Mythical Animals in the Literature of Young Poland

The paper concerns word co-occurrence in a Young Poland corpus. Mythical themes related to nature, and animals in particular, will be presented in the context of F. Nietzsche’s Thus spake Zarathustra. Word associations, shown on diagrams, will also be compared to symbolism found in Greek or Iranian mythologies, one of the fin-de-siècle generation’s sources of inspiration. The main animals here will be the eagle and the snake, Zarathustra’s companions in Nietzsche’s work, which can symbolize the solar and the chthonic. Particularly the role of the snake is ambiguous, somewhat revolutionary against the traditional animal symbolism of the previous centuries. Further on, the symbolism of landscape will be described as one frequently reflecting the feelings and thoughts of Zarathustra, or those of a Young Poland protagonist.

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