Members comments:

 =  questions
Diana Todea
[29.Dec.08 09:21]
It sounds really interesting. Reading the article in Romanian, I saw all kinds of disputes and opinions. But my question is a concrete one: Do we have already a sample or an author that promotes this literary current? We have an apriori base for Boyarism, in order to sustain this manifesto? Or is it just an intent of defining a literary current, based on aesthetic judgments and literary ambitions, but without a content so far?
I can say that the answer to these questions are similar important with the status of the Boyarism manifesto. In order to have a current, we must have subscribers to the current, and of course by this I mean writers who qualify for it. It sounds interesting though in theory. Cheers from Diana Todea.

 =  answ
Marius Surleac
[29.Dec.08 10:47]
Diana, this manifesto is more like a burst to clear the dirty pathways of Romanian literature, to build a well developed new area or better to say to sculpt in a better shape, a smooth and qualitative one. The "Boyarism" wants to focus the objective of literature to a more elegant level, as a noble one (strongly sustained by the characteristics of a boyar but also by the content of the text). I don't know if we can talk about an “a priori” base for this because "apriori" is used wrong here – we’ll have to wait an “a posteriori” result for this.

About the writers that strongly sustain this manifesto, you can find in the body of the text writers that are very qualified for, like Felix Nicolau, Paul Bogdan, Marius Solea and others that supported this manifesto on and different Romanian literary web pages. The manifesto was published as well in the Convorbiri Literare magazine.

 =  qualitative literature
Diana Todea
[29.Dec.08 11:31]
Yes, I think that an a posteriori effect is expected. And also the Romanian literature must be induced to a qualitative path of work, because we cannot call "literature" a sum of dirty words and fake ideas. In this sense, Boyarism should be the next literary current that respects certain aesthetic rules and also a vision. Thanks for the answer.

 =  .
Marius Surleac
[29.Dec.08 22:57]
Diana, you're right.


 =  A manifesto with bravado...
John Willy Kopperud
[30.Dec.08 16:02] refreshing gusts of wind to the face. I like the attitude here. Getting more in touch with Romania's literary identity? Yes, I can fathom the need
for that. And who needs poor rhymes in English? Just one thing, though. For a writer the full mastery of another language may be a step towards great literature. Vladimir Nabokov studied, as far as I can remember, English parallel
to his moving to the U.S. "Lolita" as well as his autobiography are, in my eyes, truly masterpieces. By fully
entering another language and letting go the psychology of
your native tongue, you may gain considerable skills.
Good luck with your literary movement, Romanian Boyars!
Cheers from Willy

 =  contradictory
Diana Todea
[30.Dec.08 16:43]
Yes, Willy, totally understandable. But that's the issue: we need our own literature, in Romanian mainly, to define our status within our country. Of course for writers emigrating elsewhere the only choice is to write in the host country's language. We need to build our own literary identity in the 21 century, just because too much "outside" is utilized in our literary field. Not that is anything wrong with it, but is only a second option, not the first one. Cheers, Diana.

 =  No contradiction, Diana!
John Willy Kopperud
[30.Dec.08 17:00]
I fully see the point of defining Romanian literature within Romania. My pointing to Nabokov may be regarded as a sidetrack. But then again I beleieve sidetracks may be useful.
By converting wholeheartedly to another language (in the writing process) you may get to places - artistically speaking - that you'd never seen otherwise.
Cheers from Willy

 =  where is the beef?
ion a
[30.Dec.08 17:37]
the original article was published more than a year ago on this site, and enjoyed a lukewarm reception. the main objection against it was: the manifesto is fine but where are the boyarist texts? when you go against "this vassalage toward the American poetry" you should have a few samples of would-be replacements of at least equal value. instead, Rorty (another american) is mentioned in the next paragraph. bty, boyarism principles seem to ignore the 3rd tenet of ironism which is: an ironist shouldn't think that his vocabulary is closer to reality than others...

sure, imitating Bukowski is passé, but where is "the latest and greatest", or at least "the new and improved"?

in computer circles, such a thing would be called "vaporware": a company trying to push some new software that looks great on paper, has all the features a customer would ever want, but it doesn't exist yet.

the boyarism manifesto really looks more like a pamphlet directed against the so called "millennium" poets, a loose group of romanian poets, many of whom are adept at scandal and shocking the public through rough, vulgar language. it might have been better to stick to this intention and let first a body of work suggest some future structure.

