61. évf. , 1–2. szám (2022): Antikvitás recepciók
Az Antikvitás recepciók címet viselő új lapszám időkerete jól kijelölhető: a tanulmányok a klasszikus antikvitásból eredő motívumok, toposzok, témák és alkotások 20–21. századi recepció- és hatástörténetét, újabb interpretációit és adaptációit mutatják meg a modern, valamint javarészt a kortárs magy...ar- és világirodalomban, illetve a színház világában. Az a motivikus, tematikus és poétikai varietas, amely a szerzők értelmezői munkájának eredményeként elénk tárul, az antikvitás jelenlétének a módozatait teszi láthatóvá. Nem valamiféle összképet kapunk tehát, hanem az antik örökség jelenvalóságának a sokféleségben kirajzolódó mintázatát, amelyet a korszerű irodalomtudományos elemző technikákkal feltárt értelmezések rajzolnak meg.
En Grèce, one of the early essays of Barthes published in 1944 and based on his summer trip with the Groupe de Théâtre antique of Sorbonne in 1937, is a remarkable amalgam of enthusiasm and repugnance towards Ancient and Modern Greece. The novelty of the text can be seen one part in its fragmentary way of writing which announces the future c...ourte écriture Barthesian: the sequence is formed by ten short units detached from each other, where the alternation of description and narration realizes a circle of textual islands. On the other part, the piece astonishes by its naturalistic and disrespectful tone which highly differs from traditional philhellénisme. From the Romanticism on, Greece is considered by France as the noble cradle of Western civilisation, the two countries respect each other as main sources of liberty, knowledge and arts. |is sense of kinship and mutual affinity can be detected also in the Parisian review Le voyage en Grèce published in 1934-1939 and realized by the main figures of French Avant-garde, whose view of Greece is, of course, influenced by Nietzsche as well. |e approach of young Barthes, student of classical philology, is remarkably different from this modern perception of Greece as well. |e aim of the study, focusing on the chapters Athens and Museums, Statues, is to shed light on the religious and metapoetical background of this text full of elliptic references to literary criticism and personal poetical initiation.
The circle of artists and scholars, organized around the classical philologist Károly Kerényi, occupies a special place in the intellectual life of Hungary in the 1930s. Antal Szerb, one of the most talented essayists and writers of the interwar period, also belonged to this group of friends. Szerb was heavily influenced by Kerényi’s vie...ws on ancient Greek religion and classical literature. In 1936, the writer published his analysis of the latest Western European and American novels, entitled Everyday Life and Miracles, which is partly a prelude to his 1937 novel Journey by Moonlight. e novel features a caricature of Kerényi, while the plot is in many respects a special blend of a recipe filtered from contemporary novels and ancient literary products.
The study examines the appearance of mythological point of view and ancient elements in the poems of Anna Hajnal (1907–1977). The first subchapter explores the intertextual background of her early poems written in the 1930s. Anna Hajnal often likens herself to Sappho or addresses the ancient Greek poetess. The second subchapter is concerned w...ith the appearance of ancient quantitative verses. For example, the poem Egy gyermekhez (To a Child) is an imitation of the Sapphic stanza in terms of verse form. The poetess does not consciously follow the Sapphic stanza, it only evokes her memory. The third part analyzes the mythical poems of Anna Hajnal. The poem Tavaszi himnusz (The Hymn of Spring) focuses on the goddess of the moon, who is also the goddess of fertility. The author compares The Hymn of Spring with Anna Lesznai’s poem Tavasz Isten (The God of Spring). The God of Spring rules the forces of nature as the patriarchal father-god, the goddess of spring, on the other hand, brings about change more softly.
This paper examines the relationship between the phenomenon of the neoavantgarde and the ancient tradition in representative examples of two related poetics by the emigrant poets József Bakucz (1929–1990) and László Baránszky (1930–1999). This relationship is not negation or subversive confrontation, but creative use and dialogue, which... at the same time sheds light on the creativity and motivation of neo-avantgarde gestures that formulate postmodern poetics in many ways. Both poets approached the ancient tradition with the characteristic means of neo-avantgarde poetics and created their own mythopoetic universe, within which the ancient tradition represents the ancestral patterns of textual archeology and cultural memory and is especially important as a creator of future, postmodern text generation procedures.
The reception of Sophocles’ Antigone in 20th–21st-century Hungarian literature is represented by István Eörsi’s two dramas (Hooligan Antigone; A Tragedy in Hungarian) and György Dragomán’s short story (Hangar). My paper examines how these works rewrite and reinterpret the ancient Greek drama. In the analysis, particular attention...will be paid to the political context of the theme ‘Antigone’ in Hungarian literature, and, on the one hand, to the way these texts use the poetics of dystopian space to reinterpret the history of Antigone.
Present study focuses on a less researched field of Pasolini’s oeuvre, namely his works written for the theatre. is corpus also contains the so-called six tragedies, considered the peak of his dramatic achievement. My aim is to point out in what ways Pasolini integrates certain elements of the Greek myths and tragedies into his modern theat...re, which tries to distinguish itself both from the bourgeois and the avant-garde theatre, furthermore, how these elements affect his choice of themes and dramaturgy. I attempt to identify those biographical points and important theoretical questions that led Pasolini to the Greek tragedy: from his Oresteia translation, through the six tragedies, to the appearance of such elements as the peripheries and Africa in his films, which can eventually lead to a post-colonial reading of his theatrical works.
