Scientific journal
European Journal of Natural History
ISSN 2073-4972


Rafiyeva A.I. 1
1 Sumgait State University
The article is clarifying interesting scientific results of realism’s history and typology which is the main creative method of Azerbaijani literature in the past two centuries. It should be noted that an artistic expression of this method in Azerbaijani literature has got a specific character. Despite of similarities with realism in the European and Russian literatures, the typological features of national realism, which based on certain traditions, is a matter of interest as well. The classification of realism in the 70th of 20th century was a subject of discussions during the conferences had been held in Baku (in 1975), in Almaty (in 1975), in Kazan (in 1978). During these conferences has been attempted to generalize the historical experience of realism in the literature of the different Turkish nations. In this respect, the author paid special attention to conference on subject of “The problem of realism in the literature of Soviet Eastern Nations” which had been held in Baku, 1972.
literary criticism
artistic-esthetic thought
public artistic environment
subject of investigation
1. Talibzade K.A. Personalities of masters. – B.: Yazici, 1978. – 246 p.
2. Garayev Y.V. Realism: mastership and truth. – Baku: Elm, 1980. – 378 p.
3. Garayev Y.V. Distinguished poems. 5 tomes, 3rd book. – Baku: Elm, 2015. – 345 p.
4. Mustafayev M.M. Artistic heritage of literature study in 19th century. – Baku: Xazar University, 2010. – 255 p.
5. Mammadov Kh. Azerbaijani literature in 19th century. – Baku: GGS, 2006. – 212 p.
6. Nikolayev P.A.Realism as the artistic method. – Moscow: Edition of Moscow University, 1975. – 280 p.

Realism as the artistic creative method has taken significant positions in the world and European literature in the last two centuries. To lean on objective aspects of the real manner and the certain system of the shapes has strengthened the attitude of realism in the last centuries. The realism has tightened its positions in Azerbaijani literature especially since 19th century. Entering into the evolution stage by the creative of A. Bakixanov, I. Gutgashinli, M.Sh. Vazeh, our enlightening and realist literature is reaching its peak of perfection with the artistic heritage of M.F. Akhunzade, N. Vazirov, A. Hagversiyev, N. Narimanov in the second part of 20th century. Realism, by the creation of its own traditions, kept up its existence, improved its formation and created its own style and the system of the shapes. The creation of national realism and its development history was always a subject of the investigation of literary critics. Such a systematical approach to realism is stipulated with the sensitive attitude, specific characters of the whole stage of national literary historic process, rich creative behavior, and literary esthetic researches.

We dare say that the history and typology of realism that formulates the main creative method of our literature in the two centuries is bringing about interesting scientific results. Because of that this creative, method has got its own specific character and literary expression in Azerbaijani literature. Despite of the certain similarities Akhunzade and mutual features of national realism with the realism of European and Russian literature, its own typological and traditional features are the matter of interest as well. It should be noted that the first systematical traditional idea and thoughts about Azerbaijani realism had been said by M.F. Akhunzade which is the founder of the conception on national enlightening realist critics. The researcher clarifies that the matter of realism is approximately a basis of Akhunzade’s art theory and contain most of the different subjects. The research of artistic and esthetic heritage proves that he was a realist and enlightener both in artistic creative and by his artistic vision. He stipulated the principles of that method on the basis of the unique conception (1, 60).

