The poetic work of Aleksander Wat has enjoyed unfl agging popularity for the last 25 years. Critical appreciations of his work invariably emphasize a strong connection between his poetic work and some elements of his biography, i.e. detention in NKVD prisons, deportation to Soviet Central Asia, and the pain and stress of an incurable illness in the late fi fties and sixties. This article argues that the key to his verse can be found the concept of somatopoetry which takes into account both the heightened awareness of the body and the sensuality of Wat’s lyrical utterance. More specifi cally, this article attempts to draw an acoustic map of the poet’s verse written between 1957 and 1967, using the tools of f musicology, cultural anthropology of things and audio-anthropology. Drawing on Andrzej Hejmej’s concept of musicality Type 2 (thematization of music in a literary composition), the article tries to trace the presence of instruments in Wat’s work and assess their phonic and cultural roles in the creation of meaning. Finally, the article claims that the phonic layer beneath the references to instruments forms a track that can be described as a route to the poet’s death.
The beginnings of the study of Polish literary regionalism are usually traced back to the interwar period, and in particular Stefania Skwarczyńska’s Regionalism and the main approaches in the theory of literature, published in 1937. Although this book is believed is be the pioneering work of literary regionalism in Poland, the trail was in fact blazed over fi fty years earlier by Bronisław Chlebowski’s study of the role regional variation in the development of Polish literature. He was inspired by Hippolyte Taine’s concept of milieu and Friedrich Ratzel’s anthropogeography. This article claims that Chlebowski’s theory of territoriality, as it was called by Wacław Borowy, both in its general outlines and in some particulars, is a thought-provoking methodological project and a valuable reference point for current regionalist research. The article also muses over the reasons why Chlebowski’s groundbreaking approach failed to attract followers.
Hugo Kołłątaj’s treatise On dreams, or my refl ections on the reveries of nighttime reveries (1796) is an attempt at analyzing and classifying various dream theories and at analyzing and interpreting his own dreams. He takes the rationalist view of dreams, which, following Aristotle’s naturalistic philosophy, Hippocrates’ humours and the modern mechanistic theories, looks for physiological, medical and mnemic explanations of this phenomenon. The aim of his article is to position Kołłątaj’s treatise, a notable product of the Polish Enlightenment, against the background of all these naturalistic theories as well as to identify the points where he shares their approach and those that are distinctly his own. What makes the comparison more complex is the cross-genre nature of the work: it combines the elements of a philosophical treatise on dreams, a catalogue of ‘curious dreams’ and an autobiographical essay.
This paper argues that while writing about the works of other authors Bolesław Leśmian made use of the same ironic approach he employed in his own writing. A close analysis of his ironic strategies, which can be found in his reviews, theoretical refl ections, practical criticism and metacritical texts, leads to the conclusion that Leśmian’s irony is a stylistic trope in a literary poetics of dance, an aesthetic category as well as an artistic and existential concept akin to the ‘permanent parabasis’ of the Romantics.
‘The Tatras’ was originally published in the periodical Przegląd Zakopiański in 1902. The poem evokes an apocalyptic landscape dominated by the personifi ed Tatras and an emerging community (a rare example of a collective making an appearance in Miciński’s poetry), whose ways leave little room for optimism. The world, destroyed in a global confl agration, is being harried by a vicious Spectre, whose ravages are highlighted by the poem’s rhythmic structure. In spite of the similarities between it and some of Miciński’s best-known verse from the volume W mroku gwiazd (In the Twilight of the Stars) – i.e. the choice of imagery and colours, the infl uence of expres sionism) – ‘The Tatras’ remains a strikingly odd poem. It is that peculiar quality which may have made one of the less popular of Miciński’s poems.
The main aim of the paper is to urge a correction in Jan Kochanowski’s translation Euripides’s Alcestis (v. 67), edited posthumously by Jan Januszowski in the volume Fragmenta albo pozostałe pisma (1590). In the Greek text (Prologue, l. 67) Apollo prophesizes that a man on the way back from wintry Thrace (Θρῄκης ἐκ τόπων δυσχειμέρων) (the reference to King Eurystheus’ horses enables us to identify him as Heracles) will snatch Alcestis from the hands of Death. In the Polish version of Apollo’s prophesy we fi nd the phrase ‘do zimnej Trąby’ (‘cold Tube’). The philological investigation undertaken in this paper has two goals to achieve. Firstly, it reconstructs the literary tradition of presenting Thrace as a land of severely cold climate (Homer, Livy, Virgil, Horace, Ovid, Statius). And secondly, it takes into consideration the meaning of this poetical landscape in Kochanowski’s Latin poetry and proposes the emendation of what must have been a printer’s error.
The article examines the relationship between two types of narration, the autobiographical and the automythographical, and two concepts of time upon which they depend, the linear and the cyclical respectively. The analysis is focused on the use of the strategy of recurrence, i.e. having the same episode from the author’s life recur in various stylistic variants in the course of a single autobiographical story line. The case in point is Artur Sandauer’s Zapiski z martwego miasta (Notes from a Dead City), where iteration is used not to illumine the author’s experience but rather to establish and fi x its irreparable inaccessibility. It seems that the author’s formal games with the conventions of traditional autobiography are connected with problem of Jewish assimilation in Polish society.