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Leopold Sedar Senghor was not only president of the Republic of Senegal from 1960 to 1981, he is also Africa's most famous poet. A cofounder of the Negritude cultural movement, he is recognized as one of the most significant figures in African literature. This bilingual edition of Senghor's complete poems made his work available for the first time to English-speaking audie Leopold Sedar Senghor was not only president of the Republic of Senegal from 1960 to 1981, he is also Africa's most famous poet. A cofounder of the Negritude cultural movement, he is recognized as one of the most significant figures in African literature. This bilingual edition of Senghor's complete poems made his work available for the first time to English-speaking audiences. His poetry, alive with sensual imagery, contrasts the lushness and wonder of Africa's past with the alienation and loss associated with assimilation into European culture. Translator Melvin Dixon places Senghor's writing in historical persepctive by relating it to both his political involvement and his intellectual development.


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Leopold Sedar Senghor was not only president of the Republic of Senegal from 1960 to 1981, he is also Africa's most famous poet. A cofounder of the Negritude cultural movement, he is recognized as one of the most significant figures in African literature. This bilingual edition of Senghor's complete poems made his work available for the first time to English-speaking audie Leopold Sedar Senghor was not only president of the Republic of Senegal from 1960 to 1981, he is also Africa's most famous poet. A cofounder of the Negritude cultural movement, he is recognized as one of the most significant figures in African literature. This bilingual edition of Senghor's complete poems made his work available for the first time to English-speaking audiences. His poetry, alive with sensual imagery, contrasts the lushness and wonder of Africa's past with the alienation and loss associated with assimilation into European culture. Translator Melvin Dixon places Senghor's writing in historical persepctive by relating it to both his political involvement and his intellectual development.

30 review for The Collected Poetry

  1. 5 out of 5

    ♥ Ibrahim ♥

    Léopold Sédar Senghor Was the first African to be elected to the Académie Française, the prestigious institution that oversees French language usage. He is a Senegalese poet and politician and was the first president of Senegal. He is a founding member of the Négritude movement, as well as the Francophonie movement.

  2. 4 out of 5

    Oleksandr Fediienko

    Вірші Сенґора – це поєднання французької поетичної традиції з африканською. Ніби цього було недостатньо, щоб ускладнити життя читачам, автор додає дрібку інших деталей. По-перше, він є дещо герметичним; у нього часто повторюються певні образи, які потребують тлумачення. По-друге, більша частина його віршів (є все ж певна кількість нормальних) має порівняно зменшену частку дієслів, через що складно зрозуміти, що в них відбувається. Серед усіх зібраних творів я б виділив поему «Чака». Це є інтерпре Вірші Сенґора – це поєднання французької поетичної традиції з африканською. Ніби цього було недостатньо, щоб ускладнити життя читачам, автор додає дрібку інших деталей. По-перше, він є дещо герметичним; у нього часто повторюються певні образи, які потребують тлумачення. По-друге, більша частина його віршів (є все ж певна кількість нормальних) має порівняно зменшену частку дієслів, через що складно зрозуміти, що в них відбувається. Серед усіх зібраних творів я б виділив поему «Чака». Це є інтерпретація класики африканської літератури – епічного роману Томаса Мофоли. Сенґор звів обличчям до обличчя легендарного і сумнозвісного Чаку з Глухим Голосом. У французькій мові, якою він писав, «voix blanche» зазвичай означає «монотонний або придушений голос», але є і більш буквальний переклад – «білий голос», тобто голос білої людини. І от Чака веде діалог з тим голосом, який зробив із нього в очах усього світу кровожерливого звіра. Якщо потрібна якась цитата, то ось вона. Вустами Чаки Сенґор промовляє: «Ні я не поема що сипле дзвінким камінням / Ні я не створюю поему, я той хто її супроводжує».

