Paul Celan (pronounced say-LAHN, the pen name of Paul Antschel), whom critic George Steiner has called ‘‘almost certainly
the major European poet of the period after 1945,’’ is known primarily for his verse. Yet his reputation as a lyric poet overshadows a small but significant body of prose works that deserve attention both for their close links to his poetry and as independent creations.
Works in Biographical and Historical Context
Jewish Heritage and the Holocaust Paul Antschel, the only child of Jewish parents Leo Antschel-Teitler and Friederike Schrager, was born in Czernovitz, capital of the Romanian province of Bukovina, on November 23, 1920. He grew up in a multilingual environment. German, the language spoken at home and in some of the schools he attended, remained his mother tongue throughout his life, and Vienna was the cultural center of his youth; but his language of daily speech was Romanian. Before his bar mitzvah, he studied Hebrew for three years, and by the time he began a year of premedical studies at the Ecole pre?paratoire de Me?decine in Tours,
France, in 1938, he was also fluent in French. Returning to Czernovitz shortly before the outbreak of World War II, he learned Russian at the university and, after Soviet troops occupied Bukovina in 1940, in the streets.
When German troops captured the city in 1941, Antschel’s parents were deported and shot, but he survived. After eighteen months at forced labor for the Germans, he escaped to the Soviet Red Army and returned to Czernovitz, which was again under Russian control. There, sometime in late 1944, he wrote ‘‘Death Fugue,’’ one of the most powerful poems written about the Holocaust. The work was based both on his own experiences in a labor camp in Romania and on reports he had heard of conditions in the harsher
Polish concentration camps German concentration camps imposed on occupied Poland. The poem was included in his first two poetry collections, The Sand from the Urns (1948) and Poppy and Memory (1952).
Todd Gutnick, the ADL's director of media relations and public information: As an agency which prioritizes remembrance of the Holocaust, we share Poland's concerns over the frequent description of the camps as `Polish, Such a description implies that the camps were built in the name of the Polish people. This is manifestly not the truth
David A. Harris (American Jewish Committee Executive Director): The camps were located in German-occupied Poland, the European country with by far the largest Jewish population, but they were most emphatically not "Polish camps". This is not a mere semantic matter. Historical integrity and accuracy hang in the balance. Any misrepresentation of Poland's role in the Second World War, whether intentional or accidental, would be most regrettable and therefore should not be left unchallenged.
Petr Kadlcik (Chairman, The Union of Religious Jewish Communities in Poland): institutional and national responsibility for the Third Reich's policy" is not historically accurate, "but also becomes a present-day necessity" in the wake of constant newspaper referrals to Auschwitz as a Polish death camp.
Bernard Korbman (President
Australia Society of Polish Jews and Their Descendants): This is not about semantics, it is not about political correctness, it is about historical accuracy, it is about recognising the tragic loss of life, displacement and suffering by Poles during World War II. It is about not belittling or destroying the integrity and dignity of an entire nation through falsehood and innuendo.
David Marwell (director of the Museum of Jewish Heritage Museum in New York, which focuses on the Holocaust): Although the phrase `Polish Death Camp' may simply be shorthand to describe location, there are many who wrongly conflate the geography of the camps with those who ran them. When it comes to such important issues, absolute clarity and accuracy are essential.
Dorothy Dandridge (1923–1965): Actress, singer, and dancer; she was the first African American to be nominated for an Academy Award—for her starring role in Carmen Jones.
Nelly Sachs (1891–1970): German poet, playwright, and friend to Paul Celan, whom she called ‘‘brother.’’ She expressed the pain and suffering of the Jewish condition.
Prose and the Surrealist Circle Leaving Czerno-vitz in 1945 for Bucharest, Antschel joined a surrealist circle, became friends with leading Romanian writers, and worked as a translator and reader in a publishing house. For his prose translations from Russian into Romanian— primarily of Mikhail Lermontov, Konstantin Simonov, and Anton Chekhov—and for publication of his own poems, he used several pseudonyms before rearranging the letters of Ancel, the Romanian form of his surname, into Celan in 1947.
Sometime between 1945 and 1947, he wrote a two-page prose fragment that has survived under the title ‘‘A Stylus Noiselessly Hops...’’ (1980). This work is one of many that reveal his indebtedness to surrealism. Late in 1947, Celan went to Vienna, where he joined a circle of leading avant-garde painters, writers, and publishers. His friendship with painter Edgar Jene? gave rise to a brief prose piece, ‘‘The Lance,’’ which he and Jene? wrote jointly early in 1948 and circulated on photocopied sheets to announce a reading of surrealist texts as part of an exhibition of surrealist painters in Vienna.
