La poesia polacca in Italia (1991-2021)


Parole chiave:

Polish poetry, Italian-Polish contacts, translation studies, Polish Book Institute


The timeline of the presence of Polish poetry in Italy in the period 1991-2021 can be divided into two spans of equal length. Up until 2006, the scene is dominated by the masters of the second half of the twentieth century, Zbigniew Herbert, Czeslaw Milosz, Tadeusz Rózewicz and Wislawa Szymborska, albeit with various publishing fortunes. Since 2006, some new directions have been observed. Italian translators and publishers began to benefit from the support of the Book Institute (an organisation inaugurated by the government in 2004 to promote Polish books abroad), further stimulated by the arrival of a poet, Jaroslaw Mikolajewski, as director of the Polish Institute in Rome in 2006. This led to the translation and publication of many works of Polish literature in Italy. In particular, many poets who were young at the time (bom after I960) flourished. At the same time important gaps were also gradually beginning to be filled, a process that can only be said to be almost complete in recent years. Indeed, since late 2010s translators and publishers have finally started to turn to Renaissance and 19th century poetry, with the publication or re-edition of important works by Jan Kochanowski (also from Latin) and Adam Mickiewicz (see for instance Pan Tadeusz). As far as twentieth-century poetry is concerned, discrete attention has been paid to the poets of Nowa Fala (of particular note are the italian successes of Adam Zagajewski and Ewa Lipska), but pre-World War II poetry remains almost unknown.A separate discourse should be made for Karol Wojtyla, the popular pope who, at least until his death in 2005, saw his poems reprinted several times in Italy, and especially for Szymborska, whose fortunes in Italy have been quite exceptional and always on the rise since being awarded the Nobel Prize in 1996. The article gives an account of the books published during the thirty-year period, presenting and analysing data and also focusing on the work of translators and publishers; it also shows the importance of other channels for the dissemination of Polish poetry during the thirty-year period: blogs, newspapers, magazines, festivals, etc. Some hints are also made about the presence of Polish poetry in the works of Italian authors (poets, writers, musicians). Finally, the author outlines some working hypotheses for translators, scholars and publishers in the coming years.






Sezione monografica