The article deals with interrelations between the view of the world of the Spanish ethnos and an archetype of the Spanish literature – madness. It is shown that the view of the world of each ethnos consists of constant and variable elements. Constant elements are caused by historical development of the nation and remain throughout all existence of ethnos which develops during the centuries relevant mechanisms of protection – real or ritual actions. The literature can be considered as one of the ritual mechanism of protection against external threats.

The relevance of the research is caused by lack of analysis of a phenomenon of madness in Spanish culture. In the article it is shown that historical development of the Spanish ethnos has caused the emergence of such characteristic sign as aggression. This one was generated by fight against the Arabs, it was strengthened by the conquest of Latin America, and finally it was transformed to an autoaggression. This circumstance leads to suppression of own feelings and reason, this characteristic sign of national character has led to appearance of numerous madmen in the Spanish society. This circumstance has found the reflection in one of the most known images in the Spanish literature – Don Quixote’s image.

The periods of efflorescence of art and literature of Spain fell on years of the long grave economic crises: on the end of the 17th and the end of the 19th centuries. These years the Spanish people have used the checked mechanisms of psychological protection: they prefer the irrational and chimerical reality to real life. These years are ones of efflorescence of baroque and surrealism with their cult of associations, difficult metaphors, aggressive penetration in unconscious, the deleting of borders between the worlds. Madness as a result of an autoaggression and the sleep of reason become the archetypes of Spanish culture and literature defining her identity.

About the authors

L. G. Khoreva

Russian State University for the Humanities

Author for correspondence.
ORCID iD: 0000-0002-7045-4310

Candidate of Philological Sciences, assisstant professor of the Department of Roman Philology


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