 =  who knows
felix nicolau
[30.Dec.08 19:33]
i think YOU should come with some instances. at the time, this manifesto was understood as a guiding text and an opposition stand, too. i don't have time to resume the analysis after one year. it's hardly been created a group around it. that's why i don't have the energy to go on analyzing it.maybe a younger fellow

 =  answers...
Marius Surleac
[30.Dec.08 21:00]
Willy, you came with a very interesting opinion about this and somehow you are right. There is a lot of work to do with this manifesto, from what I see but if the threads are well anchored, I think we will succeed somehow. If we can't do all that is to be found in the manifesto, at least to do something. About the skills, you're absolutely right and any experience deserves to be accomplished.

Diana, I have understood Willy perfectly well and you're both right, there's no contradiction at all.

Ion, I think that "this vassalage toward the American poetry" - in its original shape of the manifesto, came not like an extremist action against the American poetry but more like a reaction towards the "Americanism" that is to be found at many of the Romanian writers - the idea of writing, the shape, the quality is not so good as previous years of Romanian literature - from my own point of view. The bad thing with this manifesto was that many of the Romanian writers on Agonia and not only, perceived it bad and acted against it. They did not understood, from what I saw, that this manifesto proposes a sort of cleanliness in the Romanian literature, an improvement and creating a level were only those that have qualitative texts can pass further. This "boyarism" doesn't mean that we'll create a new literary style, but more, has the purpose to open our eyes and must lead us to write qualitative poetry, elegant one and has to be sustain by characteristics similar to a boyar's characteristics. Many understood the name of "boyarism" like a devolution, like turning back to what past used to be - this way of thinking is bad.
I think you know very well what happens within the Romanian literature on many literary web pages.

I’m not in the first promoters of this manifesto, but this is the way I see it and when Felix will have time probably will have a more wide discussion on this. If I’m wrong with all that I said above, Felix please shall correct me.

Best wishes to all,

 =  Objections
Corina Gina Papouis
[31.Dec.08 12:28]
Marius, poetry is art, 'art is the process or product of deliberately and creatively arranging elements in a way that appeals to the senses or emotions' (I picked a Wikipedia definition). I understand the etiquette of writing is important, but when art has too many rules/ suggestions/ regulators/ parameters/ focuses it becomes a business plan.

The manifesto is planning to lead people towards better writing, to enlighten us and this is mostly appreciated IF written to everybody who writes in Romanian, however, changing directions or even stirring the wheel of such a big crowd is a difficult task! The use of words should be reviewed here: “WE MUST SAY NO” – sounds far too familiar. People still remember the ‘golden era’. (and this is just one example).

Diana Todea – "Of course for writers emigrating elsewhere the only choice is to write in the host country's language". I write in both Romanian and English. The thought of ‘the only choice’ I have when I write ‘thrills’ me, really!!!! (Please review that comm!)

Willy brought an interesting point here, the person developing (not just) as a writer in a foreign land becomes a hybrid of his/ her new life experience (I’m holding my hand up here!). This is not just me, people need to get used to a multicultural community of writing, you can not exclude or include people, they will do it themselves as they consider fit.

We are done with labelling aren’t we? Boxing people and telling them what, when and how to do it!

To conclude with a plead: Please review the manifesto, the picture is a lot bigger.

Boyarism – yes, communism – no, not again!

 =  errr
Corina Gina Papouis
[31.Dec.08 12:35]
plea that was..

 =  Corina....
Marius Surleac
[31.Dec.08 13:12]
Corina, this is not "the only" choice. Indeed is very hard to improve and to move something to such a big crowd, but we must try - this is the manifesto for (meant to give an impulse) - what other solution can you find to open the eyes a bit.

What should I review in this manifesto; I have just translated it, not write!

Also, where did you come with this idea of communism? You've misunderstood it!


 =  Marius:)
Corina Gina Papouis
[31.Dec.08 15:42]
Marius, I’m not having a go at you (it’s New Year’s Eve)! My debate is concerning the Manifesto! It is not personal! (Your name is under it, though! That makes you accountable for your words and actions!!!!:))))

The Manifesto was written from one angle and that angle appears to be quite narrow.

The search for the purity of Romanian language and writing style needs to start in primary school, (what am I saying?) at home, cultivated from a fragile age. I can not comment on the current educational system in Romania because I am not aware of how it works anymore. As a child I remember having to memorise lots of things by heart (which was a good memory exercise, but that’s about it!). It wasn’t fantastic as it gave no problem-solving skills, you had to do what you were told. It had good attributes, too: calligraphy, grammar, foreign languages and many other areas.

Anyway, I am sure things have changed one way or another.

