Keywords: felicitous myth, felicitous paradigm, caucasian text, caucasian megatext, divided self, A. S. Pushkin, M. Yu. Lermontov, L. N. Tolstoy, A. P. Chekhov
For citation:

Molchanova, D. A. “The Path to Happiness in the ‘Caucasian’ Megatext of Russian Literature (On the Material of A. P. Chekhov’s Short Story ‘Duel’).” Dva veka russkoi klassiki, vol. 5, no. 1, 2023, pp. 102–121. (In Russ.) 

Author: Diana A. Molchanova
Information about the author:

Diana A. Molchanova, PhD Student, Russian State University for the Humanities, Chayanova 15, building 7, 121069 Moscow, Russia.


E–mail: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. 

Received: January 12, 2023
Approved after reviewing: February 24, 2023
Published: March 25, 2023
Issue: 2023 Vol. 5, №1
Department: Russian Literature of the 18th–19th Centuries
Pages: 102–121

UDK: 821.161.1.09"19"


The article focuses on felicitous concepts (interpretations of the essence of happiness and the ways to achieve it) that have taken place in the “caucasian” megatext of Russian literature and have shaped the felicitous paradigm. Several works (“Prisoner of the Caucasus” by A. S. Pushkin, “The Hero of Our Time” by M. Yu. Lermontov, “The Cossacks” by L. N. Tolstoy, “Duel” by A. P. Chekhov) are considered as a polytextual complex of palimpsest type, which reflects the system of characters, complexes of motifs and other essential features of previous texts against the background of the common mythopoetic nature. The article examines the role of the Caucasus as a locus, which has the nature of the “other world,” in the creation of felicitous myths. The semantic presupposition of the Caucasus allows to update the corresponding felicitous meta-plot by including the Caucasus locus in the text. The article considers A. P. Chekhov’s short story “Duel” in the context of the felicitous paradigm, formed on “caucasian” substrate. Summing up the results, it can be concluded that the felicitous paradigm in the “Duel” is transformed, so that the search for happiness coincides with the search for “another self.”


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