Herzens syndrome

In 1847, Alexander Herzen emigrated from Russia, because he believed his homeland focus of evil, a sort of "climax" of which he had seen in the execution of five participants in the uprising on December 14. He could not know that from 1775 (the suppression of the Pugachev rebellion and the execution of six of its leaders), and until 1847 the first — that is nearly 75 years old — was punishment Decembristsonlypenalty in Russia. Yet he refused to live in a country where this would unheard of cruelty.

However, less than one and a half years after the departure of the blessed Herzen Europe, and directly in front of him were for only three days, shoteleven thousandMembers of the Paris insurrection of June 1848. At first the poor Herzen almost frantic with terror, and wrote to his friends in Moscow completely "unacceptable" words: "God grant that took Russian Paris, it's time to end this stupid Europe ..!" Realizing that his rabid Westernist friends will be extremely outraged by such a wish, he threw them accusation: "You want to France and Europe as opposed to Russia as Christians like paradise — as opposed to the ground … I am ashamed and blush for France …
What's worse than just that none of the French are not offended by what is being done … "

This last is most important: Herzen "ashamed", and the French — not at all. But Herzen Russian still remains: his breath after the shock of 1848, eight years later, he began publishing in London Almanac "Polar Star" on the cover is placed silhouettes of five martyrs of the Decembrists — how unforgiving reproach Russia. And Europe "agreed" with Herzen: the mass of published works there Decembrists penalty qualifies as an expression of unprecedented cruelty inherent in Russia is …

Kozhinov Vadim Valepyanovich
from the book: History of Russia and the Russian Word. The modern view

Excerpts from letters Herzen

Pskov … dichee suburban farmer, and he does not seem to hit the right or the left foot on the path that leads from the patriarchal to the civilian development — a path that is called progress, education, the story of which is called history. He lives near the dilapidated loopholes and does not know anything about them … I doubt whether he had heard about the siege of Pskov … Events of the past century and a half have passed over his head, not even to excite curiosity. Generation in two to three peasant perestroivaet their log houses, completely rotting, aging them, passes his meadow in the hands of the son, grandson, lie down, two, three on the warm stove, then blends into the frozen ground, and sometimes vspomyanut his children or grandchildren buckwheat pancakes to the parent on Saturday, with a new revision would exclude his name from among the living, then turn gray and grandchildren, and do not be compulsory military service, they would just as their ancestors knew nothing about what was happening in St. Petersburg, Russia .

The Frenchman … loves money to feverish, convulsive desire to acquire them, and he is absolutely right: no money in Paris, you can live less than somewhere with no money at all is not a free man, except in Australia. It's time to stop ranting about the greed of the poor, it is time to forgive that hungry hungry, that a poor work because of money, because of "filthy lucre" … You do not like money? However, Well — you must admit, a little bit — the money is a good thing, and I love them very much. The point is not to hate money, but the fact that a decent man does not subordinate to them all that he has in his chest, not all corrupt. French servant will be tireless, will run for three, but will not sell any of its pleasures, nor some comfort in life, or the right to reason, nor a point d'honneur {esteem (French). —Ed.}; Make demands, he will play, but do not make rude, however, no one here is rude to the servants. Porter will not pull the lace over rough cry cordon! {Open to! (French). —Ed.} — He certainly ought s'il vous plait {please (French). —Ed.} To reach such cases the police, and the police, charged with the duty of the whole night janitor unlocked the door, he added tip: lace politely request. About vain Gauls!

French servant, cute in his absence of logic, wants to serve as a person (ie, in the literal sense, we have the word "man" is a pun, but I'm serious). He's not cheating on you his affection, and with a carefree candor says he is out of money and that if he had other means, he would have left you tomorrow, he has a soul until dry and full of selfishness, that he can not indulge in love stranger fifty francs a month. The local servants incredibly dexterous and courteous as awnings, this same courtesy may seem offensive, her tone puts you on a par with them, and they are polite, but do not like or stand at attention, no jump with fright when you walk by, and in fact it's kind of rude. Sometimes they can be very funny, chef who takes from me, looking for a buffet, serves savory food, clean rooms, clean clothes — consequently, neleniv, as you see, but in the evenings, from 8:00 to 10, reading magazines in the near-café, and it is conditio sine qua non {precondition (Latin.) —Ed.}.

Passion … a joke, a gaiety, a pun is one of the essential elements of French and beautiful nature, it corresponds to the vaudeville stage. Vaudeville — the same popular product of the French, the Germans as transcendental idealism.

