The Habsburg myth of Martin Krpan as a contemporary Slovenian myth
The article analyses the contemporary Krpanomania in Slovenia as a phenomenon that represents the culmination of the roughly one-hundred-year history of the Krpan myth as one of Slovenia’s central national myths. Considerable attention is paid to two types of reading of the tale about Martin Krpan (historical-ethnological and literary-critical readings). All these readings, which were often imposed, played a key role in the tale’s transformation into a national myth whose mythical nature is perhaps most evident from the fact that Martin Krpan has turned into an “interpretation aid” for giving meaning to the nation’s daily life, especially concerning the relationship of the Slovenes with the outside world, in particular the EU. The article also proffers the thesis that the story about Martin Krpan is a variant of a Habsburg myth; in support of this thesis it deals with the presence of a variant of the Krpan myth in Italian literature (C. Cergoly Serini).