FORUM FOR ANTHROPOLOGY AND CULTUREANTROPOLOGICHESKIJ FORUM
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Antropologicheskij forum, 2023, no. 56
Institute of Slavic Studies, RussianAcademy of Sciences
Abstract: The analysis of oral folk interpretations of dreams and dream books lets us determine the range of symbolic meanings for each of the two elements—fire and water. This range represents a semantic paradigmatic structure—an area with a certain symbolism. In a certain sense it resembles what is called a lexical nest or a semantic field in linguistics. The interaction between the symbolism of fire and the symbolism of water is in their partial imposing on each other and is distributed crosswise: dreams about water can get fiery symbolism and vice versa, the three varieties of earthly, heavenly and human symbolism. For example, swamp may be dreamt of to tears and sunny weather; fish to tears, rain and fever; the sun to rain, clear weather and fire; flames and fire to rain and sunny weather. The balance of water and fire symbolism, their mutual influence (its interaction with the symbolism of cold/hot) up to their unification, mixture, and neutralization is widely represented in a language and culture—in folklore texts, ritual and magical actions and beliefs, in an author’s poetry, literature, fine arts and psychoanalysis. The mechanisms of such symbolic correlation and interaction are constantly reproduced. All this makes it possible to reveal universal cultural senses and highlight the peculiarities of the structure of the symbolic language of culture.
Keywords: dream interpretations, water, fire, symbol paradigms, semantic field, symbolic language of culture.
To cite: Gura A., ‘Voda i ogon v slavyanskoy simvolike snovideniy i v simvolicheskom yazyke kultury’ [Water and Fire in the Slavonic Symbolism of Dreams and the Symbolic Language of Culture], Antropologicheskij forum, 2023, no. 56, pp. 25–61.
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