Mythological sources of dreams and their symbolic dimension in Wiesław Myśliwski’s literary work
Born in 1932, Wieslaw Myśliwski represents the so-called peasant current in contemporary Polish literature. Popular peasant Polish culture is naturally the privileged setting for Wiesław Myśliwski’s works and each character has his or her specific function in this narrative context. Peasants’ reality is described as remained unchanged for ages and deeply rooted into the ancestral soil of rituals and beliefs which go back to time’s mists. Its mythological and imaginary background has much in common with most of so-called primitive cultures. This direct connection is the means through which Myśliwski’s texts acquire auniversal dimension and automatically become intelligible to almost every reader. The universal mythological layer serves as a frame for asymbolic interpretation of dreams for dreams in Myśliwski’s writings are of capital importance. Not only do they reveal different sides of characters’ personalities but also, what is even more important, point to their cultural belonging. The individual dimension is marked by the narrative concentrating on one character’s story and on the here and now of the modern context with its dynamics of changes. The universal dimension present in the specific conservative peasant background, is particularly visible in dreams. Dreaming links the ritual to the archetype making possible asymbolic interpretation of the text. Each character dreaming in Myśliwski’s novels has an archetypal function. This archetypal functioning becomes effective in a specific, well-defined Polish peasant context. To conclude, we may state that the symbolism of dreams in Wiesław Myśliwski’s literary work transcends contemporary reality because it is set in the peasant culture which connects this symbolism with the oldest cosmology of the human kind.