Gogol's "Taras Bulba" and Henryk Sienkiewicz's "With Fire and Sword"
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From the Paper:"This paper compares two historical novels, Nikolai Gogol's Taras Bulba and Henryk Sienkiewicz's With Fire and Sword, which cover roughly the same period in history and the same historical events, namely, the struggle for dominance between the Cossacks and the Poles in the latter half of the seventeenth century. The essay begins with a brief background of the two writers in order to situate their interest in history and the historical novel as a literary genre, noting that both writers were interested in history as a didactic and hortatory tool in portraying the epic struggle between good and evil. This accounts for the numerous historical inaccuracies in both novels, as well as for the remarkable similarities between the two works, despite their opposite points of view on the actual historical events: Gogol writes from the point of view of the Cossacks, Sienkiewicz from that of the Poles. The essay goes on to explore several themes common to both works, including the conflict between love and duty; disloyalty and betrayal; revenge and retribution; and the crucial role of coincidence in shaping events. This is followed by an extended discussion of the fairytale elements in the two novels, the attitude to women, romantic love, and several other common elements. The essay concludes with the observation that while the two novels are remarkably similar, they differ in one important respect: Taras Bulba is conceived as a tragedy, whereas With Fire and Sword is not, and conspicuously incorporates the traditional fairytale happy ending. Despite the many superficial similarities, the two novels are fundamentally different, a difference that can be measured in the effect that each novel has on its readers: Sienkiewicz's novel entertains the reader, Gogol's touches the reader's soul."
Cite this Term Paper:
Gogol's "Taras Bulba" and Henryk Sienkiewicz's "With Fire and Sword" (2014, September 23) Retrieved September 17, 2019, from https://www.academon.com/term-paper/gogol-taras-bulba-and-henryk-sienkiewicz-with-fire-and-sword-154021/
"Gogol's "Taras Bulba" and Henryk Sienkiewicz's "With Fire and Sword"" 23 September 2014. Web. 17 September. 2019. <https://www.academon.com/term-paper/gogol-taras-bulba-and-henryk-sienkiewicz-with-fire-and-sword-154021/>