The aim of this article is to show how a text categorised as a part of popular culture bears in a concentrated form the elementary authorial - perceptional conventions on which is based a reader's basic experience with the text. The author presents this problem on one of the key works of the Slovak interwar popular literature: Jozef Niznansky's novel 'Cachticka pani'. The author drew from the work of Frye and Miko about the possibility and necessity of reading a literary text from an archetypal perspective; and the work of Eco and Liba about the structure of a popular literature and mass culture. The article sheds light on the archetypal underpinning of Niznansky's novel and on the inter-textual references within this work to the oldest versions of myths about the search for eternal youth and eternal life, and myths about the search for social justice in a variant pointing to the legend of Janosik. The current article represents a completely new analytical reading of the interwar text in the Slovak literary context. The study: uncovers the novel's inter-textual connections; argues that from a genre point of view it is an adventure novel from history, and not a historical novel; and shows that popular literature can serve as a 'school of reading' given its structure which is created as a game with the conventions between the author and the reader.
Financed by the National Centre for Research and Development under grant No. SP/I/1/77065/10 by the strategic scientific research and experimental development program:
SYNAT - “Interdisciplinary System for Interactive Scientific and Scientific-Technical Information”.