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06 10 29 - The poets’ interviews to France Culture Radio will be broadcast on November 12.
Una antologia bilingue della poesia armena contemporranea, opera di 20 poeti armeni dell'Armenia e della diaspora, è stata pubblicata recentemente in Francia a cura dal poeta francese Stephane Juranics.......
Dal 6 all'11 ottobre tre dei poeti hanno avuto incontri con i lettori francesi in numerose citta francesi.....
Una intervista ai poeti armeni sarà trasmessa il 12 Novembre alla Radio France Culture .....

Poetic Perspective: New anthology shows changes in mood at home, abroad
By Vahan Ishkhanyan
ArmeniaNow reporter
An anthology of modern Armenian poetry entitled Avis de Recherche (Wanted) including works by 20 Armenia-based and Diaspora poets was published in France recently. On this occasion three of the authors of the anthology held meetings with French readers in several cities and towns in France on October 6-11.

This bilingual (Armenian-French) anthology was published by the Parentheses Publishing House in 2,000 copies and was financially assisted by the Books Committee of the Ministry of Culture of France, which funds books of cultural value that aren’t expected to have commercial success.

{ai181001.jpg|left}In Yerevan it can be purchased at the Artbridge bookstore cafe.

Unlike previous anthologies published in French, which were compiled by the subjective taste of some poet and translation became part of that poet’s work, Avis de Recherche is a collective work, and the poems were selected by Armenia-based poetry translator Nune Abrahamyan, poet Marine Petrosyan and Sorbonne University lecturer, writer Krikor Beledian, and poetry translation was done by French poet Stephane Juranics.

It is said in the preface by Juranics “No longer enjoying state support, these poets enjoy complete creative freedom, which is shown in most different directions and experiments. Fundamentally reconsidering the notion of literary text, they turn, as Marine Petrosyan puts it, to non-normative language, i.e. a language that breaks old literary and oral norms, but pursues no goal of installing new norms and enjoys its status of being ‘out of norm’ as a literary task.”

Krikor Beledian, said that in compiling the anthology they made sure all of its authors were born after World War II.

If such an anthology were published 20 years ago, then probably Diaspora poetry would express more protest (connected with the genocide), and Armenian poetry would express optimistic patriotism or filled with allegories. Now the picture is opposite.

The works by Armenia-based poets are more social, with moods of despair and discomfort once caused by the former Soviet reality and then by the controversies of independent Armenia. They sometimes express themselves with humor, like in the poems of the oldest author, 61-year-old Hovhannes Grigoryan, the book title is borrowed from one of his poems: the French equivalent of police “Wanted” announcements, in which the author writes: “At the end of the 20th century, at 4.15 pm/the Armenian people went out of their homeland and did not return…/those who see them/ immediately report to the parliament/ which needs people for a few days/for new elections”), sometimes playing on love feelings, like in the poem by Violet Grigoryan: “In this city, my love/ even butterflies do not die for light,/ they always get away with slight burns.” And lastly begins only to interest, like in Ashot Khachatryan’s: “And who will pay to my dissector”. And Diaspora poets like pun, innovative or personal, a poetry of asocial experiences. And if again there is reconciliation with reality, then it is connected with Armenia, like in Vehanush Tekyan’s lines: “My country is sad, as I am not there.”

The International Poetry Center of Marseilles (CIPM), which periodically organizes meetings with poets from different countries, invited poets Marine Petrosyan, Armen Shekoyan and Violet Grigoryan on the occasion of the anthology. They presented their poems in Marseilles and several other cities.

“It was an interesting situation for me that after quitting poetry I was acting as a poet,” says Armen Shekoyan, (see ???) who hasn’t written poetry for five years, but switched to writing prose. “In the past I either did not recite my works, or when they forced me to I got excited from reciting, now I recited very freely, like an actor, when I read others’ works.”

Violet Grigoryan says that unlike her previous literary tours abroad when Armenian writers and poets met within the Diaspora environment discussing problems of preserving the nation and other national issues, now they had contacts with French literary circles interested in literary issues.

The poets’ interviews to France Culture Radio will be broadcast on November 12.


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