But you know addicted people do not really educated to all indecent, for which only the greasy sharply, just cynical funny. Bourgeois, a strict censor in his house, loves to release a full and fun, get a hint of blush ambiguous girlfriend, and then he goes — he loves and povolochitsya, generally secretly loves debauch, debauch such that it can never put a face to face with his denunciation of conscience in the three-cornered hat, called the police minister, he dissolute up to and including articles of the code of civil misconduct. On stage, all this is reflected, as expected, vaudeville (nine out of ten) has no basis in the light gaiety, not sparkling jokes joke, and sebaceous hints. Thus, as in classical tragedy, afraid to shake the nerves, killed at the scene, as in many plays of a new school you are forced to believe in the wings … not murder, do not — quite the opposite. I can not stand the Puritan austerity, I love to watch and cancan fierce and desperate polka, but you will, there is something sad and humiliating spectacle of a twenty-room, in which people crammed packed with six in the evening in order to admire stupid to twelve plays , greasy farces, and that every evening. Predilection for ambiguity and obscene spoil the great stage talent, artists, carried away by the thunder of applause (which is very stingy) so spoiled that they each word, each movement are able to give something … something kantaridnoe. Neither Dezhaze nor Levassor not taken this disadvantage.

The present position of France … — all unhappy, except for note-bourgeoisie, and even that is afraid to look forward. The more dissatisfied, known to many than to fix and how — almost no one, not even the socialists, people far ideal, barely rising above the road.

Neither the magazine nor the parliamentary opposition are not aware of any true sense of malaise, no real medicine, because of this it remains in constant minority, it is only true living feeling of indignation, and in this she was right: the mind of evil is necessary in order to sooner or late to get rid of him.

The accusation most often-repeated and perfectly true is that for some time the material interests of all other suppressed, that the ideas, words that shook so recently and masses of people, forcing them to leave the house, a family, to take up arms and go to defend their shrines and the overthrow of hostile heroes — lost its magnetic force and repeated now out of habit, out of courtesy, as a vocation of Olympus and music by poets or as the word "God" in the deists.

Instead of "noble" ideas and "lofty" goals lever, resulting in the movement of all — money. Where there was a discussion about the inalienable rights of man, of public policy, the Patriot — are now engaged in a political economy.

By the fall became insufferable in Paris, I could not cope with the ugly moral degradation that surrounded me, I felt that my soul is taken that self-denial, that cold and that "all the same", which is entered as lost hopes, a break with reality, contempt for the present, I just callous and sometimes resentment felt by young and old forces of animation.

Death in literature, in the theater of death, the death of the policy, the death of the grandstand, the walking dead Gizo on the one hand and sophomoric gray opposition — on the other — it's awful! There's somewhere at the bottom, far heard sometimes violent cries, as though they were leaving the mighty and healthy breasts, but outside of Paris represented ostynuvshy crater turned into mud and slush. France recovers, as I said in my last letter, without radical means of celestial fire and sea water, but I did not want to be a nurse at her bedside as she breaks down in a fit of madness, restrained his hands dirty and cynical barbers and hospital nurses. — "In Italy, to Italy!" I would like to rest, like the sea, the warm air, lush greenery and the people — not so jaded, not survivors of heart.

On the road … nothing to tell. Ride in France with post-horses boring: just machine, no talking, no dispute, no station keepers, no books, no Podorojniy. Lay in an instant, the horses are everywhere, the highway — as a tablecloth, a postman jumping from station to station — all the poetry of our roads do not exist.

One offends the eye and Slavic soul aches — high stone fence, topped with broken glass, separated by gardens, vegetable gardens, and sometimes even the field, they represent a perpetuation of the exclusive possession, some cheeky impudence of property rights, and for the poor road dust, tough and abusive wall, reminding him constantly that he is a beggar, that he does not even view into the distance. You can not imagine how the sullen character fields and give the land of the walls, the trees, as prisoners are looking towards them through, charming landscapes spoiled. Russian village in Europe is not. The meaning of the rural communes in Europe — only the police, what do these scattered houses, ogorozhivayuschimisya from each other? at all of them special, they are connected only by the common mezhoy, which may be common to the hungry workers, which provides commune le droit de glaner {right to glean after the harvest (French). —Ed.} And wealthy householders? Hail, gentlemen, Russian village — its great future.

