В борба за нови парадигми: личности и институции в българската етнография и фолклористика (1944-1989)

Беновска-Събкова, Милена (2007) В борба за нови парадигми: личности и институции в българската етнография и фолклористика (1944-1989). Българска етнология (4). pp. 11-30. ISSN 1310-5213

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STRUGGLING FOR NEW PARADIGMS: PERSONALITIES AND INSTITUTIONS IN BULGARIAN ETHNOGRAPHY AND FOLKLORISTIC (1944-1989) Summary Milena Benovska-Sabkova It is the aim of this work is to analyze changes which have taken place in the development of academic ethnography and folkloristic in Bulgaria during socialism, through the prism of the personalities and their impact on the scientific paradigms and institutions. This is accomplished through the outlining of the profiles of five leading personalities of Bulgarian ethnography and folkloristic from the socialist period. The selection of these personalities has been determined not only by the leading position of a certain scholar in the academic hierarchy. What has been taken into consideration is the impact of the personality on the formation of the research paradigms and on the development of the disciplines: theories, opinions, convictions and even delusions. Observations here have been based, most of all, on the analysis of publications and archive sources, but also on information orally conveyed. The social and academic profile of five paradigmatic ethnographers and/or folklorists is outlined, whereby a sketch is provided concerning the context of the political, social and academic changes fitting into which have been their biographies, and their theoretical legacy. Five leading scholars are addressed here in chronological order: Mihail Arnaoudov (1878-1978), Hristo Vakarelski (1896-1979), Peter Dinekov (1910-1992), Stoyan Genchev (1936-1990), and Todor Ivanov Zhivkov (1938-2004). Under socialism, working on ethnography and folkloristic became a profession. When it was established in 1947, the Ethnographic Institute had three research fellows, whereas by the end of the socialist period entire cohort of several dozens of scholars works at the same institute, at the Institute of Folklore, at the universities and colleges, at local museum all over the country. It has been involved in various ways and to a different extent in the “production of knowledge”, but in the final count this has been a fruitful process, yielding result in an impressive flow of publications. Ethnographers and folklorists are social actors and mediators in yet another process – the transformation of rural culture from a living reality into a cultural heritage. Throughout the entire socialist period, however, the discipline developed under the impact of contradictory trends: between the dominating striving for continuity, on the one hand, and the breaches of political pressure and the manifestations of instrumentation, on the other. In this sense these intellectual trajectories have likewise been an expression of the contradictory nature of socialism as a whole. The evolutionist theoretical models have proved long-lasting in Bulgaria under socialism, and particularly instrumental to this has been Marxism with the “petrified” evolutionism, contained in it. Along with this, new research paradigms have been developing, lending a specific appearance to Bulgarian ethnography and folkloristic, although no clear-cut boundary between the two can be delineated. The significant intellectual and human potential, created under socialism, has been a resource for the search for new ways and new theoretical horizons

Item Type:Article
Subjects:Sociology.Anthropology > Ethnology
ID Code:314
Deposited By: Professor Milena Benovska
Deposited On:19 Oct 2009 06:45
Last Modified:06 Feb 2012 12:12

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