The Thaw Generation
Introduction In the 1950s, 1960s, and 1970s, there was a flowering of poetry in Russia that can be compared in its scale and significance to the Silver Age of Russian poetry from the end of the nineteenth century to the early twenti- eth century. The most famous poet by far to emerge from this era was Iosif Brodsky, whose career was crowned with the accolades of Nobel Laureate (1987) and Poet Laureate of the United States of America (1991). In his Nobel Lecture, Brodsky spoke of the generation of Russian poets to which he belonged: That generation – the generation born precisely at the time when the Auschwitz cre- matoria were working full blast, when Stalin was at the zenith of his godlike, absolute power, which seemed sponsored by Mother Nature herself – that generation came into the world, it appears, in order to continue what, theoretically, was supposed to be interrupted in those crematoria and in the anonymous common graves of Stalin’s archipelago. The fact that not everything got interrupted, at least not in Russia, can be credited in no small degree to my generation, and I am no less proud of belonging to it than I am of standing here today.1 He accepted the Nobel Prize as recognition of the services that his genera- tion – and not he alone – had rendered to culture. Brodsky was one of a great number of poets who appeared in Leningrad at this time, but only a handful of his contemporaries have become at all...
You are not authenticated to view the full text of this chapter or article.
This site requires a subscription or purchase to access the full text of books or journals.
Do you have any questions? Contact us.Or login to access all content.