Forum Antiquum Spring 2021 lecture: The Poet in Exile. Reception of Antiquity in times of censorship
- Thursday 20 May 2021
- The lectures are online.
The Poet in Exile. Reception of Antiquity in times of censorship
Modern poetry that deals with ancient myths and motifs is often regarded as employing a ‘secret language’, especially when a poem has been produced in an environment of terror and censorship. Yet, can reception of antiquity be reduced to the communication of coded messages? What happens when the censors, too, are well acquainted with the ancient material? And when does censorship turn into self-censorship? In my talk, I shall discuss three poems by the German poet Peter Huchel (1903-1981), the famous editor of the journal Sinn und Form and one of the most prominent victims of the Staatssicherheit during the regime of the former German Democratic Republic. In his subtle reflections upon ancient metaphors and motifs, particularly in relation to Ovid’s Tristia, Huchel reconsiders the risk of self-censorship and the power of poetry. How can a poem succeed in extricating itself from the tentacles of politics?
Physical meetings are still very restricted for anything that is not part of the regular education programme. Therefore, we will meet in the following Kaltura Live Room.