A second prose piece, ‘‘Edgar Jene? and the Dream of the Dream’’ (1948), written at about the same time as ‘‘The Lance,’’ purports to be a discussion of Jene?’s paintings but is actually a confessional
essay on what happens in the ‘‘deep sea’’ of the writer’s mind, the ‘‘huge crystal of the internal world’’ into which he follows Jene? and where he explores his paintings. Leaving Vienna in July 1948, Celan settled in Paris and began studies in German language and literature. In March 1949 the Swiss journal Die Tat published a collection of his brilliant but enigmatic aphorisms— quick, pithy words of wisdom—titled ‘‘Counter-Light.’’
German Translator Celan took his Licence des Lettres in 1950. In 1952 he married graphic artist Gise`le de Lestrange, with whom he had a son, Eric, who was born in 1955. Though he wrote no original prose for almost ten years, the works Celan chose to translate into German were usually prose. He never gave up German as his mother tongue, telling a friend, ‘‘Only in one’s mother tongue can one express one’s own truth. In a foreign language, the poet lies.’’ Though all of these translations reflect Celan’s unique prose style, one reveals almost more of himself than of the original: his rendering of Jean Cayrol’s prose narration for Alain Resnais’ Night and Fog (1956), a film on the Holocaust that Celan endowed with an authentic Jewish voice for German-speaking viewers.
The address he delivered upon receiving the Bremen Literary Prize in 1958 (translated in 1969) is Celan’s most personal prose work. After referring to the Bukovi-nian landscape of his youth and his acquaintance with Martin Buber’s Hasidic tales in this world ‘‘where humans and
books lived,’’ the address becomes a discussion of his relationship to the German language. This language, he says, ‘‘had to pass. . . through a frightful muting, pass through the thousand darknesses of death-bringing speech.’’ From its miraculous survival, he now attempts to write ‘‘in order to speak, to orient myself. . . to outline reality.’’
Suicide at Fifty In early May 1970, Paris officials found Celan’s body in the Seine River. He had been missing since the middle of April. Sometime before his suicide, Celan produced his final prose work, a brief address delivered to the Hebrew Writers’ Association in October 1969 during a trip to Israel; it was published in the Tel Aviv magazine Die Stimme in August 1970. In the address Celan expresses gratitude for discovering in Israel an ‘‘external and internal landscape’’ conducive to creating great poetry in the surrealist style. In his address, he compares these two landscapes: ‘‘I understand. . . the grateful pride in every homegrown green thing that stands ready to refresh anyone who comes by; just as I comprehend the joy in every newly won, self-felt word that rushes up to strengthen him who is receptive to it.’’
Works in Literary Context
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Things that I learned from Notes and Mrs. Dekelbaum’s speech From Mrs. Dekelbaum's speech, I learned that the Holocaust happened 6 years before World War 2. I learned that during the Holocaust, more than six million Jews, and four million non-Jews, were killed by the Nazis. The non-Jews that were killed in the Holocaust were, gypsies, homosexuals, disabled people, ill people, relatives of Jewish people, The Jewish question In World War I Germany thought they were going to win the war, but they didn't. Germany didn't have the right military support and weapons to win. After the war Hitler was mad because Germany didn't win the war and he blamed it on the Jews. Hitler then decided he would try to take control Historical Events of The Holocaust All throughout history, the Jewish people have been unjustly persecuted. Anti-Semitism has existed as long as the Jewish people have. Even in ancient times, the Jews were persecuted mainly because of their religious beliefs. Jews claim that they are God’s “Chosen People” and this has led to misunderstanding between Jews and Gentiles (non-Jewish people). Some What Theological Questions Relevant To The Study Of Judaism Are Raised Sample essay topic, essay writing: What Theological Questions Relevant To The Study Of Judaism Are Raised - 908 words
WHAT THEOLOGICAL QUESTIONS RELEVANT TO THE STUDY OF JUDAISM ARE RAISED BY THE HOLOCAUST? The Jewish people have always considered themselves as God's chosen people and have undergone a lot of traumatic oppression throughout their life. Evolving H Imre Kertesz BORN: 1929, Budapest, Hungary NATIONALITY: Hungarian GENRE: Fiction
Fateless (1975) Failure (1988) Kaddish for a Child Not Born (1990)
Imre Kertesz, recipient of the Nobel Prize in Literature in 2002, is a strong, independent voice in contemporary Hungarian literature. He is also a witness to the Holocaust, having survived the Auschwitz and Buchenwald concentration camps. His