  3. 5 out of 5

    James F

    Senghor, the first president of S��negal, was also (with the possible exception of C��sar Aim��e, by whom he was influenced) the best-known Francophone poet of Africa. This complete collection of his poetry contains the six books he published as well as two groups of earlier poems which were published later; it also contains translations of all the poems and an introduction by Melvin Dixon, and a lexicon in English and French of the African or unusual words in the poems. There are no introductio Senghor, the first president of S��negal, was also (with the possible exception of C��sar Aim��e, by whom he was influenced) the best-known Francophone poet of Africa. This complete collection of his poetry contains the six books he published as well as two groups of earlier poems which were published later; it also contains translations of all the poems and an introduction by Melvin Dixon, and a lexicon in English and French of the African or unusual words in the poems. There are no introductions or notes to the individual books or poems. This is modern poetry, with which I am not all that familiar -- very allusive and symbolic; however, with the context given in the introduction about when and where they were written, I could follow the basic ideas of most of the poems well enough to appreciate the imagery. It would have been helpful in some cases to have had some identification of the people to/about whom the poems were written. While I read the poems in French, I looked through the translations and they seem to be accurate and to reflect the spirit of the poetry, although not always the sounds, which are so important for this style of poem. The poems in the first book, Chants d'Ombre, were mostly written during Senghor's student years in Paris, during the 1930s, and published in 1945. These poems deal with Senghor's divided consciousness, as an African studying essentially European culture in Europe. The second book, Hosties noires, written largely in a German POW camp, was published in 1948 and deals with the experiences of the S��negalese soldiers in the French army during World War II. The third book, Ethiopiques, was published in 1956; this has some of the most difficult poems, although others are obviously love poetry -- he married his second wife in 1957. The fourth book, Nocturnes, published in 1961, is mostly love poems; the first part was originally a separate collection addressed to his first wife, while the later ones are to his second wife. There follows the first of the two groups of early poems, then the fifth and sixth books, Lettres d'Hivernage and ��l��gies majeures published in 1972, from the period in which he was President of S��negal. The book ends with another group of early poems. Senghor is known for his theory of "n��gritude", which is evidenced in many of these poems, and had a major influence on later African literature (English as well as French), both directly and by way of reaction (e.g. Soyinka). For this reason, as well as for the beauty of the poetry itself, it is well worth reading. I may be becoming a convert to modern poetry!

  4. 5 out of 5

    Sophie

    Autre belle découverte après Aimé Césaire!

  5. 4 out of 5

    Julius

    Der Author war der erste Präsident Senegals. Der Lieder- und Gedichtband ermöglicht einige Einblicke in sein Weltbild. Viele Schriften drehen sich um seine Sehnsucht nach der Heimat während seiner Zeit in Europa sowie Liebe und Begierde. Das Interessanteste waren für mich jedoch nicht unbedingt die Themen, über die er geschrieben hat, sondern insbesondere die Sprache, die er verwendet hat, wenn es um Europa, Frankreich, Afrika, Senegal und Veränderung ging. Die entsprechenden Gedichte habe ich m Der Author war der erste Präsident Senegals. Der Lieder- und Gedichtband ermöglicht einige Einblicke in sein Weltbild. Viele Schriften drehen sich um seine Sehnsucht nach der Heimat während seiner Zeit in Europa sowie Liebe und Begierde. Das Interessanteste waren für mich jedoch nicht unbedingt die Themen, über die er geschrieben hat, sondern insbesondere die Sprache, die er verwendet hat, wenn es um Europa, Frankreich, Afrika, Senegal und Veränderung ging. Die entsprechenden Gedichte habe ich markiert.

  6. 5 out of 5

    Jan

    Leopold Sedar Senghor, vader des vaderlands van Senegal, lid van de Academie Fraincaise en buitengewoon getalenteerd schrijver en dichter. Zijn poezie legt de nerven van Afrika bloot, en geeft blijk van een emotionele rijkhied die ongekend is. Elk gedicht raakt en neemt mee.

  7. 4 out of 5

    Sofia

    senghor culto demais da conta. doideira mas pinta uma imagem linda da negritude.

  8. 5 out of 5

    Sarah Bilodeau

    I am glad I read this because his poetry marks an important period in history, but I really didn't find it as enjoyable to read as I wished that I would! I am glad I read this because his poetry marks an important period in history, but I really didn't find it as enjoyable to read as I wished that I would!

  9. 5 out of 5

    Asad ben Gharbya

  10. 4 out of 5

    Gregory Coutaut

  11. 4 out of 5

    Erin Ogunkeye

  12. 5 out of 5

    Cameron

  13. 5 out of 5

    MerYem Ch

  14. 5 out of 5

    Jesusthekick

  15. 5 out of 5

    Anastasia

  16. 5 out of 5

    martin eden

  17. 5 out of 5

    Blues Incroyable

  18. 5 out of 5

    Angelique

  19. 4 out of 5

    Sylwia

  20. 5 out of 5

    Joni Järvi-Laturi

  21. 4 out of 5

    Chloé

  22. 4 out of 5

    Mary Catherine Pace

  23. 5 out of 5

    liz

  24. 4 out of 5

    Lori Martindale

  25. 5 out of 5

    Rikachou

  26. 5 out of 5

    Mathieu

  27. 4 out of 5

    Jd Rafizadeh-kabe

  28. 4 out of 5

    Eren Jaye

  29. 4 out of 5

    Ndeye Sene

  30. 4 out of 5

    kripsoo

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