Mr. M.F. Akhunzade focused and clarified in his critical articles the unity of form and content in the artistic literature, typology of realism, realities of life and literature, the system of shapes in realism and the problems between author and literary study. The realism has not lost the interest in its essence and artistic expression in the different literatures for further artistic stages. The regional features of national literatures, mutual and typological qualities of realism have always been in the center of the focus in critic and literature study in the period of Soviet Union. Because of that, as t the only creative method during soviet, the life of socialist realism and its influence in its in the different literatures was under unknown conditions, and therefore the essence, specification and typology of the realism in the soviet critic and literature study was the matter of discussions and series of scientific conferences and meetings had been held accordingly. The critics of Azerbaijan such as A. Nazim, A. Hajiyev, Y. Garayev widely explained in their works the problems of literature study such as a creation, evolution and classification of the national realism. Namely, YasharGaryev’s creative in this field should be especially underlined. The researcher, which is focusing on typological classification of the realism, attempts herein to determine one unique principle for those classifications. It was made as the conclusion that any typological classification is not based on aspect of poor outlook but certain esthetic principles. It is impossible to determine the stage of national realism without it. So, the critic denied the advantage of an outlook of the masters which are Marxist esthetics and he has preferred conceptual esthetic values instead of the political and ideological principles while approving of any creative method. On the other hand, anticipating the continuation of the realism relations in the future and transformation of it into the new attitude, the critic has written as follows: “Indeed, it is impossible to identify the normative, standard and stereotype meaning of the realism cause of its new features that come out each time and century”. But, in any cases the features that express the certain history and the description of life in terms of dialectic development are always considered as the structure of its essence. The history of realism considers the character of thinking, public’s approve of the object, psychological analysis, making an event as historical perspective and the public dialectic relation between an individual and condition. Modern scientific and theoretical idea appears in order to find out the realism namely in the style of characters, conflict, language, expression, total theoretical esthetic principles and finally in the unique system of them (2, 21–22).

The literary critics of Western Europe and theorists of Marxism has an ideological and political disputes namely in this field along the years. If the esthetics of Marxism mostly has been preferred a realist artistic thought in the literary historic process, so the specialists of Western Europe literature have been denying an artistic conception of the socialist realism that comes over the other types of literary creative. Such kind of disputes among the different political systems already entered the stage of humanitarian science, namely the stage of artistic thought.

The theorists of Marxism have always highly welcomed the historic achievement, traditions and artistic personalities of realism. Meanwhile, they denied the description of the different creative methods and evaluated the reflection theory of Lenin and Marxist training about party membership of the literature as a wall without base. An Austrian literary critic Mr. Ernest Fischer took more radical position, he did not like the position of those that to call a product of artistic thought as “a progressive”, “a reactionary” and said: “the writer should take an opposite position against society and political regime, and always must tell the truth”. When an ideology of life’s reality is under the dislodging, the original artistic works come out then. Because of it, the soviet literary critics had many scientific disputes and discussions around the problems of realism and called a series of conferences accordingly. The history, theory and typological features became the general subjects of the discussion.

Complex and wide investigation of the realism problems within range of unique artistic and esthetic principles began since 70th of 20th century in all-Union arena. A series of scientific sessions and conferences had been held in 60–70th in accordance with these problems and many investigation works were appeared during that period.

Until that time a realism, namely a historic evolution and the specification of world literature in Marxist esthetic, the forms of appearance in the national literature and an individual identity of realism in the artistic heritage of the different writers more and less were investigated. Since that time the investigations in this field became wider so that the problems demanded a theoretical and systematical scientific approach of literary study. Thus, in 1970, the Tatar literary critic Mr. I. Nurullin suggested in the magazine “Voprosyliteratury” (№ 4) to investigate the creation and typology of the realism in the literature of Eastern nations by the context of all-Turkish literature and its theoretical thought. Mr. I Nurillin said the following interesting and disputable opinions about the historic formation of realism in the territories of Middle Asia, Caucasus and other regions that inhabited by the Turkish nations: “Mr. Gasimzade claims the creation of the critical realism in literature of Azerbaijan and even related it to the first part of 19th century.” It is impossible to doubt his rightness because he dines the conception that the bases of feudal and serfdom relations are not under the critic in the literature of that period (3, 22).

Mr. YasharGarayevrebuted this opinion of I. Nurullin in the book “Realism: art and truth” for the reason that this critical evaluation does not cover all achievement of realism investigations in Azerbaijani literature in the period that article had been written. Whereas, it is possible to examine the general principles of the conception and “enlightening realism” subject supported by the author since 1968 in the literature study of Azerbaijan as well (3, 22).

These opinions of I. Nurillincan can be rebutted that he takes as the main aspect the criticizing of the bases of feudal serfdom relations in order to determine and compare the realism, and he does not take into account the role of artistic technologies and national artistic systems in this process.

