Criticism, Open Realism - History of foreign literature...


Aragon gives a lot of strength to literary criticism and works in the field of theory of literature, aesthetics and art history. In 1955 he published the book "Soviet Literatures", giving an overview of their state, including in the national republics.

Two figures attract his special attention: Mayakovsky and Gorky. For Aragon Mayakovsky, whose love he has borne throughout his life, "the last poet of the past world and the first poet of the world of the future" (a formula once expressed by Engels as applied to Dante). As for the author of Klim Samgin (the article "Gorky's Light"), then the significance of him - an artist looking to the future - is enormous. He "lit up for many young minds of France the way from the transcendental heights to people ...". As far as Aragon himself, Gorky made no one else believe in the correctness of the chosen path. "

A number of works by Aragon in the 1950s. was devoted to the problems of socialist realism. He understood that this method can be used not only in Soviet, but also foreign literature, advanced artists of the West. At the same time, this problem was also studied by Soviet critics.

Aragon pays much attention to the affirmation of the humanistic, freedom-loving traditions of French literature, then writes his works on Stendhal, Hugo, Zola, the realist artist Courbet . He also emphasizes the fruitful character of United States-French literary connections having deep roots, he writes with great warmth about Tolstoy, Dostoevsky, Chekhov. He also creates a two-volume work on Matisse, the great Impressionist painter, his friend, who originally interpreted the painterly manner of the artist based on his biography and aesthetics.

Open Realism

Aragon seemed to hold his hand on the pulse of time. I caught the changes in the artistic atmosphere and was not afraid to correct my views. 1960's. turned out to be a turning point for his aesthetic position: they showed that Aragon had a " sense of the way." In this decade, the so-called and theater of the absurd, which opened fruitful non-traditional directions of literary development. Aragon was sympathetic to such innovations (in the articles "Eternal Spring", "It is necessary to call things by their own names", "Realism of becoming", etc.), in which he noted the possibilities of enriching the traditional realistic manner. And I tried to use these innovations in my own artistic practice. He began to revise the dogmatic concept of realism as a kind of closed system, suggesting a different interpretation of it as a method of free, and, most importantly, open. "Realism without Shores." Aragon wrote a preface to it. Aragon, like Garaudy, was a supporter of realism, capable of answering questions posed by life that develops into the channel of "great discoveries" and comprehends unexplored areas.

Aragon ns denied socialist realism, not method, but current, wanted to "cleanse" it is from a vulgar understanding and imposed from above recipes, offering its broad understanding, i.e. the inclusion in it of artistic elements of modern artists, not only such as Kafka, but also such "new-Romanists" as Butor and Sollers. In fact, Aragon, like Garaudy, did not agree with the "disengagement", with the principled opposition of realism and modernism, which was considered the axiom of Marxist literary criticism. The very term realism without shores was in the eyes of Soviet criticism of those years sedition. And Aragon, besides supporting the "dissidents", with all the respect for him in secret, was subjected to severe reproaches from the apologists of social realism.

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