Download A Coat of Many Colors: Osip Mandelstam and His Mythologies by Gregory Freidin PDF

By Gregory Freidin

For the main poets of Osip Mandelstam's new release, poetry represented a calling within the such a lot tangible experience. to answer it intended to model from the on hand cultural and private fabric a mythic self, person who may possibly serve either because the organizing topic for poetry and as an item of worshipful adoration. A profitable poet like Mandelstam therefore turned the point of interest of a posh cultural phenomenon-perhaps a charismatic cult-that formed his writings, gesture, and reception.

Gregory Freidin examines Mandelstam's legacy during this broader context and lays the basis for imminent modernist Russian poetry as a charismatic establishment. He strains the interaction of poetic culture, own heritage, ancient occasions, spiritual tradition, and political advancements as they entered the symbolic order of Mandelstam's paintings and helped make sure its outlines within the reader's mind's eye. Many very important points of the Mandelstam phenomenon, together with the Jewish subject, the which means of the poet's Christianity, his political stand, and, specifically, his clash with Stalin and Stalinism, obtain right here a brand new interpretation.

A case examine within the emergence of a literary cult, A Coat of many colours finds how Russian poetry of the early 20th century functioned as a charismatic establishment of a enormously glossy sort. those that belonged to it mixed wisdom of the new reports in fable, magic, and faith with the cultivation of verbal magic, mythic attention, and unorthodox spiritual ideals. Following Mandelstam's occupation over its whole span (1908-1938), Freidin indicates how the poet benefited from literary scholarship, comparative mythology, the heritage and sociology of faith whilst he used to be emulating in his poetry the very topic of those educational disciplines. To account for this duality in reading Mandelstam's writings, Freidin attracts on explanatory paradigms of up to date human sciences, from Saussure and the Formalists to Weber, Durkheim, Freud, and Marcel Mauss.

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Additional resources for A Coat of Many Colors: Osip Mandelstam and His Mythologies of Self-Presentation

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Gornfel'd, who in 1928 accused Mandelstam of literary piracy. Apparently through no fault of Mandelstam, Gornfel'd's pre-1917 translation of Coster appeared under the name of Mandelstam, who had only served as editor (see chapters 7 and 8 as well as Appendix I). As Nadezhda Mandelstam suggested dec- < previous page page_31 next page > < previous page page_32 next page > Page 32 ades later, this ultimately wrongful accusation and Mandelstam's travails to clear his name helped him to regain his "sense of his inner certitude," without which he could not function as a poet.

The following is a literal translation. The heart is clothed, as though in a cloud, And the flesh pretends to be stone Until the vocation of a poet Is revealed to him by the Lord. Some kind of passion has seized [him], Some kind of heaviness is alive; < previous page page_38 next page > < previous page page_39 next page > Page 39 And specters demand a body, And words are in communion with flesh. Like women yearning for a caress, objects Yearn for cherished names, But grasping the long-cherished omens, The poet is in darkness submerged.

But there were others, admittedly few, who, however glorious or inglorious their lives and deaths, managed to preserve their names or, better, managed to have their names closely associated with the image of their epoch. Some stamp a lion on their coins, Others a head; Different copper, gold and bronze pancakes Lie in the earth with equal honor. The age, trying to crack them, has imprinted them with its teeth. Time is filing me down like a coin, And I am no longer sufficient unto myself, Not sufficient, not enoughand I am looking for a comparison .

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