A System of Similes and Metaphors in O. Slavnikova’s Novel “2017”

2023. № 6, 95-106

Zoya Yu. Petrova1, Natalia A. Fateeva2, Vinogradov Russian Language Institute of the Russian
Academy of Sciences (Russia, Moscow), zoyap@mail.ru1, nafata@rambler.ru2


The article examines metaphors and similes in O. Slavnikova’s novel “2017,” which was awarded the Russian Booker Prize in 2006. In the novel, comparative tropes form a system within which the most frequent classes of comparative imagery can be identifi ed which, as it happens, play a key role in the novel’s world picture: designations of artifacts, mainly household items and food, names of inanimate replicas of people — doll, mannequin, puppet. Designations of animals also stand out, among which the most common are the ones referring to dead animals, as well as words of the semantic class “Insects”. A special place in the novel is taken by images associated with death: mummy, dead person, corpse, death, etc. All these fi gurative denominations are characteristic of Slavnikova’s prose as a whole and most often have negative connotations, reflecting the tendency towards the predominance of the inanimate over the living. There are also a number of less frequent classes of comparative imagery that nevertheless play a dominant role in the novel. These are certain types of personifi cation, primarily the personifi cation of stones and fate, as well as i mages of mythical creatures from Ural folklore, which create a kind of oscillation between the real and unreal planes. They are related to the Ural theme and are a feature of the novel in question.

For citation:

Petrova Z. Yu., Fateeva N. A. A System of Similes and Metaphors in O. Slavnikova’s Novel “2017”. Russian Speech = Russkaya Rech’. 2023. No. 6. Pp. 95–106. DOI: 10.31857/S013161170028372-8.


The work was carried out with the fi nancial support of the Russian Science Foundation, project No. 23-28-00060 “Dynamics of comparative constructions and types of their interaction in modern Russian prose.”