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The Meaning of Writing Modern Poetry in a/the New Century

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The Sense of an Avoided Sense

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The paper deals with the sense of writing poetry as a form of text immanence that is antinomous to the contemporary age, which is also an alternative system of thought, of transformation, of imitation and of critical redefinition of the reality of that contemporary age. At the same time, poetry is a neglected, peripheral literary genre, but also a hyperbolized fictional form that opens the way to an alternative victory of opinions and feelings. Essayistic in structure, the paper discusses several poems and the poetics of three 20th century Serbian and Yugoslav Modernists (Kosovel, Dis, Crnjanski), in order to show, on the basis of their developing and differentiated poetic self-consciousness, what sense the writing of poetry might have in the 21st century. In these instances of poetics, paradigmatic of poetic self-consciousness in general, not all the possibilities of the sense of creativity and action have been exhausted, nor the poetic solutions leading to it.

Affiliations: 1: Education Faculty, University of Belgrade, Serbia,


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1. Alen 1968: Mark Alen “Srečko Kosovel” in Delo, no 1, Belgrade, 1968.
2. Bahtin 2010: Mihail Bahtin, Rani spisi [Early Writings] , Belgrade: Službeni glasnik.
3. Vladušić 2011: Slobodan Vladušić, Crnjanski, megalopolis, Belgrade: Službeni glasnik
4. Grafenauer 2003: Niko Grafenauer “Negativni total Srečka Kosovela” in Srečko Kosovel Integrali (trans Josip Osti), Sarajevo: Asocijacija nezavisnih intelektualaca Krug 99
5. Epštejn 1998: Mihail Epštejn, Postmodernizam, trans Radmila Mečanin, Beograd: Zepter Book World
6. [Epstein, N. Mikhail, Gednis, A. And Valdiv-Glover, S. M., Russian Postmodernism: New Perspectives on Post-Soviet Culture. New York: Berghahn Books, 1999.]
7. Jerkov 2010: Aleksandar Jerkov, Smisao (srpskog) stiha [The Sense of the (Serbian) verse], Požarevac: Centar za kulturu; Beograd: Institut za književnost i umetnost
8. Levinas 2006: Emanuel Levinas, Totalitet i beskonačnost, trans Spasoje Đuzlan, Beograd: Službeni list scg; Zagreb: Demetra
9. [Levinas, Emmanuel. Totality and Infinity: An Essay on Exteriority. Hague: Martinus Nijhoff, 1979.]

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