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Title: The making of a poem: Rainer Maria Rilke, Stephen Spender, and Yang Mu
Authors: Wong, Lisa Lai-Ming
Keywords: Poetry
Rainer Maria Rilke
Stephen Spender
Yang Mu
Issue Date: May-2007
Citation: The Comparatist, v. 31, May 2007, p. 130-147
Abstract: One of the formidable challenges for comparatists today is the reconfiguration of Goethe's term Weltliteratur (1827) in the age of globalization. In analyzing the making of world poetry, Stephen Owen raised a point about the negative effects of Western influence on modern Chinese poetry in his essay 'The Anxiety of Global Influence: What Is World Poetry?' (1990). He suspected that Bei Dao had been selling 'the state's brutality' and 'the suffering of oppression' in China to the West in a highly translatable language (Owen,'Anxiety' 29). In so doing, the poet sacrificed poetry to his own self-interest. Owen's views about the loss of culture and the decline in contemporary poetry from mainland China aroused heated debates and were harshly criticized, most notably by Michelle Yeh and Rey Chow.
Rights: Reprinted with permission from The University of North Carolina Press.
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