Friday, January 16, 2009


It's funny, a reader of this blog just told me that there's a Parland special in a new issue of a German literary journal. In an interview in that issue, the German translator claims that I have turned Parland into George Oppen. I'm not sure where this comes from, but I suspect it's from Ron Silliman's review of Ideals Clearance (there was an article in the biggest daily paper, SvD, about my various translations that began by quoting Ron's review). I keep hearing that view from people, that my translations turn Parland into Oppen, but I just don't see it. Parland is distracted, his astrological sign is the readymade, his bride a mannequin.


Blogger Verse said...

That comparison doesn't make sense to me (though I like both Oppen and your Parland in English). There might be some superficial stylistic similarities, but there's an enormous difference in what the poems actually do.

2:18 PM  
Blogger Fran├žois Luong said...

I don't really see the Oppen/Parland connection either. Oppen/Celan, yes, but Oppen/Parland is a bit of a stretch.

2:59 PM  
Blogger Johannes said...

I don't see Oppen/Celan or Oppen/Parland or Parland/Celan. Other than that they have very short lines. Though that is maybe something. I think the Parland-Oppen connection is based on an interest in notions the Real and the objective, but their conclusions are totally different. Parland was a Dadaist.

4:27 PM  
Blogger Amish Trivedi said...

No one's anyone else.

If memory serves, you're correct in your finger pointing.

Gets a bit into our discussion on Objectivism and removal of emotion and moving towards rationality, no? It's as if by calling Parland Oppen, you've boxed him in for understanding. For Ron, if he's not boxed in somehow, he's too "out there."


9:53 AM  
Blogger Johannes said...

Well that was just an attempt to understand something that was foreign to Ron's frame of reference. We all do this to some extent more or less when we read. I just don't understand the connection.

1:10 PM  
Blogger Jordan said...

Makes you wonder how he reads Oppen, doesn't it.

3:51 PM  
Blogger Amish Trivedi said...

My frame or Ron's?

Of course we all do this, which isn't something you can avoid, but I do feel that the goal is to judge a text- regardless of the text- and label it and give it a ranking amongst the other things you have read.

10:27 PM  
Blogger Johannes said...

Yes, he's got an extremely categorizing way of looking at the world.

2:56 PM  

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