Traditions in Russia

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Contents Introduction 1. Russian holidays: old and new traditions 1.1 Christmas and the guessing, New Year and old new year 1.2 Night of Ivan Kupala 1.3 Pancake week 1.4 New traditions: the Twenty Third of February and the Eighth of March 2. Representations about life cycle and the traditions connected to it Ancient representations about a birth, death and the introduction into a marriage 2.2 Wedding traditions 3. Signs as a part of Russian culture 3.1 Role of signs in human life 3.2 Signs about the house and about domestic spirits 3.3 Household signs Conclusion Literature Introduction In ordinary consciousness "culture" acts as the collective image uniting art, religion, science, traditions, etc. But in a modern science one of leaders is the anthropological

principle, therefore it is important to remember, that the concept of culture designates the universal attitude of the person to the world through which the person creates the world. Each culture is the unique universe created by the certain attitude of the person to the world. Studying various cultures, we investigate not simply books, cathedrals or archeological finds, - we open for ourselves other human worlds in which people lived, though we lived differently. Each culture is a way of creative self-realization of the person. Therefore comprehension of other cultures not only gives us new knowledge, but also acquaints us with traditions, customs, world-outlook. Tradition is that « that has passed from one generation to another that is inherited from previous generations

(e.g., ideas, sights, tastes, an image of actions, customs) » (Ожегов, Шведова, 1998, p. 806), therefore, speaking about Russian traditions, it is necessary to mention customs, ceremonies and traditional representations of Russian people, too. That allows us to unit such concepts as both customs and ceremonies that have symbolical character and differ repeatability. Traditional representations are included in a circle of cases in point as these representations have formed a basis for the given ceremonies and customs. All over the world there is a danger that in the nearest future all cultures can appear similar. Movement to this featureless uniformity occurs already now. The preservation and observance of the Russian traditions connected to signs is not only

practical advantage for a life and a life of the modern person, but also rescue of his cultural heritage. The number of the traditions describing culture of the country includes both traditional representations about the world and the ceremonies connected to these representations, and holidays, both old and modern. Today many researchers pay attention to the Russian traditions, which are included in number of the most interesting ones, such as national signs, traditions of life cycle, Christmas and New Year and a number of other traditional holidays. 1. Russian holidays: old and new traditions 1.1 Christmas and the guessing, New Year and old new year The beautiful and solemn holiday Christmas in Russia is closely connected to a meeting of New year. In spite of the fact that

Christmas celebrate and in all other Christian countries, in Russia the holiday differs special traditions, characteristic only for our country. In Russia eve of Christmas is on the sixth of January. This day is the final one the Christmas post. The word Christmas Eve – Sochelnik - occurs from a word сочиво. This is a ceremonial, ritual dish, which was obligatory for this evening. Centuries ago the table was strewed hay, laid a cloth, in the center of a table they put a dish with twelve ritual dishes which should be equal to the number of apostles. On a celebratory Russian table there were pancakes, aspic, a fish, a pig with porridge, hot, honey gingerbreads by opportunities of family. On the Christmas Eve people did not eat all day long until the first evening star rose,