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The article presents the ways of valuating and the functioning of values in a poetic text. Selected names of flowers appearing in Young Poland’s poetry have been used as the exemplary material. The author aims at indicating how far the general model of valuating, which is established in the standard variety of the Polish language, is reflected in modernistic works, to what extent poetic texts creatively process conventional ways of valuating connected with words referring to flowers, and how far they introduce a reader into a new, or other world of values connected with floral lexis. The analyses presented in the article prove that individual, modernistic ways of valuating the names of flowers and the visions of values connected with flowers differ from those established in the language and culture. Iris, culturally associated with ‘(sophisticated) beauty’, in modernistic poetic texts is a medium of anti-values: ugliness and kitsch; forget-me-not, which is commonly connoted with positively featured ‘memory’, in Young Poland’s lyrics is called a bad weed of memory; rose, stereotypically connected with ‘trans- cendental good’, in poetry from the turn of the 19th and 20th centuries connotes ‘transcendental evil’ and ‘sin’; similar to lily, which conventionally is an image of ‘purity’, ‘innocence’ and ‘virginity’, whereas in Young Poland’s works it evokes ‘eroticism’, ‘passion’, ‘sensual love’ and ‘sin’. The names of flowers in Young Poland’s poetic texts are evaluated by means of different kinds of rhetorical devices and semantic changes: metaphors, personifications, anthropomorphisms, hyperboles, accumulation of epithets, modifications in the connotative sphere of words, as well as categorization, a change of rationality, or symbol exposition, thanks to which traditional valuating of flowers and conventional values connected with them are subject to transformations. In effect of such transformations, valuating becomes ambivalent, positive associations are more often than not destroyed, connotations carrying negative axiological undertone prevail, and values are substituted with anti-values.
The work of Camille Flammarion (1842-1925), French astronomer and spiritualist, is an important, though much neglected, source of inspiration of Polish literature in the 19th century. The literary Positivists (like eg. Eliza Orzeszkowa) were the first to acknowledge the astounding breadth of his vision, guided by an extraordinarily agile intelligence. However, the full scope of his influence became manifest with the next generation of poets and artists, the Young Poland movement. So Wincent Korab Brzozowski's poem in prose 'Among the Stars' (1913) is in fact a paraphrase of Flammarion's 'Uranie' (1889), 'an astronomical romance' and a spiritualist version of the dreams of a follower of the Positivist Religion of Mankind. Korab Brzozowski drew on the French model in order to reassess the experiences of an over-refined, decadent, atrophying 'I'. Ironic in tone, this reappraisal shows that he longer sticks to his youthful beliefs. At the same time, however, the self-mocking momentum leaves intact the foundation of his decadent worldview, ie. the perception of one's irrevocable loneliness.
(Title in Polish - 'Programowa czy absolutna? 'Sonata ciepienia' Ignacego Dabrowskiego na tle dziewietnastowiecznego sporu o istote muzyki'). This article examines the role of Ignacy Dabrowski's 'Agony Sonata' in the context of the idea of the synthesis of the arts, popular with the adherents of Young Poland and the modernists at large. At the key point of the novella the main character Paweł Orlicz makes a paraphrase of a poem, which he has just heard in his head. The prose paraphrase follows closely the structure of a sonata. Any attempt at interpreting the meaning of this episode has to go back to the 19th-century debates about the nature of music. It was basically a dispute between believers in programmatic music, ie the idea that composing music consists in mimicking pre-existent narrations or images, and those who upheld the idea of absolute music, ie. music believed to be a direct emanation of an ideal 'higher realm'. The latter concept, it should be noted, was heavily indebted to the philosophy of Arthur Schopenhauer. Given the representational nature of literature one would expect that the 'Agony Sonata' would be tilted in favour of the programmatic approach. Yet the creative process which it purports to record endows music with the function of the original impulse. Moreover, in the light of Maria Podraza-Kwiatkowska's definition of the symbol Dabrowski's novella reveals its fine congruence with the theory of absolute music. Seen from this perspective, it constitutes itself as a representation of a gradual and complete process of emanation. As a result literature can acquire the expressive potential of music and the idea of the synthesis of the arts find its full realization.
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