All the goods available from the Pragmema project are a by-product of the research activities of our members. Asking questions about everyday life stimulates our thought-processes, which, in turn, can find expression in the form of books and other things like, for example, a box of dominos or a colouring book. Working on the level of visual art we combine experience with discourse and practice with intellect.
As a result, the objects we produce can familiarize us with new visual patterns which at the same time provide an insight into our own Russian identity.
Communicative Conventions and Social Scenarios: Philological Practicum / comp. S. Adonyeva, S. Kupriyanova; ed. S. Adonyeva. St. Petersburg, 2014. 336 pages, illustrations. (in Russian)
The research presented in the book demonstrates how the methods employed in the analysis of the communicative strategies which form social relationships have been applied to factual material — the speech and behavioural practice of contemporary Russian society. The research addresses various issues: the social and linguistic mechanisms which permit the adoption of gender and age roles, traditional and new symbolic practices (from the ritual known as 'the killing of the newly-wed’ to contemporary advertising). The authors focus on the relationship between communicative conventions and social scenarios.
Symbolic order. Svetlana Adonyeva. St. Petersburg. The Propp Centre: Amfora. TID Amfora, 2011. 167 pages. Illustrations. (Series ‘Primary signs or pragmemas’) (in Russian)
Svetlana Adonyeva’s book “Symbolic order” is the first in a series of research publications under the general title of “Primary signs or pragmemas”, which deal with social, symbolic and psychological mechanisms for constructing reality. In spite of their education and urban life in a big city everyone inherits their everyday practices (their daily timetable, hygiene regime, organization of their household etc.) from their parents, while they, in turn, inherited them from their parents, our grandmothers and grandfathers. The book is dedicated to the questions of what we inherit and why we accept and reproduce certain things; what are the mechanisms of our behaviour and what schemas influence the results of our daily actions.
“The past in the future — that is the construct which interests me. The past as an object of reflection always takes the form of an ideological construct: this kind of past is created so that we can deal with the present” (S. Adonyeva)
The Cheburashka Complex, or Society of Obedience: Collection of Articles / Comp., ed. I. Veselova. St. Petersburg, 2012. 272 pages. Illustrations. (Series ‘Primary signs or pragmemas’) (in Russian)
The ethos of patron-client relations is hidden in the mythology of the Soviet cultural heroes, the nice and inoffensive at first glance Cheburashkas and Snegurochkas. The power of suggestive impact depends directly on the fact of our wholesale initiation into this mythology. The psychological and social legacy inherited by us all from previous generations is the external locus of control, built into our bodies and awaiting realization.
Our search for approbation, our constant looking around for the observer who never lets us out of his sight — even when we have already turned the corner and can finally remove the hated hat and scarf, — the threat of an angry shout all deprive us of the freedom to experience the whistle of the wind in our ears and the feeling of independence.
Masculine Gender. First Person. Singular Number: The Diaries of D. Lukichov and D. Bespalov / Comp., ed., intr. and concl. article by S. Adonyeva. St. Petersburg, 2013. 288 pages. Illustrations. (Series ‘Primary signs or pragmemas’) (in Russian)
The aim of this publication is to show the reader the inner life of two men, revealed by them in their diaries. It is astonishing, but we can far better imagine the daily routine of Pierre Bezukhov and Eugene Onegin than the daily routine of our rural ancestors. We imagine their life from the outside, through the Soviet cinema and Soviet literature. The peasant diaries published here are unique. Firstly, because these diaries show how the men work their way towards self-definition and the acquisition of those speech styles which can outline and fragment the landscape of their inner life. Secondly, because these diaries provide reliable proof that “little” or “simple” men, those bearded peasant-fellows from illustrations of the Russian village and brave front-line soldiers in faded quilted jackets, existed not only in posters, pictures and the cinema. They existed in real life and were neither smaller nor simpler than we ourselves are.
The designs for this colouring book are based on the shapes and ornamentation of Russian clay toys. Have a go at reproducing the pattern as exactly as possible or create your own version of the toy: the ornamentation and colour range of other toys from the same craft style should help you with this.
Ecologically friendly canvas bags with convenient long handles, decorated with pictures of modern Russian clay toys.
The Russian clay toy is an art form which gives pleasure and joy to both adults and children. They are funny little figurines-fetishes. Some are shaped like men or bears, others are are women-birds, pretty little foxes, ladies and completely incomprehensible creatures called the ‘lickers’ (lizun).
They fit into the palm of one's hand, they can sometimes whistle, and they are always in some kind of mood: happy, focused, surprised. Even if they look fierce, they are still not frightening: after all, they are so little and just need us to love them.
We would like to give our children, as they get to know the colours and patterns of clay toys in their play, a way of accessing the source which has fuelled true art with its immense energies down the ages.