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A Bridge Taken for a Wall, a Wall Taken for a Bridge: On Persian Art, Poetry, and Translation

Event Recap

December 7, 2017 - 6:30pm to 8:30pm
Jahan Ramazani
Event Sponsor: 
Hamid and Christina Moghadam Program in Iranian Studies, Taube Center for Jewish Studies, Department of English and Creative Writing Program
Picture of Jahan Ramadan

Jahan Ramazani is University Professor and Edgar F. Shannon Professor of English at the University of Virginia. He is currently writing a book on poetry in a global age. This talk on poetry, art, and East-West translation ranges from ancient Iran to medieval Byzantium and the Abbasid era to modern Iran and Ireland.

The lecture is in three parts. The first looks at the Persian artistic influences via Byzantium on a modern Irish poet that have passed largely unrecognized (a bridge taken for a wall). The second looks at a Persian poet whose accessibility in English translation has perhaps been overestimated (a wall taken for a bridge). The third attempts a synthesis in another Persian poet who can help us think about culture as both bridge and wall. After exploring poems by Yeats, Rumi, and Behbahani, the lecture reflects on "world" poetry and translation, and it offers suggestions for the uses of a global comparative frame for lyric poetry.

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Building 320, room 105

Event is in English. Event is free and open to the public. 

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