Reference : Van het klassieke China naar het moderne Amsterdam: oosterse invloeden in de poëzie v...
Scientific congresses and symposiums : Unpublished conference/Abstract
Arts & humanities : Literature
Van het klassieke China naar het moderne Amsterdam: oosterse invloeden in de poëzie van Hans Faverey
Dieu, Véronique mailto [Université de Liège - ULiège > Département des langues et littératures modernes > Département des langues et littératures modernes >]
Colloque Achter de verhalen
du 26 mars au 28 mars 2014
Université Libre de Bruxelles
[en] Intertextuality ; Chinese philosphy ; Dutch poetry
[en] That a modern Dutch poet should have found inspiration in Classical Chinese poetry and philosophy may seem rather unlikely. Yet, the contents of his personal library and a number of statements made in interviews reveal how Hans Faverey (1933-1990) had a great interest in oriental literature, art and thought (especially Taoism and Buddhism). Although many articles have been devoted to the use and function of intertext in Faverey’s poetry, scant attention has been paid to the possible influence of Chinese philosophers and poets on his work. I will argue that Faverey’s obsession with themes like emptiness, stillness and silence may be interpreted as an attempt to integrate some fundamental Taoist and Buddhist ideas into his writing. Taking Faverey’s oriental library as my starting point, and contextualizing it with reference to Tang dynasty poets such as Wang Wei and Li Shang-Yin, and quotations from Kung Sun Lung and the School of Names, I aim to shed a clearer light on those possible connections.

The first part of my paper will focus on a number of general concepts from Chinese literature and philosophy, and discuss how Faverey assimilated these concepts into his own poems. The second part of my presentation will be devoted to a comparison between the Tao as text and a selection of Faverey’s work in order to highlight possible parallels in their use of symbols and imagery. Since Faverey, as a poet, was constantly working with and thinking about the written word, he may have been struck not only by Chinese philosophy itself but also by the way in which these thoughts had found their expression in language. The structure of the Chinese language and its penchant for paradoxical turns of phrase may have held an additional appeal for the Amsterdam poet, renowned for his pithy, hermetic writing style that abounds in paradoxes and uncommon allusions.
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