Magical Power of Masks in Ivo Vojnović’s Drama. Maškarate ispod kuplja as Paradigm of the Illusion of Reality

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Antonela Pivac


The  present  paper  analyses  Ivo  Vojnović’s  drama  Maškarate ispod kuplja  by  intending  to emphasize  the  importance  of  carnival  masks  considered  as  instruments  of  liberation  of individuals from social conformism. The protagonists of Vojnović’s  Maškarate show their non-conformist faces and experience freedom only incarnival season. The carnival is described  as  the allegory  of  surreal  and  phantasmagoric  world  displaying  pseudo-realistic situations that represent the deformed face or, rather, the alter of the masked reality. Masks are,  therefore, perceived  as  shields  from  the  frustrating  reality  and  external  influences, whereas life under masks is understood as the perfect model of concealing internal weaknesses and insecurities. The enchanting carnival atmosphere enables the protagonists to openly show the suppressed personality and personal choices. The clear model of searching for the illusion of the truth and the truth of the illusion is also shown, notwithstanding the complicating conditions of the emotional world of the protagonist-symbol who creates false identity provoked and conditioned by external factors. The influence of the Italian grotesque theatre has been reported as well, whereas the similarities have been perceived in particular in the behavioral pattern of the protagonists and perception  of  time and  place  as  metaphysical  categories.  The  determination  of  the  level of  interdependence between  the  Croatian  author  and  the  Italian  role models  has  also  been possible.  The comparison  with  the  Italian  literary  contemporaries  has  been  performed  by examining the intertextual correspondences in particular related to the selection of the „carnivalesque” motives. 


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Pivac, A. (2013). Magical Power of Masks in Ivo Vojnović’s Drama. Maškarate ispod kuplja as Paradigm of the Illusion of Reality. Poznańskie Studia Slawistyczne, (4), 253–264.
Poza tematem: rozprawy i szkice


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