PN Review Print and Online Poetry Magazine
News and Notes
PNR266 Now Available
The latest issue of PN Review is now available to read online. read more
Most Read... Eavan BolandA Lyric Voice at Bay
(PN Review 121)
Vahni CapildeoOn Judging Prizes, & Reading More than Six Really Good Books
(PN Review 237)
Tim Parksin conversation with Natalia Ginzburg
(PN Review 49)
M. Wynn ThomasThe Other Side of the Hedge
(PN Review 239)
Jamie OsbornIn conversation with Sasha Dugdale
(PN Review 240)
Drew MilneTom Raworth’s Writing ‘present past improved’: Tom Raworth’s Writing
(PN Review 236)
Next Issue Stav Poleg Running Between Languages Jeffrey Meyers on Mr W.H. (Auden) Miles Burrows The Critic as Cleaning Lady Timothy Ades translates Brecht, Karen Leeder translates Ulrike Almut Sandig
Poems Articles Interviews Reports Reviews Contributors
PNR 250 Poetry Archive Banner
PN Review New Issue

This report is taken from PN Review 154, Volume 30 Number 2, November - December 2003.

Diary from Poland David Kennedy

In States of Fantasy, a searching account of literary studies and nation, Jacqueline Rose poses some uncomfortable questions about translation: 'Who passes into English? Who decides? And at whose expense?' Rose's questions were very much on my mind as I flew into Warsaw one Saturday in May this year as a guest at a British Council supported symposium 'Cultural Identities' at the University of Ló^dz. Some of my poems were being translated into Polish for the first time and, together with Nuala Ni Dhomhnail, Douglas Dunn and Menna Elfyn, I was cast as a representative of aspects of British and Irish poetry. Translation, Rose goes on, is 'part of a mythmaking process, framing and binding our access to what we like to think of today as a wider, more inclusive literary and cultural world'.

Our arrival seemed to write us not into myth but into history. A news report I watched in my room at the Europejski Hotel told me the weekend marked the seventieth anniversary of Nazi book burning. The weekend was also the final, fevered phase of pro- and anti- campaigns for the referendum on Poland's EU membership. This was hard to put together with the view as our plane had come into land: large arable areas clearly organised on a strip system of land ownership. The tangible presence of history and a sense of Poland as a continuing resurrection of and rebirth from the past was underlined by a three hour guided tour of ...

Searching, please wait... animated waiting image