lyrikline blog

Poetry from Burundi

Posted in Adams Sinarinzi by Heiko Strunk on 20. April 2016

Presenting poetry from Burundi is not an easy task. T.S. Eliot seemed to think true poetry is hardly translated, and one needs to truly sense where those words are from. Until the emergence of the modern, there was no need of presentingpoetry, for poetry was part of life.

….do you feel her drive?
Look at his eyes,
Do you read his verse? 
[1]

But the unity of life, some will say, was lost with the last myth and cosmic societies, that Burundi belonged to until a century ago. Dissolved by the increasing requirements of the modern world, several separate and independent spheres were born. One of them, the arts and culture, has grown (often unwillingly) to acquire the function of precisely representing the lost unity.

Beyond their powers to express the various contradictions and sensitivities, the world literature offers us symbolic levers for an understanding and appropriation of our lives. The young contemporary Burundian literature is best understood in this context, which is of an attempt to understand its environment and express its sensibility to the world.

In his academic book La Littérature de langue française au Burundi, [2] Professor J. Ngorwanubusa of the University of Burundi regrets however the few avenues for the literature of Burundi. There is barely any publishing house; a few reviews had been existing in the 1960s and 1970s but never survived except a few Christian reviews run by a few members of the Burundi Catholic Church.

samandari_10_SW.jpg

But the interested literary person won’t miss the corners behind the central market where the old (often stolen!) books are sold, the oldest book storeLibrairie St Paul, or the French cultural center (whose interesting café hosts the unfortunately more and more penniless intellectuals in the city!) and of course the newly opened Lire Africa in Gallerie Alexander, specializing in fiction from Africa. A blog by the poet Thierry Manirambona (“la plume burundaise”) lists an impressive archeology of Burundian books old and new, and a few poets do publish their poetry  directly on the internet as the acclaimed Ketty Nivyabandi.

Poetry in print might be hard to find in the country, but if you are insisting you will discover the underground intellectual and literary scene of the marvelous Café literaire Samandari that meets every Thursday evening at the Burundi Palace right in the middle of the city center. But one should say they met there, for since a year now these meetings are no longer held. (more…)

Map of a Thousand Lives – A Brief Introduction to Poetry in Malaysia

Posted in about us, Latiff Mohidin by lyrikline on 18. April 2016

By Pauline Fan

An attempt to chart the origins and evolution of modern poetry in Malaysia unearths complex historical processes and cultural interactions that have shaped contemporary Malaysian society. To speak of the writing of poetry in Malaysia, one must grapple with – or at least try to imagine – the essentially pluralist and polyglot nature of its people as well as the changing socio-cultural landscape, where “the map of a thousand lives will be seen* ”.

Malaysia is a country where at least four main languages predominate – Malay, English, Chinese and Tamil, further punctuated by a multitude of dialects and colloquialisms according to clan or region. The multicultural and multilingual population of the Malay Peninsula has been evident since at least the 15th century, when the Sultanate of Malacca rose to become one of the most thriving entrepôts in Asia, drawing merchants, scholars, and envoys from neighbouring kingdoms and faraway empires alike. Successive waves of immigrants from all over the Malay Archipelago, China, and India – some of whom settled, intermarried, and formed new distinct communities and cultures such as the peranakan or Straits-born communities – added yet more layers to the inextricable diversity of Malaysian society.

The conquest of Malacca by Portuguese (1511) and Dutch (1641) imperial powers preceded British colonial control, and later the Japanese occupation, of the Malay Peninsula and the northern provinces of Borneo.  Each of these imperialist presences left an indelible mark on the cultural landscape of Malaysia, including on the Malay language in the case of Portuguese, Dutch and English, adding to the vast compendium of loanwords in Malay from Arabic, Persian, Sanskrit, Tamil, and Chinese. The Malay language served as a lingua franca for the Malay Archipelago for centuries, and forms the basis of the standardised national languages of both Malaysia (Bahasa Malaysia) and Indonesia (Bahasa Indonesia), mutually intelligible with some differences in vocabulary and spelling.

Oral traditions and pan-Malay poets

The origins of Malay-language poetry can be traced to the vast and various oral traditions that have been cradled in the Malay Archipelago as well as classical Malay texts known as Hikayat that date back as far as the 14th century. Traditional Malay poetic forms include the syair, the pantun, the gurindamand seloka, all of which are found in both oral and written literature. While traditional or classical, many of these poetic forms are intrinsically innovative, urging improvisation and spontaneous composition. The pantun, for instance, was sometimes performed as balas pantun, a call-and-response ‘duel’ or ‘flirtation’ between two poets, especially during performances of the Dondang Sayang (love ballads) of Malacca. (more…)

New partners in the lyrikline.org network / Neue Partner im lyrikline.org Netzwerk

Posted in about us by Heiko Strunk on 16. June 2011

The network of partners of lyrikline.org has expanded. We welcome our partners in Iceland, Lithuania, Russia and China

Das Partnernetzwerk von lyrikline.org ist größer geworden. Wir begrüßen unsere Partner in Island, Litauen, Russland und China

Iceland/Island : Bókmenntasjóður – The Icelandic Literature Fund (Reykjavik)
Lithuania/Litauen: Koperator – Tarptautinių kultūros programų centras – The International Cultural Programme Centre (Vilnius)
Russia/Russland
: Новая литературная карта России – New Literary Map of Russia (Moskau)
China: DJS Art Foundation [private foundation to support poetry and arts] (Los Angeles)

Welcome!

