S-Space College of Humanities (인문대학) Institute for Russian, East European & Eurasian Studies (러시아문화권연구소) 러시아연구 (Russian Studies) 러시아연구 Volume 01/02 (1992)
올례샤의 「질투」에 나타난 서술자와 시점의 문제
The Problem of the Narrator and the Point of View in Ju. Olesas Zavist
- Issue Date
- 서울대학교 러시아연구소
- 러시아연구, Vol.1, pp. 51-80
- The present study is intended to focus on the multiplication of the narrator and the interrelations of the various points of view in Ju. Olesa's " Zavist'" The first part of "Zavist"' is a typical icherzählung and the narrator Kavalerov is at the same time one of the characters within the novel's narrative universe. Since he is not an omniscient narrator and belongs to the world of other characters, he is not permitted to penetrate the consciousness of the latter. In other words, he is unable to describe a given persona from the internal point of view on the psychological plane. However, Kavalerov often assumes the persona's internal point of view and creates the impression that his narration is carried out by some invisible omniscient narrator. This kind of non-concurrence between the narrator and the point of view is also found on the spatiotemporal plane of the novel. That is, Kavalerov steps over the boundary between the first person narrator and the omniscient third person narrator by freely describing the events happening in the spatio-temporal world where he is not present.
The third person narrator's voice concealed in Kavalerov's narration makes the latter an "unreliable narrator" and thus destroys any assumption that Kavalerov may be the carrier of the authorial point of view on the ideological plane. The unreliable position he assumes as a narrator of the given narrative is, however, offset by his unique perception and language on the level of statement. Kavalerov sees and expresses the world in such a way that everything is altered, transformed, and decomposed through his idiosyncratic perception. He looks the surrounding world from a vantage point which permits the destruction of the optical, geometrical, and natural laws and chooses a special language of metaphor to verbalize his own vision. Only in this respect does he become a true mediator of the author whose main concern is always directed toward the artistic vision and the way of its expression.
In the second part of the novel, icherzähler is replaced by the third person narrator. Being omniscient, the third person narrator describes the personae including Kavalerov from their internal point of view without losing reliability. Through the third person narrator's commentary the personae and the events are reevaluated and the ideological neutrality of the authorial position is reinforced. However, on the plane of phraseology, the third person narrator functions as Kavalerov's double. The perception and the language sui generis Kavalerovian are refracted in his narration and consequently the boundary line between the two gets blurred.
The shift from one narrator to another and the non-concurrence between the narrator and the point of view make the structure of " Zavist'" enormously complicated. The function and significance of this complicated narrative structure can be summarized in two respects. First, what Olesa intends in this novel is not to evaluate any ideological view but to investigate the nature of the artistic vision. Second, Olesa extends the unique vision of the artist to the act of narrating itself. That is, he tries to view the world and literature from a new angle by de-conventionalizing the norms of narration.