Information about the author:
Olga A. Bogdanova
Olga A. Bogdanova, DSc in Philology, Leading Research Fellow, Department of Russian Literature of the Late 19th – Early 20th Centuries, A.M. Gorky Institute of World Literature of the Russian Academy of Sciences, Povarskaya 25 a, 121069 Moscow, Russia.
ORCID ID: https://orcid.org/0000-0001-7004-498X
The article investigates the dialectics of the chronotopes of the estate and dacha windows in the Russian literature of the turn of the 19–20 centuries on the example of creativity of A.M. Gorky in the context of the works by A.P. Chekhov, I.A. Bunin, A.N. Tolstoy. It is shown the difference between the semiotics of the open window in the context of the estate and dacha topos: in the first case, it is a sign of homogeneity of the window and the inner window ideal space, in the second — there is a range of values of “threshold”, which are reduced to the pragmatics of the development of the external world and to the experience of danger, coming from it, on the one hand, and to the manifestation of the mediocrity of human existence — on the other. Moreover, the image of dacha in Gorky’s dramaturgy of the turn of the 19–20 centuries often lack such detail as an open window, which clearly indicates the alien nature of the surrounding space. Between the outside world and the inside of the house there is a buffer space of a covered terrace, a specific architectural detail of the turn of the 19–20 centuries, so that they constitute one communal rotation of hostile elements to each other. This negative uniformity is fundamentally different from the estate, where the open window meant interpenetration and mutual enrichment of beneficial and life-giving forces of nature and culture. In the play “Enemies”, by comparing the peasants with the workers in their attitude to the owners of the estate, is clearly shown the dynamics of the estate-dacha topos, marked by the variability of the chronotope of the window. So, the intelligent dacha is not just besieged by the hostile world, but lives under the constant threat of attack and destruction, while the estate house is ideally opened to the nearby space. Chronotopes of “blind”, closed and transparent, open windows just point to the marked difference between both toposes.
Keywords: A.M. Gorky, drama of 1900s, window, chronotope, topos, estate, dacha.