AbsoluteVille is the new Italian Partner

Posted in about us, Lello Voce by Heiko Strunk on 30. September 2010

Pordenonelegge – a literature festival in the north of Italy with hundreds of writers and thousands of visitors…. and lyrikline.org right in the middle!

As lyrikline.org’s project manager, I was invited to take part in a round table about poetry and New Media on September 19 and to present lyrikline.org itself.  The discussion was hosted by Lello Voce,  an Italian poet,  editor and artistic director of the AbsolutePoetry Festival.
In the scope of this event Lello Voce announced that AbsoluteVille will be  the new partner for Italy in the international network of lyrikline.org.

AbsoluteVille is the website that bundles many activities centered around the AbsolutePoetry Festival:  E-Zine, authors’ blogs, theoretic discussions, and of course the festival itself.

This new network partner aims to strengthen the presence of Italian poetry on our poetic world map lyrikline.org.

We are looking forward to this cooperation!

If you are residing in Italy, maybe in Monfalcone region, you have the chance to attend the AbsolutePoetry Festival. It began just yesterday, on September 29 and will last until October 2. Here you’ll find the programme of AbsolutePoetry Festival.

– – – –

AbsoluteVille ist neuer Partner in Italien

Am 19.9. fand im Rahmen des Festivals Pordenonelegge (Pordenone, Italien) ein Runder Tisch zum Thema Poesie und Neue Medien statt, zu dem ich als Projektleiter von lyrikline.org eingeladen war, um u.a. ebendort die Website zu präsentieren.

Moderiert wurde die Veranstaltung von Lello Voce, Dichter, Herausgeber und künstlerischer Leiter des  AbsolutePoetry Festivals.

Auf der Bühne gab Lello Voce bekannt, dass AbsoluteVille der neue Partner für Italien im internationalen Netzwerk von lyrikline.org sein wird. AbsoluteVille ist als Website der Ort und das Label, das viele Aktivitäten einer sehr lebendigen Poesieszene rund um das Festival AbsolutePoetry bündelt: E-Zine, diverse Autoren-Blogs, Theoriediskussionen und natürlich das Festival selbst.

Italien und die italienische Poetenschaft auf der poetischen Weltkarte lyrikline stärker abzubilden, das hat sich unser neuer italienischer Netzwerkpartner nun zur Aufgabe gemacht.

Wir freuen uns auf die Zusammenarbeit!

Gerade in diesen Tagen findet vom 29.9.-2.10.2010 das diesjährige Absolute Poetry Festival statt.  Wer also in der Region Monfalcone unterwegs ist, sollte mal vorbeischauen.

Lello Voce on lyrikline.org

Italian news…

Pordenonelegge – a literature festival in the north of Italy with hundreds of writers and thousands of visitors…. and lyrikline.org right in the middle!

Heiko Strunk, lyrikline.org project manager traveled to the festival for an event on September 19 to speak about poetry and New Media and to present lyrikline.org itself.

The whole town of Pordenone was full of literature and Heiko not only met Michael Ondaatje there but also attended an event with Art Spiegelman.

Moreover the stay in Italy led to the second good news which is, that a new partner for Italy in the international network of lyrikline.org signed the partner contract.

It’s the institution / website AbsoluteVille, an active source of information and activities centered around the festival AbsolutePoetry. An E-Zine, authors’ blogs, theoretic discussions, and of course the festival itself are displayed: http://www.absolutepoetry.org

This new network partner, represented in person by Lello Voce, aims to strengthen the presence of Italian poetry on our poetic world map lyrikline.org.

We are looking forward to this cooperation!

If you are residing in Italy, maybe in Monfalcone region, you have the chance to attend the AbsolutePoetry Festival. It began just yesterday, on September 29 and will last until October 2.

Neuer Partner in Italien

Am 19.9. fand im Rahmen des Festivals Pordenonelegge (Pordenone, Italien) ein Runder Tisch zum Thema Poesie und Neue Medien statt. Mit dabei war auch Heiko Strunk, Projektleiter von lyrikline.org, der zuvor ebendort die Website präsentieren konnte.

Italien und die italienische Poetenschaft auf der poetischen Weltkarte lyrikline stärker abzubilden, das hat sich unser neuer italienischer Netzwerkpartner zur Aufgabe gemacht: AbsoluteVille ist als Website der Ort und das Label, das viele Aktivitäten einer sehr lebendigen Poesieszene rund um das Festival AbsolutePoetry bündelt: E-Zine, diverse Autoren-Blogs, Theoriediskussionen und natürlich das Festival selbst. (http://www.absolutepoetry.org)

Wir freuen uns auf die Zusammenarbeit!

Absolute [YOUNG] Poetry

vom 29.9.-2.10