ‘a capital’, „престол” – ‘throne’).
All this allows to draw conclusions that usual things and phenomena examined from the point of view of the approach offered by O. Frejdenberg which heuristic potential is developed by us with reference to the offered universal-cultural concept of the analysis of culture texts, show their forgotten or unusual meanings which go back to invariants, or culture universalias, such as birth, life, death and immortality, and corresponding world outlook codes.
Rejecting the idea of direct borrowing of deep universal-cultural invariants in texts of culture in general and in pieces of literature in particular and insisting on acceptance of the concept of their generation, I do not deny the fact, that development of cultural forms provides the presence of a certain continuity, tradition and heredity of development of the fixed cultural images, plots and characters on a background of their natural transformation.