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Archetypes in Literatures and Cultures

Cultural and Regional Studies- In Collaboration with Sevinj Bakhysh and Izabella Horvath

Edited By Rahilya Geybullayeva

The formation of new countries after the collapse of the Soviet Union and the Eastern European block necessarily brings about an increased awareness of national identity and has given rise to more urgent attempts to define national literary and cultural facts. Among the facts to be determined are the circulation of similar cultural motifs, situations, symbols, plots, genres, words, and rituals. Such a situation gives rise to questions concerning the relationship between things that were constructed over centuries and relatively new archetypal plots and situations created by different authors, developed in different periods and in national literatures. For example, how does translation influence the migration of plots? Does the blurring of borders between sources and re-interpretations make it difficult to distinguish the original and the «kidnapped» texts? The forms of archetypes have changed and continue to change, creating a hyper-text. Taking these things into consideration, the question arises: «Where are the borders between an original text, influences, and plagiarism?»


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Part 2: Eastern Archetypes in the West: Rumi, Ashik-Kerib, Qurriat Al-Ayn


Part 2 Eastern Archetypes in the West: Rumi, Ashik-Kerib, Qurriat Al-Ayn 97 Renditions of Rumi in Europe and North America Simon Sorgenfrei (Sweden) Introduction In a famous essay published in 1977 the French literary theorist and philosopher Roland Barthes declared “the death of the author”, and simultaneously the viva- city and independence of the text. By shifting focus from author to text, the con- structive agency of the reader is advocated. The meaning of a text, according to Barthes, is created when a reader interprets it (Barthes 1977). The Sufi poet Moulana Rumi has been dead for more than 700 years, but his texts are as vibrant and influential as ever. Written in Persian in thirteenth centu- ry Turkey, the poems of Rumi have been read and interpreted as words of spiri- tual wisdom for seven hundred years in what we sometimes carelessly call “the Muslim World”. And for more than a hundred years now, his popularity has been on the rise in Euro-America. This has presented us with a great diversity of interpretations, some of which I will reflect upon in this chapter. Inspired by Barthes’ shift of focus from the authors’ intentions to the reader’s interpretation, as well as by the sociological study of religions bestowing more attention to individual religiosity than to normative or essentialist theological abstractions – I will consider three contemporary interpretations and presentations of the poetry and teachings of Moulana Rumi. The interpretations, all done in a Euro-American context, are made by, respectively, the Chishti...

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