"The Captain's Daughter" - the crown of prose Pushkin. This is the last complete work of the writer. Pushkin seeks to recreate the "historical truth." It gave birth to such masterpieces as “Boris Godunov”, “Poltava” or “Arap Peter the Great”. However, the story "The Captain's Daughter" is a completely different level.
“The Captain's Daughter” - a sample of the historical prose of A. S. Pushkin
Sharply increased peasant uprisings have left Pushkin in the side – and so was born the idea to write a piece that responds to the pressing social problem of the time. Pushkin originally wanted to implement the theme of peasant revolt in the "History of the village goryukhino", occupies a special place in "Dubrovsky". But full disclosure was achieved in "the Captain's daughter".
What distinguishes this story from other historical works of Pushkin? The fact is that the previous works of the writer were based on already existing historical works. When writing the story of the Pugachev Uprising, Pushkin combines a brilliant prose writer and conscientious historian. The writer does not just work with archival documents, studies them - he goes to places that he plans to portray in the story. Pushkin visits the Volga region and the Orenburg steppes, becomes familiar with the natural conditions, the peculiarities of people's life, visits the battlefields, talks with living eyewitnesses, and becomes acquainted with legends about Pugachev. The result of this painstaking work is the scientific work of the writer "The Story of Pugachev" (at the request of censorship, the name was changed to "The History of the Pugachev Riot"). Work on the "Captain's daughter" begins after publication. Perhaps that is why Pushkin has turned out so multifaceted rebellious image. Emelyan Pugachev in the story "The Captain's Daughter" is not a sharply negative character, as they tried to portray him to Pushkin.
Pugachev: how he was shown before Pushkin
In the literary tradition before Pushkin, Pugachev was shown from a very negative side. Take, for example, the poems of Sumarokov, where the rebel appears to be a real fiend of evil, a "mad dog", "a monster of nature." In these epithets reflected the fear and all-consuming hatred of the feudal nobility for the leader of the peasant revolt. That is why many critics have not accepted the image of Pugachev, shown by Pushkin in the "History of the Pugachev rebellion." He was either not accepted at all, or the writer was condemned for the absence of certain Byron traditions in him: it was a question of the fact that the image of Pugachev was not romanticized enough and elevated. But Pushkin’s task, as we remember, was “historical truth,” so this character does not have a sharply negative tint and is not idealized. If we talk about the work "The Image of Pugachev in the story" The Captain's Daughter "- the plan will be to analyze the episodes where it appears in the work.
Compositional features of the disclosure of the image of Pugachev
Interesting composition of the novel. The story is being in advanced years Peter Andreevich Grinev. He describes the events of the years 1772-1774, which involved being a 17-year-old boys. The image of Pugachev in the story "captain's daughter" shows up sporadically through four meeting with Petrusha by Grineva. But each episode of the deep reveals to the reader the leader of the rebellion so that he becomes the second main character. The image of Yemelyan Pugachev in the story “The Captain's Daughter” is also revealed through his knowledge of folk songs and legends (let us remember the burlatz song he sings, or the famous folk tale about the eagle and the crow).
Pugachev, the national leader, the image of the national ideal of a just ruler, Pushkin contrasts the mediocre tsarist generals (recall the military councils in Orenburg and the Belgorod Fortress).
Meeting 1: Bunny sheepskin coat
So, as we said above, the image of Pugachev in the story "captain's daughter" is shown through the encounter with another hero, by Grineva. The first meeting of the characters occurs in a snowstorm. Peter and Savelyevich (his teacher from childhood) got lost. Fortunately, he meets a man who brings to postalone yard. It is noteworthy that at the first meeting we don't know what it Pugachev. It turns out that the reader looks at it from the side, sees in a natural setting. What notices Petrushka? Grineva striking "his sharpness and subtlety of mind." The way to postalone court counselor (Pugachev) finds the stars and the smell of smoke. The reader also catches the eye good health Pugacheva: in the dead of winter, he is on the snow-covered steppe in the small armyachishko.
In gratitude, Petrusha Pugachev receives a glass of wine, half a pint of vodka and a bunny sheepskin coat. “I will not forget forever,” says Emelyan and remains true to his words until the end of the story.
It is impossible not to draw attention to the excellent knowledge of Pugachev allegorical language, knowledge of folk sayings. So covertly, it communicates with the innkeeper about the formation of troops Yaik Cossacks for participation in the peasant war of 1772.
Meeting 2: “Execute so punish, pardon so pardon”
The second meeting of the characters occurs after the capture by the rebels of the Belgorod fortress. Here the reader is presented a completely different Pugachev. He enters the fortress on horseback, in a bright caftan. Declaring himself Emperor, he demands obedience and oath. Those who disobey – kills without mercy. The same fate awaits Pyotr Grinev. But what do we see? Pugachev favors Petrusha, thereby violating his principle. In order not to fall in the eyes of others, the rebel goes to the trick, shows kindness and delicacy. He justifies Petrusha who refused to take the oath by saying that "his nobleness had become stupid with mercy." Pugachev understands perfectly well that Petrusha will never swear allegiance to him and will still fight against it. Nevertheless, he lets him go, giving a horse, a fur coat and a half-quart of money.
We learn from Yaik Cossacks what he is - Pugachev. Again, his health is emphasized: good appetite and too hot steam.
At the military council, the image of Pugachev in the story "The Captain's Daughter" is revealed from a new perspective: with his Cossacks he behaves as an equal, he "was not given any particular preference."
Meeting 3: “Who dares to offend an orphan”
The third meeting takes place after the second captivity of Pyotr Grinev. Here Pugachev (image) is revealed even deeper. The captain's daughter, Masha, left orphaned, was imprisoned in the Belogorsk fortress. Peter goes there to protect her. He explains these circumstances to Pugachev. To which Emelyan is indignant, with his eyes flashing with anger, he demands to name the offender. “He will find out what it is like for me to be stern and offend the people,” says Pugachev. Yemelyan’s companions demand that Petrusha be hanged, but Pugachev once again lets him go, “remembering a glass of wine and a bunny sheepskin coat.”
During the same meeting, Pugachev tells Grinev an old Kalmyk tale about an eagle and a crow. Its essence is that a moment of free bright life is much better than a miserable existence. The tale becomes prophetic, as well as the burlatskaya song, which Emelyan sings with his companions. It is noteworthy that the guardman from the squad of Dubrovsky sings the same song in the novel of the same name.
Meeting 4: penalty
The last, fourth meeting of the Impostor and Grineva happens on the last pages of the novel. Peter is among the witnesses to the execution of Pugachev. In the latest look at Yemelyan Grineva no mercy, prayers of compassion and sympathy, on the contrary, Pugachev bold and proud. It is no coincidence that this is the image of Pugachev in Pushkin’s novel “The Captain's Daughter”, or rather, his severed bloody head. By this, the writer wanted to show that Emelyan the rebel is far from a romantic hero: he is real.
Making the main conclusions, let's say that the image of Pugachev in the story "The Captain's Daughter" is ambiguous.
He is shown in all his socio-historical reality: on the one hand, he does not tolerate pity for his class enemies, but on the other he is fair (advocates for the weak and disadvantaged), knows how to remember and appreciate the good (his attitude towards Grinev).
Precisely such Pugachev remained in the memory of the people. Pushkin emphasizes the courage and intelligence of Pugachev - qualities that he himself valued among the Russian people, considered unique.