Artem Kosheliev, Ph.D. student (History), Taras Shevchenko National University of Kyiv.

Abstract

The article discusses the social and economic prerequisites for the formation of a “biographical culture” in the United States during the XX – beginning XXI centuries. Under the term “biographical culture”, the author understands the process of creating biographical narratives. Also, this term includes social-economic conditions in which biographical narratives influence the creation of the image of a certain personality in the collective consciousness.

Using the comparative method, the study analyzes the socio-economic systems of the two states, within which were formed various “biographical cultures”. The article defines three criteria for the development of the state and society, which directly affect the creation of this culture. The first criterion is the presence or absence of a free market in the state. The second criterion is the existence of censorship in the state. The third criterion is the degree of development of the infrastructure for the distribution of biographical works and the level of its state`s dependence.

The analysis based on the thesis that active and passive societies exist in different countries. Their development depends on the political, economic and ideological conditions. Based on the study, the author concluded that US society is classified as active. This means that it can produce and distribute biographical works independently without pressure from the state. Accordingly, the images of personalities created in biographical works in the USA reflect the preferences and value orientations of American society. Social values, which are reflected in the way of creating the image of a biography`s hero, develop and transform organically, but not under the pressure of a state machine.

Keywords: biographical works, “biographical culture”, socio-economic conditions, USA, personality, social values.

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DOI 10.17721/2521-1706.2018.06.07-20