The concept of tragic humanism

The era, once started in Italy, previously found there and the proximity of the tragic finale. In the north of Europe in the beginning of the XVI century, still could hope for the advent of the golden age, but in Italy there was no hope. The changes were particularly evident in the plastic arts, until recently, it seemed, so perfectly embodied the forms of the body and face of a godlike man. The great Michelangelo (1474-1564) in his early youth managed to join the spirit of the Florentine Platonic Academy, the circle of Lorenzo de 'Medici - from there his victorious "David", his early drink ("Lamentation of Christ"), striking with harmony bodies, marble perfection of lines. This story Michelangelo will repeat a few more times - the last shortly before his death ( Pieta Rondanini ). This "one of the most tragic in the design of works by Michelangelo. In it, the great master seems to say goodbye to life. The degree of despair that is embodied in these two lonely figures, lost in a vast world, is immense. " Lost? Even as if not yet appearing, not making their way into this world through the gray, inert mass of the stone: the composition is conditional, the forms of the body are barely outlined ...

Much earlier, Michelangelo wrote a quatrain, inspired by his own sculpture - the figure of "Nights" on the tomb of Julian Medici in Florence:

Be silent, please, do not you dare wake me up.

Oh, in this age of criminal and shameful,

Do not live, do not feel - an enviable destiny ...

It's nice to sleep, it's more pleasant to be a stone.

Trans. F. Tyutchev

Michelangelo died the year Shakespeare was born. The epoch that began in Italy with great expectation was completed two and a half centuries later in England, Spain by the feeling of a great tragedy - the tragedy of humanism.

The value of Spain, its wealth and territory at this time immeasurably increase. In 1555, Emperor Charles V left an attempt by force of arms to subdue Protestants and concludes the Augsburg Peace with them. For the emperor, this was a difficult decision, followed by his abdication and the division of a vast domain between his son, who became King of Spain Philip II, and brother Ferdinand, who became emperor. Another world, concluded between Spain, France and England in Cato-Cambresis in 1559 and ending the period of the Italian wars, further strengthened the Spanish positions in Europe, effectively giving Italy its power and influence.

True, the Netherlands soon rise up against the Spaniards, who manage to bring the war for independence (1566-1609) to a victorious conclusion. This war is also called the first bourgeois revolution, which was, like many conflicts in Europe XVI-XVII centuries, under the sign of confrontation of Catholics and Protestants. Sometimes conflicts overflowed across interstate borders, sometimes countries and people were divided in civil strife: from 1560 to 1598, the religious war in France lasts.

The European climate of the era is changing. The relationship between the possible and the desired is changing:

"The people of the Renaissance wanted only what they could, and could do whatever they wanted ... But from the 1560's, some concern, dissatisfaction, the spirit of the European begins to eat down, giving rise to doubt as to whether life is as perfect and harmonious as it believed previous century. It became clear that the existence of the desired is better than the existence of the real, that our aspirations are higher and greater than our achievements. "

And where the rise of the era is already behind, and where the main achievements of the Renaissance are yet to come, there is no longer the same conviction that the ideal of is worthy of an individual. a sign of tragedy. Humanistic values ​​have not been revised - but rejected by reality. The meaning of the tragedy is that "the Renaissance itself did not incarnate, did not acquire plastic completeness," and "the best possibilities of the age are not allowed to defend themselves as its realities."

It was not allowed to defend itself as a historical reality for those utopian projects that inspired the era, regardless of whether they inherited it from the Middle Ages, dressed in knight armours and virtues, or were gleaned from the pages of ancient manuscripts. Towards the end of the Renaissance, chivalry and humanity will unite in one touching and sad image - the image of Don Quixote, with a spear at the ready trying to protect the dignity of the person and embody that attitude, which will be defined as tragic humanism.

It is commonly believed that the term tragic humanism emerged from the philosopher NA Berdyaev at a momentous moment - in 1918 - and was applied to Dostoevsky, who embodied the eternal principle of equilibrium in the world of Good and Evil, their endless struggle that can not be completed, but in itself gives the hero a feeling purification, tragic catharsis.

With respect to the late Renaissance, this concept was used in the works of AA Smirnov in a somewhat different sense - with the sociological correction inevitable in the Soviet era (see "Materials and Documents"). However, the amendment made does not prevent us from hearing the old meaning: tragic humanism implies, first of all, not the tragedy of humanism (like the one that will survive the 20th century), not disappointment in it, > and disappointment in the incarnation of the ideal. The ideal is finally realized as utopian, which does not cancel for a person the need to realize the desired and morally necessary, painting the act in the tone of selfless heroism.

Genre spread in the literature of the second half of the XVI century. corresponds to the diversity of the era. Here and a pastoral idyll , beckoning someone who is tired of life's storms, and restored to the heroic poem of the epic. Here, too, is the quixotic self-denial with which the hero strives to correct the imperfections of the world, and Hamlet's reflection, self-deepening, the path to which is indicated in the last great genre opening of the era - in Michel Montaigne's essay see § 13.3).

Materials and Documents

The concept of tragic humanism

... In the most advanced thinkers and artists of the era, this new point of view of the world and of man led to the deepening of humanistic ideals, to the emergence of tragic humanism. His best representatives in art are Shakespeare of the second period and Cervantes; Rembrandt, in a sense, Michelangelo, Leonardo da Vinci. Tragic humanism is an awareness of the tragedy of a person in a private-property and, moreover, re-feudalized society, the consciousness of the whole gravity of the struggle that a person conducts with this society-a struggle that does not always promise success and at times almost hopeless, but always always and in all cases necessary. And at the same time, it is the realization that the Renaissance worldview, with its idyllic optimism and simplicity, does not adequately arm for such a struggle, that it requires a more complex arsenal of ideas than that prepared by Renaissance humanism.

Tragic humanism believed that even if victory under the given conditions is impossible, it is still necessary to fight at least with thought, trying to penetrate into the essence of insoluble conflicts, since the victory of thought is the pledge of the future real victory over evil. Thus, Hamlet in Shakespeare struggles with thought and thought ... In the same way, thought became the life of Montaigne.

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