For citation:

Klyaus V.L. The Plot ATU/SUS 931 (“Oedipus” / “Incest”) in the Oral Literacy of the Transbaikal Russian-Chinese Borderland. Studia Litterarum, 2020, vol. 5, no 3, pp. 308–327. (In Russ.)


Author: V.L. Klyaus
Information about the author:

Vladimir L. Klyaus, DSc in Philology, Head of the Folklore Department, A.M. Gorky Institute of World Literature of the Russian Academy of Sciences, Povarskaya 25 a, 121069 Moscow, Russia.


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Received: February 01, 2020
Published: September 25, 2020
Issue: 2020 Vol. 5, №3
Department: Folklore Studies
Pages: 308-327

UDK: 398.1
BBK: 82.3
Keywords: plot ATU/SUS 931 (“Oedipus”/“Incest”), Russian folklore, Trans-Baikal Russian- Chinese borderland, transformation of a literary text through oral existence.


The article examines the earliest and latest recordings of the plot about the father-killer and the incest (ATU/SUS 931) in the East Slavic folk tradition. Early and late recordings of oral narratives on this subject were done among the Russian population of Transbaikalia, which historically includes Chinese Russians living in the Hulunbuir of the Autonomous Region of Inner Mongolia, China, bordering with Russia. We encounter the first evidence of the transition of the plot of the old Russian work The Tale of Andrew of Crete to oral existence in the papers of Küchelbeker who was in exile in Barguzin in the 1830s. Subsequently, folklore texts on the plot 931 were recorded only in Ukraine, in Belarus, and in the European part of Russia. In 2007–2019, I recorded several versions of the story about the father-killer and incest among Chinese Russians living in Ergun urban district; the traces of its existence were also discovered in East Transbaikalie. The analysis of these texts shows how the oral existence has altered the plot with a written origin; the transformation occurred due to the fictionionalization of the narrative and the relevance of archaic ideas about the predetermination of the human fate.


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