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To read the work of the Polish poet and 1996 Nobel Laureate Wisława Szymborska is to enter a miraculous world, a world where anything can happen, where “the unthinkable can be thought.” Szymborska lived through the horrors of WWII, the Nazi occupation, and the Soviet oppression of Poland, and in poems that are witty, subversive, and brilliantly inventive, she asserts the power of the individual in the face of a dehumanizing modernity. Our goal will be to appreciate and enjoy Szymborska’s major poems and essays and to consider the many remarkable insights they offer us. Our texts will be Poems New and Collected, translated by Stanislaw Baranczak and Clare Cavanagh, and Nonrequired Reading: Prose Pieces, translated by Clare Cavanagh.
Guide: John Brehm is the author of two books of poems, Help Is On the Way and Sea of Faith, both from the University of Wisconsin Press, and the associate editor of The Oxford Book of American Poetry. A past recipient of an Oregon Literary Fellowship from Literary Arts, he has an MFA from Cornell University and has taught at Cornell, Emerson College, and Portland State University.
Tuesdays, November 10 – December 15, 2015 6:30 – 8:30 pm (6 meetings)