Litkicks Message Board Archive

Paul Celan (1920-1970)

Posted to WritersAndGenres

Paul Celan (Paul Antschel) was born in Romania but spent most of his life in Germany. A Jew terrorized and persecuted by the Nazis, Paul Celan wrote perhaps the most famous poem on the Holocaust, "Todesfuge" (Death Fugue).

Celan's work is difficult and abstract but shot through with burning originality and genius. The fact that he wrote in the language of his oppressors (German) is remarkable in itself.

John Felstiner has written a remarkable book about him :
" Paul Celan: Poet, Survivor, Jew" which I recommend for anyone beginning to read Paul Celan.

Here is a URL for more information on the Internet about PC:

In 1970, at the age of 50, Paul Celan committed suicide by jumping into the river Seine.