It is clear that one of the problems that caused of serous activity of the soviet literature study was realism. It is not accidental that since 60th many conferences and scientific works have been dedicated to this problem.

The stages’ classification of realism had been discussed widely in the conferences held in Baku (1972), In Tashkent (1975), in Almaty (1975), and in Kazan (1978) during the 70th of 20th century, and the historic experience of realism has been generalized in the literature of the different Turkish nations. In this respect, the conference held in Baku in 1972 which was dedicated to the “problem of realism in literature of Soviet Eastern Nations” should especially underlined and to be discussed. Despite that the development tendency of realism had the sufficient investigations by the western and Russian literature, meanwhile without taking into account the conference held in 1969, some aspects of this matter left apart of the investigations in the literatures of eastern nations thetypological features of realism have not been a subject of the discussions in the literature of soviet eastern nations.

If the first reason for the increased attention to the several scientific and theoretical issues of our literature is an exemption of the artistic thought product out of the political and ideological groups, so the second one is a will of modern approach to the classic artistic heritage out of the political and ideological groups, so the second one is a will of modern approach to the classic artistic heritage by the results of the increased esthetic and educational role of artistic literature in the modern period. Becoming of artistic literature as a strongest factor for the formation of human consciousness in terms of art, an elimination of the literature study science based on Marxist and Leninist methodology and the opportunities that successfully settle the theoretical issues of art and literature, these all require a formation of a new vision into the history of realism.

The investigation of realism has been conducted in the different directions which is one of the main issues of the literature. So far, the development way of realism in the world literature, its relation to the national literature, the individual expression forms of realism in the creative of the different writers and etc. had been studied in the result of those investigations. However, as the investigations are becoming wider, so the new issues regarding the history and the theory of realism come out. And the settlement of them is one of the actual issues of modern literatures. So far, the development way of realism in the European literature has been a main direction of investigations. But, realism in the Eastern literature was out of investigations until 60–80th. Since 50th some steps had been made towards the scientific determination of the issue and the new works had been produced in the literature of eastern nations that related to the features and development way of the realism.

The Eastern literature has been considered as a collection of the different literatures of the different nations by the ancient history that defer from each other in terms of the historic condition and the national character. The development way of realism in these literatures had a specific way unlike of European ones. However, they have not been isolated out of the literary process worldwide. Unambiguously, the all literary critics have accepted an idea that European literatures have got an influence on Eastern literatures and vise versa. Therefore, while study of the global realism is important to take into account an artistic experience of Eastern literatures. It is impossible to determine the historic experience of realism without it.

During the Soviet Union an issue of realism in the Eastern literatures had been considered and understood as the realism in literatures of Soviet Eastern nations. The common features of literatures of Soviet Eastern nations make the common and mutual peculiarities as a priority in order to settle this issue. The literatures of Soviet nations such as Uzbek, Kazakhs, Azerbaijanis, Turkmen, Tatars, Kirgiz, Bashkir and etc. are including the similar and common features in terms of public, economic and cultural life. The investigation and study of them allows to identify several objective laws in the development of realism.

The Scientific Board “the objective laws of world literature” under ANAS and Institute of Literature after Nizami had held a scientific conference in October of 1972 in order to investigate the creation process of realism in the literature of Turkish soviet nations, to identify the objective laws in development of realism and to determine their typical and similar features. The famous literary critics from Moscow, Tashkent, Almaty, Ashgabat, Dushanbe, Kazan, Ufa and Tbilisi took part in this conference as well.

The various discussions on Eastern realism had been held during 1957–1962 years. The collection of materials of those events had been published in 1964 in Moscow under the name of “the development problems of realism of the Eastern literature”. The subject of discussions and materials accordingly had been dedicated to the realism in the literature of foreign eastern countries. Since the conference in 1969 in Baku which was about the realism in the literature of Azerbaijan, the interest in realism and theoretical level of the conducted investigations had been increased, and many articles and books were produced accordingly. The all-Union conference on “problems of realism in the literature of Soviet Eastern nations” held in Baku brought about the completion of all related events under the implementation, generalization of the different idea and opinions, idenfication of future perspectives in this field.

