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Dan Pagis


I am doing a thesis on Holocaust poetry and am looking for critical material on the poet Dan Pagis that is written in English. If anyone knows of any articles that have been written I would appreciate it if you could give me the references.

Harry W. Mazal OBE answers:

I am one of the persons who responds to questions sent to the Holocaust History Project. There are a number of resources that you might want to investigate for your research on Dan Pagis. The following web-sites are a good place to start:

  • http://www.biu.ac.il/HU/tr/anne0518.html#publications

    Anne Birkenhauer has recently published a study.

  • http://www.writer.org/pac/pac23.htm

    Dan Pagis -- Transformations. This major Israeli poet reads his work in both English (trans. by Stephen Mitchell) and Hebrew. Recorded at the Harvard Poetry Room. Watershed, 1979. 51 mins. Order No. C-1139 -- $13.95.

  • http://www.cesjds.org/course.htm

    Students in these courses are exposed to original Hebrew literature. They study different literary styles, such as poetry, prose, short stories, a novel, articles, etc. Students read works by Y.L. Peretz, Rahel, Lea Goldberg, Zelda, Amichay, Amos Oz, Natan Shahar, Natan Shaham and Dan Pagis. In addition students develop their writing skills, critical analysis and reading comprehension skills. They are also exposed to the Jewish/Israeli experience.

  • http://www.dowco.com/gor_books/worldliterature/jewish.html

    The Selected Poetry of Dan Pagis (Literature of the Middle East)
    Usually ships in 24 hours Dan Pagis, et al / Paperback / Published 1996
    Our Price: $14.95

  • http://www.poets.org/poets/aap/prog/landon.htm

    Harold Morton Landon Translation Award

    This $1,000 award recognizes a published translation of poetry from any language into English. Founded in 1976, the award was originally biennial. It has been given annually since 1984. A noted translator chooses the winning book.

    Year: 1990
    Translator: Stephen Mitchell
    Book: Variable Directions, Dan Pagis
    Judge: Serge Gavronsky

  • http://users.aimnet.com/~upb/upb1/vault/old/O10_96.html

    Pagis, Dan, The Selected Poetry of Dan Pagis. Univ of California Press, Paper $14.95.

  • http://www.hum.huji.ac.il/contempdp.htm

    Jewish Themes in Contemporary Literature

    The division offers a study program in comparative Jewish literature, encompassing comparative studies of modern Jewish literature as an imaginative discourse on the Jewish experience. Publications include a book on the Holocaust and the literary imagination and numerous articles on reflections of the Holocaust in Israeli culture generally and specifically in the writings of S.Y. Agnon, Aharon Appelfeld and Dan Pagis. A book on the articulations of displacement, exile, territoriality and homecoming in the modern Jewish imagination is being prepared.

  • http://www.brown.edu/Departments/Judaic_Studies/faculty/jacob.html

    Biographical information for David C. Jacobson. Papers Delivered at Academic Conferences:

    1977 - "The Holocaust Survivor in Israeli Poetry: Dan Pagis," Symposium on Trends in Contemporary Israeli Literature, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, Michigan.

  • http://www.israel-mfa.gov.il/facts/culture/lit/pagis.html

    Dan Pagis was born in Bukovina in 1930. During World War II he was interned for several years in a concentration camp. In 1946 he immigrated and began to teach school on a kibbutz. He received his Ph.D from the Hebrew University in Jerusalem, where he was later made professor of medieval Hebrew literature. His publications include important studies on the aesthetics of medieval secular poetry, as well as a critical edition of David Vogel's collected verse. He died in Jerusalem in 1986.

    Called "a poet of the unspeakable" much of Dan Pagis' best-known work deals with the Holocaust, but, in the words of Robert Alter "his imaginative landscape extends from the grim vistas of genocide to the luminous horizon of the medieval Iberian peninsula." Writing in Hebrew only four years after his arrival in Israel, Pagis helped bring a more natural colloquial norm to Hebrew poetry. There is an element of distance to Pagis' work, through which he conveys a sense of horror while avoiding "the shrillness of hysteria." Drawing on biblical texts and centuries-old mysticism, he gives voice to the experience of a generation. His work has been described as "a poetry of allusion," his sorrrow frequently hiding behind irony and plays on words. Shulamith Hareven says of Dan Pagis, "his work has the discipline of the adult and the freshness of the child: his compassion brings tears to one's eyes."

  • http://www.wam.umd.edu/~jasonsc/Pagis.html

    The Life and Times of Dan Pagis

  • http://sachair.ucsc.edu/judaism/Fall96.html

    Judaism: A Quarterly Journal of Jewish Life and Thought Issue No. 180 / Volume 45 / Number 4 / Fall 1996.
    Dan Pagis and the Poetry of Displacement, Robert Alter

  • http://www.jewishculture.org/writers/about/bios/ezrachi.html

    Sidra Ezrahi teaches at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem and has written broadly in the areas of comparative Jewish literature. Following her study of the literary reflections of the Holocaust, By Words Alone, she wrote on the poetry of Paul Celan and Dan Pagis, the prose of S.Y. Agnon and Aharon Appelfeld and theoretical questions of representation at the limits of human experience. Her book on exile and homecoming in the modern Jewish imagination, Booking Passage, will appear in 1998 from University of California Press.

I hope that these few leads will help you find the information that you are seeking.

Harry W. Mazal OBE

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