Shortly after Ukraine had declared its independence in December 1991, Joseph Brodsky, Nobel Prize Winner in Literature 1987, wrote the poem «На независимость Украины» [On the Independence of Ukraine], which sarcastically mourns the separation of Russia and Ukraine. In 2015, responding to the armed conflict in Ukraine, teacher and poet Aleksandr Byvshev issued a reply to this poem under the same title, taking the side of Ukraine. Both poems have been perceived as aggressive, insulting, and anti-Ukrainian or anti-Russian, respectively. This paper asks the question of whether – and in what sense – the two poems are aggressive by drawing on the linguistic features of the two texts. The investigation of the linguistic characteristics of the poems is supplemented by an analysis inspired by argumentation theory, since, as will be shown, both texts are essentially argumentative.
Dieses Werk steht unter der Lizenz Creative Commons Namensnennung 4.0 International.