Plzeňské sympozia

Michal Fránek

“The Pale Ennui of Living Did Not Come Around Here...”: Searching for the Moravian People in Czech Literature of the 19th Century

pp. 74–82 (Czech), Summary 82 (English)

The image of the countryside as the “healthy core” of the nation maintaining original culture untouched by outside influence is one of the constitutional staples of Czech literature in the 19th century. Hasty industrialization during the 19th century challenged this idealized representation. Czech literates slowly turned their interest towards Moravia, where traditional attributes of folklore remained intact on a much wider scale. Our essay examines the relationship between Moravia and the Ruchovci and Lumirovci writers, especially Julius Zeyer and Svatopluk Čech. It monitors the confrontation of their ideals with reality and focuses on the phenomena to which they paid attention (the folk poet, folk costumes, folk architecture) their interpretation of which contained certain paradoxes.

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