P.V. Ulyanov, Y.G. Chernyshov
Russia in an Ambivalent “Image of the Bear” (on the Example of European Cartoons of the Period of the First World War)
The paper examines specific examples of the image of the “Russian Beaf’ in the European cartoons of the World War I. English, French and German cartoons of that period are used as sources. The research is made of formation in the minds of Europeans of “enemy image” and “ally image” with respect to Russia, which is often associated with the bear. The authors conducted an excursion into the history of the emergence and subsequent spread of the image of the “Russian Bear”, thereby characterizing the foreign image of Russia as at the beginning of World War I in the representation of Europeans. Analyzing the image of the “Russian Bear” in Europe, the article describes propaganda “portrait of the enemy” and “portrait of an ally” as a system where the elements are inherent in different quality characteristics. The study found the stereotypical features of the “Russian Bear” image, which depending on the orientation of propaganda publications, lined up in holistic and visual images of the “enemy” or “ally.” European perceptions of Russia during World War I, as well as before its beginning, had an ambivalent character which resonated with the traditional perception of the double image of the bear. The Europeans are accustomed to seeing in the “Russian Bear” both the strength and wildness, and this ambivalence of perception continues to manifest itself in the political rhetoric up to the present time.
Key words: the “Russian Bear”, image of Russia, “image of the enemy”, “image of the ally”, propaganda, European caricatures, the First World War
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