Making an opening speech in this conference the vise-president of SSR AS Mr. M.A. Dadashov has pointed that the nations of Eastern Soviet have got a rich and an ancient literature. The speaker said: despite of the several interesting works produced in the recent years in accordance with the realism of those literatures, the investigations are not sufficient in that important field. It is time to determine the meaning of the conceptions such as “Realism” and “Romatism” and meanwhile to eliminate the tangle ideas about them. The proportionality of realism with romantic and other creative methods, typology of realism’s national forms, impact of mutual relations of literatures on realism and the investigations of the issues regarding the style and genre of realist literature should be under the special attention. It would be better if one of the upcoming conferences to be dedicated to the history of socialist realism and theoretical problems in the literatures of Soviet eastern nations”. The trends of class positions in the artistic literature once again appeared in this conference which demonstrated itself along the years in the Soviet literature study. Thus, the doctor of philological sciences Mr. A. Hajiyev shares on the typology problems of realism in the soviet eastern literature he noted that the truthfulness is unlike of realism and realistic truth has got its own features. The speaker noted that there are three stages of type of historic realistic creative and determined them as follows: feudal-democratic realism (that subject brought about hot debates during the conference), bourgeois – democratic realism and socialist realism. Due to the speaker the feudal-democratic realism became larger in the Central Asia and mostly used in the satirical poem. To his mind, an idea direction of realism of 19–20th century had been an enlightening and critical one from beginning to the end. And it would be better to call this period as “bourgeois democratic realism”.

Mr. A. Hajiyev’s approach to realism in terms of classification in our literaturehad been evaluated as follows: “It is important to accept these reforms which became a subject of the debates for the reason that an author approaches to the theoretical system of realism from the classification point of view and attempts to explain the natural and objective historical way of artistic process from the position of political and ideological principles of Marxist esthetics.” No doubt, because of it, the creative, namely the classification method of Hajiyev had been criticized and denied by our literature study for further decades. The feature out of his opinions that impossible to accept is the identification of the artistic creative method, romanticism and realism with the artistic creative style, satiric and literary kind, with lyrics. Meanwhile, he got wrong a method with an artistic description. The subjects such as “feudal – democratic realism”, “bourgeois –democratic realism” used by the author had not proved fairly (2, 216).

The scientific position of Mr. Mr. Ibrahimov which is the academician of Azerbaijani SSR AS brought about a big interest as well. Thus, he notified in the report of “realism in Azerbaijanahig poem” that the folklore, being an expression of nation’s artistic thought is connected to the real life. The realism mostly is appeared in Ashig’s poetry which is connected to the people’s life and style. Ashig poetry had an impact on literature of Middle ages because of its close relations with the people. Namely, that poetry strengthened the democratic and realist trends accordingly. Ashig’s poetry had been developed in the results of mutual relations with people’s creative on the one hand and with the written literature on the other.

Ashig’s poetry is a democratic poetry in terms of artistic form and styles. It always reflected the real condition of the nation’s language and shapes.

Therefore, the realistic descriptions and scenes have been always appearing in the poetry: “The realism of Ashig’s poetry has always based on people’s life, language and artistic mentality, and has been developed in this way”. The lyrics of famous ashigs such as Gurbani, Asgig Abbas, Sari Ashig and the saga “Koroglu” mostly focused on realism. In the further period we may come across with the attributes of realism in the poetry of Sayyad-Novada, especially of AshigAlasgar, ChobanAfgan and the others. The realism of Ashig’s poetry became stronger and complete in the 19–20th centuries (3).

Mr. M. Ibrahimoc’s opinions cannot be accepted for the reason that he relates Ashig’s creative to realism, and it disapproves that realism appeared in the certain time.

If seriously to take into account this conception, we may relate our romantic poetry to the realistic art work then, but it will not able to settle the problem.

The literary critic Mrs. H. Smirnova (from Almaty) shares on issues about the realistic traditions of Kazakh folklore she has notified that in the second part of 19th centuries and and in the early of 20th the traditional folklore, the genre of Ahsig’s poetry. Historic epos and songs have owned the realistic features.

