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A.M. Gorky Institute
of World Literature
of the Russian Academy of Sciences

IWL RAS Publishing

A.M. Gorky Institute of World Literature
of the Russian Academy of Sciences


Povarskaya 25a, 121069 Moscow, Russia



Types of publications


Information about the author: 

Galina N. Ermolenko, DSc (PhD) in Philology, Professor of the Department of Literature and Journalism of Smolensk State University.

E-mail: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. 


The article examines the parallels between Voltaire’s stories (first of all, the story “Candide, or Optimism”) and Henry Fielding’s novel “The History of Tom Jones, a Foundling”. The author demonstrates the similarity of the two works at levels of problematics, system of characters, plot, communicative strategy of the author, and features of ironic discourse. Both works were created in the context of literary controversy during the struggle of renewing the narrative tradition. Both authors’ parody outdated literary forms and develop new ones based on the genre model of the educational novel (Bildungsroman). The problems of both works are formed in the context of philosophical discussion of human nature. Adopting a plurality of points of view allows both writers to compare different philosophical concepts and find a solution to contradictions in the form of a compromise. The similarity of the aesthetic platforms of both writers is manifested in the use of similar compositional techniques and various types of irony.


  • Keywords: literary polemics, philosophical concept, multiplicity of points of view, ironic discourse.


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