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On rights of the manuscript

UDC - 008

Alex Fantalov

Culture of Barbarous Europe: typology of mythological characters

24.00.01 - the theory and a history of culture

The abstract

Dissertations on competition of a scientific degree

The doctor of cultural science

Saint Petersburg


Work is executed on faculty of art culture of the Russian state pedagogical university by A.I. Herzen.

The general characteristic of work

The Actual of research is caused by growing interest to mythology as a whole and to a mythological heritage of Barbarous Europe in a number of many countries (France, USA, Ireland, Scandinavia, Russia, Baltia, Romania and some other) where the given heritage frequently is used as a material for creation various ideological and cultural projects. Thus, complication of many images and plots, it is capable to result in various speculative constructions. To prevent such danger of ideological gamble the best understanding of base mythological structure is capable.

The Purpose of research: on the basis of the analysis of monuments of art culture to reveal a structural nucleus of a pantheon, general for mythological traditions of Barbarous Europe and to look after its local variants.

Research problems:

1. On the basis of studying maximum big number of mythological plots of peoples of Barbarous Europe and related cultures, basing on the broad audience of domestic and foreign researches to create model of a structural nucleus of a pantheon of peoples of Barbarous Europe.

2. To reveal connections between socio-cultural changes and change of objects of worship at early stages of development (bronze and iron centuries) European peoples.

3. To lead comparison of literary and graphic sources, revealing laws of development of mythological images.

Object of research: culture of Barbarous Europe, mythological images in culture of Barbarous Europe.

Methodology of research:

1. In this thesis the comparative-historical method is base. As the majority of peoples of Europe and Indo-European peoples as a whole are related each other genetically the relatives who have occurred from a uniform root are also their mythologies. Hence, comparing mythological images of peoples of Barbarous Europe and them Indo-European relatives and finding typical features, we gradually can allocate initial types of gods.

2. To reveal a structural nucleus of a pantheon and variants of its functioning in various ethnic cultures the typological method helps in work.

3. As object of consideration is not only Barbarous Europe as a whole, but also the separate cultural worlds inside it, it is impossible to do without a cultural-historical method.

4. As the basic working method of research serves it a system-ikonographic method based on recognition in monuments of the fine arts of repeating motives and images and their consideration in view of written certificates of contemporaries and mythological sources. The art culture, with reference to a theme of the present research, means dualism of the literature and the fine arts, being additional each other sources at studying so co and fragmentary kept phenomenon, as mythology.

5. Research inevitably adjoins to such sciences as art criticism, archaeology, a history, ethnology and even the linguistics and if necessary addresses to methodological receptions of these sciences.

History of problems:

There are the extensive scientific literature investigating mythologies of various peoples of Europe. Nevertheless, in a domestic science attempt of their complex studying on a basis of simultaneously textual and graphic material was not undertaken yet. In most cases, scientists work within the framework of one ethnic culture, though it is known that really to understand a subject or the phenomenon it is possible only in comparison with similar for it.

Researches frequently geographically are located in the countries in which territory there is no time lived these peoples. As for the Celts we see, that on continent scientists of France were engaged in studying of their culture first of all (J.J. Hatt) and Czech (J.Filip). Island Celt culture investigated, accordingly, Britains (for instance P. Mac Cane). To the given question showed interest and scientific USA (F. Bober), by virtue of that in territory of this country large Irish and Scottish communities live.

The numerous works have devoted to the German-Scandinavian culture Scandinavian (B. Almgren, E. Oxenstirna, S. Lindkvist etc.), German (F. Hoysler), English (E. Davidson, A. Evans) experts. In Russia above this theme worked as A. Gurevich, E. Meletinsky, M. Steblin-Kamensky and other researchers.

The Thraco-Dacians were studied by scolars of Bulgaria (in H. Danov, M. Zoncheva), Romania and Moldova (I. Nikulitse).

The Scythians and the Sarmatians lived in Russian steppes therefore the Russian scolars (as V. Abaev, M. Artamonov, D. Raevsky, S. Jatsenko) considered these peoples.

East Slavs also were studied by Russian scolars (Rybakov, V. Sedov, V. Propp - let alone such authors, as A. Afanasjev and F. Buslaev) while concerning the western Slavs the priority belongs German (J. Herman) and Czech (L. Niderle) to scientists.

N. Velius and M. Gimbutas (USA) studied Balt culture.

As for cultures with which at modern peoples alive connection here not all so is unequivocal has interrupted. For example, strong schools etruscology have developed, for example, in due time in Germany (Э. Gerhard, E.Rashinger) and Russia (P. Modestov, A. Nemirovsky). The same can be told and about Hittites and Zoroastrian Persians cultures.

