Mythological intertext in Neil Gaiman's «American gods» and in Liubko Deresh's «The last love affair of Asura Maharaj»

in English

  • Ivan Pasternak Department of World Literature and Comparative Literary Criticism, Vasyl Stefanyk Precarpathian National University
Keywords: intertextuality, mythological intertext, English postmodern literature, Ukrainian postmodern literature


Aim The article deals with the problem of mythological intertext functioning in postmodern prose. The aim of the article is to reveal the mythological sources of L. Deresh’s novel «The Last Love Affair of Asura Maharaj» and N. Gaiman’s novel «American Gods», to discover the specificity of the functioning of different mythoelements in the analyzed texts, and to make its comparative analysis.

Methods In the article there has been applied the system approach by using the cultural and historical method and the genetic method. On the basis of the genetic study of the analyzed novels there has been investigated the main mythological pretexts which have served as a source for creation the texts. The applied methods made it possible to analyze the system of characters in N. Gaiman’s and L. Deresh’s novels, to study various mythological motives and mythologems in these novels.

Results In the article there has been given an exhaustive analysis of the functioning of interfigural elements, motive of Apocalypse, mythological concepts in the novels. There has been studied the connection of the motive of Apocalypse, binary opposition life / death, concepts of reincarnation and resurrection and mythologems of travel and search with the timespace characteristics of the mythopoetic picture of the world. There has also been done the comparative analysis in terms of sources of borrowings, i. e. mythological pretexts, and the demand of the readers’ background knowledge for the proper text understanding.

Scientific novelty The article is aimed at creating the basis for the comparative study of mythological intertext functioning in English and Ukrainian postmodern literature. There has been made an attempt to find the typological similarities and differences in the specificity of using the mythological sources by N. Gaiman and L. Deresh.

Practical significance The article may serve for the further investigation of the problem intertextuality, in particular the functioning of mythological elements in postmodern texts.

Comparative literature