The Concept of ‘Brotherhood’ in Taras Ševčenko’s Poetry

Liana Goletiani


The Author analyzes the linguo-culturological idea of “brotherhood” in both Ukrainian language and Russian language works by Ševčenko. This word and its related metaphorical meanings are a central poetic instrument of Ševčenko’s literary works and connect them with the ancient traditions of Ukrainian folklore and religious beliefs. Together with the opposite idea of “discordance”, the idea of “brotherhood” is an important tool for the mythological reconstruction of Ukrainian history and of the poet’s philosophical and ideological message. A lexical analysis of the concept of “brotherhood” indicates that the term was very frequent and had numerous nuances in Ukrainian poems, while it was rather rare and semantically limited in the Russian works. The Author offers a lexicographic definition of the key-words, then describes their linguistic function, and syntagmatic, paradygmatic and associative relationships with semantic analysis procedures. Among the associated ideas, national and social liberty are dominant. Here too the differentiation of Ukrainian and Russian works is evident: the conceptualization of the associated terms is similar when it invests the Christian semantic field, but is significantly different when it concerns historical and social issues.

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