This paper focuses on three English-speaking contemporary poets, especially on the image of the classical Latin and Greek cultures appearing in their works. In Billy Collins’ works the elements of traditional Euro-Atlantic high culture – mainly the classical antiquity, France and Italy—play an important role, alongside some echoes of Ja...panese and Chinese cultures. From a certain point of view, one can call Collins ‘a poet of poetry’, as his poems often focus on the process of writing, on the poetic effect and tradition. His particular attitude towards the ancient heritage (philosophy, architecture, art, literature, genres, tones and themes) makes Collins a sort of Horatian poet, as he seems to share—particularly in poems talking about the effect of passing time—his ancient predecessor’s melancholy, wit and irony. In the second part of the paper a book of Donald Hall is analyzed: The Museum of Clear Ideas pays homage to Horace, in particular in its second part, which is a contemporary remake of Horace’s Carmina’s whole Book I, and occasionally shows influence of social and political criticism. e third and last part of the paper is about the rather unusual book by Harry Eyres about Horace (Horace and Me). It is a kind of ‘parallel lives’, the life of ‘Harry and Horry’, as one of the book reviewers puts it. Eyres, educated in Eton and Cambridge, a poet, wine critic and cultural journalist brings Horace closer to the modern reader by analyzing and translating his poems in a fresh way, not avoiding personal approaches and modern references.
In my paper, I analyse Anne Carson’s work Nox, in which the author juxtaposes her own tragic experience of grief with her philological work on Catullus’ Poem 101. Carson presents these two types of works (i.e., mourning and translation/adaptation) as parallel but ambiguous efforts to make present what has been lost and to give voice to the...voiceless. After an interpretation of the Catullus poem, I will illustrate Carson’s understanding and practices of translation through a few examples and then describe the specific realization of the fundamental tension inherent in the genre of the elegy (the grasping of the mourned other and the possibilities of one’s own poetic utterance), and the reinterpretation of the dynamics of Catullus’ relationship with his sibling.
Contemporary English poet Alice Oswald’s Memorial (2011) is a beautiful, utterly sensitive rewriting of Homer’s Iliad. In her short introduction written to the poem, Oswald calls her work a “translation of the Iliad’s atmosphere, not its story,” openly admitting the poem’s “reckless dismissal of seven-eights of the Iliad.” Oswal...d’s adaptation is not about the heroes of the Iliad; her protagonists are the unknown soldiers going into battle in the Trojan war, dying on the battle field. It is to these soldiers that Memorial pays homage to, recalling and reciting their names, addressing them in the tradition of Greek mourning laments. The poem thus becomes an “oral cemetery” with an attempt to remember the dead. I am interested in the lyrical similes following the soldiers’ obituaries, similes that function as fissures or “openings” of the narrative, as Oswald herself calls them. I argue that the similes, which liken the dead to natural phenomena and the natural world (plants, animals), carry the function of “saving” the dead bodies of soldiers from final death, transforming them into new forms of life. This way, Oswald’s adaptation understands death as the closure of one form of life and the beginning of another, the dead men’s souls living on in new shapes of the natural world. Her repetitive similes partly take the place of the lost life narratives of the dead soldiers, and at the same time play the role of the work of mourning and carry the function of healing.
The Medea-myth, known from the Greek antiquity, has a significant amount of variants and interpretations, which have mentioned the sorceress-identity of Medea, and her transcendent-magical power attached to Helios and Hecate. The main focus of this study is the presence of magic and witchcraft in Kate Mulvany and Anne-Louise Sarks’ Medea: A R...adical New Version from the Perspective of the Children, which uses Euripides’ Medea as a source. This interpretation shows the presence of magic and Medea’s witch-identity (which eventuated the murder of her children) in a modern aspect, based on the children’s perspective, in which – leaving the mythical past behind – magic is replaced by playing (imitation of magic), magic potions and spells through chemistry, mythology through tales, and drama through mimeticdidactic, childlike role-playing, thus creating a new, modern polypharmacus-identity of Medea.
“Oresteia is of course only an alibi to make Orestes in Mosul, a frame within which completely foreign things are complimented, in which the disparate biographical realities of the actors and the context for their own interest in the Oresteia can be shown” – says Swiss director-writer Milo Rau of his own unconventional adaptation of the O...resteia. The aim of the essay is to present Rau’s working method and to recall significant trends in the staging traditions of Aeschylus’s trilogy. Subsequently, through an analysis of Rau’s performance Orestes in Mosul (2019) and its related written and audiovisual documents, I aim to provide an introduction to a possible theatrical archaeology.
A recent Hungarian novel by Imre Bartok (2020) Majmom, Vergilius [My Monkey, Virgil] constructs its text along a double system of allusions. On the one hand, it uses as an evident point of reference to Hermann Broch’s famous novel Tod des Vergils and through this novel, of course, Vergil’s Aeneid, too, and, on the other hand, narratives of...modern migration. The progress of the novel is constituted by simultaneous performances of these voices. This paper intends to show how this double characteristic of the novel’s language becomes a thought-provoking way to recast the reception of the Aeneid in Hungary.
Szilárd Borbély’s (1963–2014) collection of poems, Bukolikatájban (In a Bucolic Land), was published posthumously, eight years after the author’s death. In this collection, Borbély creates a bucolic world of his own, which is closely linked to the literary space known from his novel Nincstelenek (The Dispossessed). The aim of this s...tudy is to investigate the relationship of the collection to the oeuvre and to address the question of genre. The essay focuses on the role of the “gods”: the meaning of this word oscillates between man-gods and ‘actual’ gods, thereby creating a complex semantic game throughout the poems. By analysing the role of some specific mythological figures, the paper shows that the relationship of Borbély’s long poems to the tradition of idyll is ambivalent.