Zagłoba’s Eye Cover Image

Oko Zagłoby
Zagłoba’s Eye

Author(s): Tadeusz Budrewicz
Subject(s): Polish Literature
Published by: Towarzystwo Literackie im. Adama Mickiewicza
Keywords: body; Henryk Sienkiewicz; literary character; tradition

Summary/Abstract: The article discusses the character of Zagłoba from “The Trilogy” by Henryk Sienkiewicz. Beginning with the observations on Zagłoba’s defective vision, the article indicates that the body of a literary character as a mark of individual and social history is a profound semiotic code, which constitutes the writer’s implied polemic with the Polish national-cultural tradition. Zagłoba is similar in his creation to the romantic blind lyre-player who reveals the future to the nation and to individuals. But his role as the romantic prophet ends with the first act of the events in the fictional universe. Zagłoba winks at us with his good eye; in the timeline of the events it serves a communication and social function, but it also deprives his words of their authenticity. Lies and jokes preclude the seriousness of the prophecy, but allow Sienkiewicz to maintain a humorous distance towards the nation’s history.

  • Issue Year: LI/2016
  • Issue No: 1
  • Page Range: 297-314
  • Page Count: 18
  • Language: Polish