Among the scientists engaged in research Indo-European mythologies as a whole, J. Dumezil, the author of the so-called three-functional theory uses the greatest popularity. In its basis is the idea that is primary gods Indo-Europeans lays should be grouped on functions: magic authority, military force, fertility (the pantheon represented a projection socium Dumezil was supposed). At all beauty and logically and wide popular (ideas Dumezil use in the constructions many intellectuals of Europe - from such "new right philosopher" as Alaine de Benoix, up to his antipode -"mondialist" J. Attali) this theory is a little bit artificial and causes disputes. In particular, it is known, that the gods connected to sphere of fertility, had in most cases magic function (and, frequently and military). Nevertheless, extensiveness of erudition and the deep analysis of the French scientist have enriched a science with many valuable conclusions. Besides, as fairly marks P. Mac Cane, theory Dumezil gives reason for existence of the coordinated system of the gods inherited from Indo-European of the past.

In a Russian science Indo-European mythologies fruitfully are engaged in reconstruction of the most ancient I. Ivanov and V. Toporov. They, as well as Dumezil, investigate basically mythological texts. Using principles of structural linguistics, Ivanov and Toporov allocate some circles of the mythological characters described by a generality of fields of activity and, especially, the names which are going back to uniform Indo-European roots (for example: deiuo-"the day time shining sky"; perk-"thunder"; uel-connected to the world dead; iemo-"twin"; s (a) uel-"sun"; trit-, dhon-and (mo)-mer-the deities connected to water and the bottom world). These researches are of great importance. However, at all breadth of the scientific review, Ivanov and Axes almost did not concern the Celts and German-Scandinavians (also as Dumezil did not mention mythology of Balts and Slavs). Behind frameworks of their work there was, for example, such chain of gods, as Odin - Hermes - Mercury - a Lugh, genetically close, but having the names not connected among themselves (as frequently the mythological character started to be called not on a primary name, and one of epithets - that complicates work of the linguist).

Thus, at all variety of works existing in the world scientific literature on Indo-European mythologies, they or have local character, or concentrate the attention to any one party of art culture (as a rule, texts). And you see in definition of a structural nucleus of mythology studying of monuments graphic and arts and crafts which allows to fill in many lacunas of a textual material is capable to play very important role also and to give other time cuts that helps to see mythological images in development. In comparison of these both parties of art culture feature of the given work also consists. Thus it bases on maximum broad audience of researches and considers cultures of Barbarous Europe in unity, involving for comparison many related Mediterranean and Asian cultures.

Scientific novelty of work consists in revealing on the basis of the analysis of maximum wide art - historical material of a structural nucleus of mythologies of peoples of Barbarous Europe as several initial mythological types (by a principle of possession them of the most significant for ancient sociums functions), forming steady structure of a pantheon. All local variants of the given structure, in their coherence with features of historical development of separate peoples of Barbarous Europe are analysed. Such mythological types that are included in an initial pantheon of Barbarous Europe, as "the Cultural Hero" and "the God of Earth Powers" were interpreted new.

The main points of research:

1. In thesis the concept of "Barbarous Europe", including three aspects (cultural historical, religious, studial ones) is suggested.

2. The model of a structural nucleus of the European pantheon consisting of fifth extremely steady mythological types: the God of the Clear Sky, the God of the Thunder, the God of Earth Powers, the Cultural Hero, the Great Goddess is submitted. Each of these types had the certain social function, characteristic attribute, iconography and correspond with the certain mythological plots.

3. On basis of this model the functions of mythological characters of some the European pantheons are specified.

4. On the basis of this theoretical model lines non-identificated ikonographic images with mythological characters known in literary texts are identified also.

5. The correlation of data of a mythological nucleus in the various cultural worlds of Barbarous Europe with changes in cultural sphere was studied.

6. The role of the Greek-Roman civilisation as catalyst for expression by barbarous peoples in art of original religious ideas is revealed.

Theoretical value of thesis

The typologisation conducted in this thesis allows to systematise all variety of mythological images of Barbarous Europe and to clear connection between religious - mythological and social-cultural sphere at early stages of development of a society.

Practical value of thesis

Substantive ideas, conclusions and illustrative materials can be used by preparation of lecture rates for the supreme and average educational institutions and development of manuals on historical-cultural disciplines, at research of monuments graphic and arts and crafts.

Approbation of work

Substantive ideas of the dissertation and the received results were discussed at a postgraduate seminar and faculty meetings of art culture RSPU by name A.I. Herzen. They are published in articles of scientific conferences: "Punin's readings" (Saint Petersburg, April 7-8, 2000), "Culture of the Petersburg region in a science and education" (Saint Petersburg, September 28-29, 2000), "the Theory and practice of education in a context of domestic culture" (Saint Petersburg, April 18-20, 2001) etc.

The Material of the dissertation has formed a basis by development of programs of special courses: "Introduction in mythology of nations of the world", "Mythological images of Indo-Europe in iconography", "Mythologies of peoples of Northern Europe" which were approved in RSPU by name A.I. Herzen in 1999-2001

Structure of research. Work consists of the introduction, three chapters, conclusion, bibliography, containing 160 names and an album of photocopies of monuments.

The Basic maintenance of work



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