Mr. U. Abdullayev (from Ashgabat) notified that the realism has been existed side by side with fantasy and mythology in the folk art and literature of Turkmen along the years. In the period before the realism had not been forms as one of the artistic methods in Turkmen literature. The real character of this method appeared in the works of following poets of the second part of 19th century. However, materialist, mythological and idealist idea were mixed up with each other in the mentality of the author of that period.

During the conference Mr. M. Dusysenov (from Almaty) brought about to the attention of the participants that the literature of Kazakhs included not only folkloresamples but also individual folklore works of the certain authors. Du to him, the dynamic description of the creature and an initiative in order to create typical characters was in the stronger position in the works of oral producers while a domesticity had a strong position in the folklore of Kazakh. It might be said that the didactics demonstrated itself mostly for Kazakh’s folklore and oral literature. To deny the positive significance of the didacticism in the apparent conditions would be unfair. In any cases, an initial formation of realism in the Khazak’s literature took place generally in the scale of didacticism.

Mr. H. Otdayev (from Ashgabat)notified in his report about realism “Turkmen poets and realism” that the people’s poets play a significant role in the development of the realism and socialist realism, and meanwhile he notes that BayramShair, DurdiGilinj and Ata Saleh are the founders of new Turkmen soviet poetry. He claimed that a method of socialist realism was appeared just in their poetry at the first time. The progressive features of the literature of pre-revolutionary period and the innovations appeared in the results of socialism came together organically in their creative. The people’s poets, by owning a method of socialist realism, have been based on realistic features of eastern literature and investigated its content deeply. However, this position is needed to be specified as well. Because, herein the theory of “elements” has been taken as a priority and artistic esthetic aspects have been forgotten.

Mr. A. Chayimetov (from Tashkent) has investigated the realism in the creative of AlshirNavai. He said: “Mr. A. Navai has always leaned on the experience of Uzbek, Iranian, Tajik, Azerbaijani and Saudi Arabia literatures in order to express his humanist ideas and opinions, ”and approached to their artistic styles creatively. If Navai applies the romantic color and expression in order to describe the positive events and the facts, so in case of life’s negativities he uses mostly the realistic reflection of the original creature. Superiority of romanticism in the artistic and poetic descriptions of Navai does not damage a role of him in approving of the realist principles in Uzbek’s literature (3). Due to the speaker an interest of the poet in realism is mostly felt in his satiric, didactic works and process: “Certainly, Navai is never set a goal for himself to describe a typical character and environment”. However, he made a lot for the formation and development of realist method in Uzbek literature. The poets such as Babur, Faraqi, Makhmur, Mugimi have learned a lot from him” (3).

Mr. M. Guluzade (from Baku) supported an idea that during 12–16th centuries the main and the leading method of Azerbaijani literature was a unique romanticism of middle ages. The reason was a great talent of the poets and apparent historic conditions of romanticism. Thus, the public and religious rules of that period did not meet the great ideas of poets. The speaker noted that Nizami created the shapes of ideal heroes such as Farhad, Mahinbanu, Shirin, Bahram Gur and Isgandar because of artistic environment. And mostly the works of Nizami and Fizuli demonstrates the scenes of life realities and the characters of the human being. Especially, the poems “Biz ve Rami” by Mr. Furgani and “Farhadname” by ArifArdabilli included the means of realist description and expression”.

Mr. M. Guluzade has been understood the realism as a truthfulness. So that, it has been caused an application of that creative method in the romantic poetry of middle ages and meanwhile In Ashig’s creative. If to take into account this matter, it is not so hard to find out therealism in the works of classic poets. We have got a classic heritage, many popular tales, sagas and etc. in our Ashig’s literature that reflects realism in terms of real reflection of life realities and contains itself the rich realistic features. But, it is impossible to ascribe those works to the method of realistic creative based on above mentioned “elements” and “details”.