Agree once and for all, that the republic — the imminent beginning of the liberation of peoples, this is the first step, without whichcan not besecond. How would the monarchy was not well arranged, it already limits the development was to be when it comes to the country, its no one compares with the monarchy, and she has over the monarchy has the advantage that it must have an element of movement, change and, consequently, hope. Republic just decently than monarchy power in it, being tyrannical, mysterious anointing loses, loses the intoxicating nature of supreme power, the king's majesty, which blunts the human valor, dull mind. Pushing aside any comparison with the monarchy as humiliating for the country and for human dignity, but we need to know what is in itself the word "republic" is extremely vague and stringy, saying "Republic," we still have not said anything other than denial of hereditary power and recognitionsomepeople's participation in public affairs.

People do not … then he must, that we can say what we want to say, our words — the answers, scaffolding, razrabotyvanie concepts, insult, confession, criticism, doubt. The people barely know ghosts, against whom we are fighting, it is not our fight, it is not the anger. A lot of people are suffering, it is hard living, he hates more passionately and realize that soon will change, but he's not waiting for priugotovlennyh works, andrevelationthat closed walks in his soul, he is not waiting for the books, and the apostles, the people who have faith, will, power of persuasion and match together — people never broke with him — people are not coming out of it, but acting in him and with him, with a frank, nepotryasaemoy faith and devotion does not entertain. Anyone who feels that he is so close to the people, so free from the artificial environment of civilization and as revised and defeated her, who before he graduated with him, that he is a single action, and who has attained the integrity and unity of which we speak, that belongs speech, let him speak to the people, but he will certainly say — we bow down before him.

Do you feel anything like that in your chest? I doubt it. We are together and the corpse killer disease and dissector of the old world — this is our calling. I have long thought that it is possible, at least in person to start a new life, to retreat to, withdraw from the market flea market. It is impossible — whether at least one person near you, whom you have not broken all ties, through his gates of the old world, the vicious and dissolute, wicked and treacherous. We are like that of a slave in the French colonies, which tells Schoelcher, Mr punishment for tied tightly to the corpse they killed an ox, and so left to die.

The death of the world obsolete and grab us, you can not escape, our damaged lungs can not breathe different air than the bad. We involve him in imminent death, it is legal, it is necessary, we feel that we will soon have no need, but disappearing with it, but feeling a fatal necessity, by contacting us, we impose it still beats most evil and dying in the destruction and chaos , will gladly welcome a new world — not ours — our "Dying salute you, Caesar!" *

… The fact that we are in Europe with its own ideal and faith in him. We know Europe bookish, literary, in her formal attire for the purified, distilled distraction, floated by and spaced thoughts on occupying the top layer of life, because of exceptional events in which she did not like herself.

All this makes a bright quarter of European life. Life is dark three-quarters can not be seen from a distance, close it is always visible. Between the reality that rises to the ideal, and that which was lost in the dirt streets, between the goal of political and literary aspirations, and to market and home activities as much difference as between all the peoples of the Christian life and the teachings of the Gospel. One — a word more — business, one — the desire, the other — life, one constantly saysMe,more rarely disclosed and remains in the shadows, in the contemplation of one's mind, the other — profit.

Of course, the life of this involuntary. He has developed feasibly as he could from the historical data simmering for centuries, took a all the dirt, all kinds of hereditary diseases, there were deposits of all nations. Rows of people lived and died exhausted in the stream of Western history, which leads them along the bones and corpses, their thoughts and dreams. They are worn on this deep sea, covering its surface — as once the spirit of God was hovering over the waters. But water is not separated. A new world can only create out of chaos. The old world is still strong, like the other, the other used to it. Burden of this condition Westerner privyknuvshy to contradictions of life, not so much feels like a Russian.

And it's not just because Russian — outsider, but precisely because he at the same timehis own.An outsider looks at the characteristics of the country with curiosity, marks them with the indifference of others, so look Bou Maza to Paris from his home on the Champs-Elysees *, so look for a European China.

Russian, on the contrary, the passionate spectator, he offended in his love, his hope, he feels that he was deceived, he hates the way hate jealous of the abundance of love and trust.

Bedouins have their soil, their own tent, he has his own life, he returned to him, he rested in it. The Jews — this primordial exile, this antediluvian immigrant — is the ark in which reposes his faith in whose name he is reconciled to his way of life.

Russian poorer Bedouin poorer Jew — he has nothing on what he could come to terms that make him happy.

Read the letter in full

See also Historical Ivan the Terrible — a victim of its own rukopozhatnoy intellectuals and kindness

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