The Manifesto needs to appeal to people on different levels! This one didn’t (I just read the Romanian version of it and the comments!). We are quite resilient when it comes to change (me included!) – this applies to every individual (every manager of self and others knows that, right!).
I would have liked to see a follow up, you know, the natural progression of the Manifesto (the equivalent of green paper – white paper – policy changing) and that would have shown a great deal of interest, a board of people acting as leaders, working on it from many angles, on different levels, with everybody’s interest at heart (young, old, abroad, traveller, rural, urban, so on…) not just the one of the Romanian writer who has never left his village! A more interacting atmosphere I guess is needed!

If this comes from people who can do something about it than it would be wise to:
1 – Rewrite it with a time frame in mind
2 – Follow it up with another text with more specifics including feedback!
3 – Lead the way (as it was suggested 2 years ago but not followed through!)

Otherwise this Manifesto might as well become another thing to every Romanian writer’s wish list: after world peace and eradicating poverty.

Marius! Have a Happy New Year! (I mean it!)

 =  true...
Marius Surleac
[31.Dec.08 15:57]
Corina, you're right with the above said. But, as you seen - it's been some time...

The level of education in Romania is very poor right now from what I've seen.

Thank you very much and have a Happy New Year!


 =  corina
felix nicolau
[31.Dec.08 17:16]
every literary manifesto is destinied to be restrictive in a way or another. it isn't about this - it's not a receipt - only an optional guide. or that was meant to be at the time of its emergence

 =  willy
felix nicolau
[31.Dec.08 17:58]
not to forget that Nabokov firtly published Lolita in France, at Olympia Press,cause the Americans were terrified :)

 =  ! Felix
John Willy Kopperud
[31.Dec.08 21:14]
...indeed! Being from quite another country I don't really
have a clue as to the discourse in Romania. Nevertheless this glimpse into internal directions and opinions is highly interesting to me, as a looker-on. Whatever the various contributor's opinion about the manifesto might be, the readers are obviously engaged as to the question of Romanian poetry's identity. That keen interest should come
to use!
Cheers from Willy

 =  review
Diana Todea
[31.Dec.08 22:03]
I really think that the key to success is to write in that country's language, if you know what I mean. My comment is ok, it depends if you want to understand it or not. Secondly, the whole idea here of Boyarism is superficially understood. Yes it comes from "boier", but who mentioned communism here? Too much political ideology will threaten any literature, not only communism. I find this article ok, because it focuses on the idea of cleaning the language used nowadays by "new comers" in such a bad way.
And yes, Felix Nicolau has a point that this is only a guideline for a possible literary current. I think we should pay more attention to the language we use when we write and to the aesthetics of a piece of writing. Happy New Year everybody! Harmonious cheers, Diana.

 =  Happy New 2009!
Marius Surleac
[01.Jan.09 12:44]
Diana, the comment is addressed to me? I think not!

Happy New Year all and welcome to 2009!

Best wishes,

 =  Happy brand new 2009!
Corina Gina Papouis
[01.Jan.09 15:04]
Ms Todea,
re: the review of your comm! You are entitled to your opinion, however, every time you write in Romanian and you feel somewhat odd you’ll know why! Perhaps it should have been Gaelic (providing you practice what you preach!). I believe that people can write in whatever language they identify with at that moment in time (providing they can master it!)…To conclude: I disagree!

I thought manifestos are about principles and intentions. You came with a bunch of principles, but where are the intentions? Has anybody ‘tested’ the audience (Romanian writers) to see where are they coming from (in a literary sense)? Don’t you want to know who we are before you tell us how to write? You have great exposure here on this site of thousands of people interested in writing/ reading; I think it is such a shame to miss opportunities!
I would have suggested a basic quantitative research (to start with), a simple quiz organised by Agonia, where people could participate (free willingly, of course!). This is a challenge for people with experience like yourself to show they can lead this new current, this Boyarism of Romanian writers, not just initiate it with a Manifesto. It doesn’t matter if it all goes wrong! At least you’ve tried and you’ll all have primary schools named after you (eventually!):)

In my opinion suggesting something when you don’t exactly know how much, where and what’s missing is a non-starter.
Good luck!

 =  Ms Papouis
Diana Todea
[01.Jan.09 17:07]
Please, I don't preach anything, it's your attitude that is a little bit strange. Perhaps that should be revised, not my words. All the best!

 =  please...
Marius Surleac
[01.Jan.09 17:37]
Diana, Corina - I think we don't have to warm the spirits like that and let's shake hands all together.

Happy New Year!


 =  !
Corina Gina Papouis
[01.Jan.09 17:58]
Are we still talking about Boyarism here?
‘Practice what you preach’ is an idiom. In this context means ‘if you stick to what you believe in’…Diana, I am not keeping scores here, and definitely not going to get personal, I gave you an example (with your opinion in mind) that’s all…

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