Mr. A. Dadashzade has put forward an idea that the truthfulness, the sensitive reflection of the heroes’ feelings and the humanism still is not a realism. The history and the methodology of realistic mentality requires more serious definiteness and precision. However, no doubt that approving of realistic method and realistic mentality caused by the objective development of the world literature. The realistic traditions in Azerbaijani literature became stronger in 17th, especially in 18th century. The geographical and time concreteness had been increased, the real images and dramatic stories of the period attracted more attention. The literary critic based on poems of M.V. Vidadi, Aga Masihi, Sh.Shrivani in order to motivate his own ideas. Due to Dadashzade, the conditional and romantic anxieties of our language specific to middle ages poetry is getting down in this period and it is replaced by the mundane motives. People’s poetry and national language have owned the reputation in the classic poetry. The poems of Vagif are especially great of importance in this respect. Vagif is a realist because of his approach to life happenings. The realism of 18th century is a descriptive and spontaneous, and he played a big role in the development of complete realism.

The associated member of Tajikistan SSR AS Mr. Brakinski, leaning on rich artistic materials he noted that satiric, romantic. Symbolical realistic features have been coexisted even in the ancient literature, namely in the legends and myths of Shumer-Akkad, Iran and etc. In the further period, namely in the development period of Arabian, Persian and Turkish language those features have not lost its power. So, as one of the method, it was proved its presence in the Eastern nations’ literature of 19th century. Sharif (form Moscow) widely spoke about the creation and development way of realism in the literature of Caucasus. He noted that the roots of realism is lead to 18th century, namely ased on creative of Guramishvili, Orbeliani, Sayad-Nova and Vagif. The realism had not formed in all three literatures in the middle of 19th century. He pointed out a special role of Russian and European literature for increasing interest of realism.

The doctor of philological sciences Mr. K. Talibzade spoke about the investigations of realism in Azerbaijani literature. He generalized the disputes on history and development stages of the realism’s formation, which was an artistic method in Azerbaijan.

The most interesting reports of the conference especially were about the identification and application process of similar features of joint objective laws in terms of typological view which appeared in the process of formation and development of realism in the literature of Soviet Eastern nations.

The theoretical and esthetic principles of realism were not only a matter of discussions. Meanwhile, romanticism, its principles, ideological, political and artistic aspects in the artistic heritage of the different Eastern nations had been discussed, too.

The mutual development of realism and romanticism of 19th century became a scientific object of investigations in the result of the certain facts and artistic similarities during the reports of Mr. M.S. Jafarov and Mr. N. Nigmatullin (Kazakh).

At the same time, the scientific classification of stages and the types of realism by Mr. Nirillininm Mr.Ch. Ismakov (from Kazan) and Mr. Garayev had been made namely for the approving of the similar development ways of realism in both literatures. The following opinions of Nurillinin on typology and classification of realism attracted much more attention: Above all, we should come to an agreement in order to express the subjects such as “realism and critical realism” in their original meanings, and meanwhile we should clarify the context in accordance with these conceptions. The realism is a creative type that includes itself some several methods of realism such as enlightening realism, critical realism and socialist realism” (4, 4).

Due to the I. Nurullinin that any real description still cannot be realism as well as each realism cannot be a critical realism. The critical realism is a kind of realism that does not reveal the individuals, so it criticizes the bases of the public rules and weakens the basis of unjust structure.

While the investigations of scientific theoretical bases of realism Mr. I. Nurullinin said as follows: “The critical realism in the Tatar literature had been created on the bases of traditions of realism that already developed before the public and ideological conditions of revolution in 1905”.

But, without these traditions the critical realism cannot prove itself fully in the Uzbek, Kazakh, Turkmen, Kirgiz literatures in the end of 19th century and also in the early of 20th (4, 32).

The realism and its development stages in the literature of Eastern nations have been based on scientific thesis of Mr.I. Nigmatulin as well. He considered that Tatar literature came to critical realism directly from enlightening realism by ignoring the romantic stage (end of 19th century and early of 20th). The critical realismwas appeared simultaneously with romanticism in Tatar literature. The Attitudes to realism, romanticism, and other creative methods were different during the national independence. National statehood ideology and the new principles of humanitarian mentalitymade this issue more actual. Taking into account above mentioned conception the stages of realism and its typological features should be investigated once again.