Cover Osteuropa 3/2006

In Osteuropa 3/2006

Traitor or Mediator?
Yosif Brodskii / Joseph Brodsky as Cultural Double Agent

Petra Huber

Deutsche Fassung


The poet and translator Yosif Brodskii left the Soviet Union in 1972 and was “born again” as poet, essayist and university lecturer in the United States. There, he continued to compose his poems mostly in Russian, but for his essays, Brodsky made the switch to his adopted English tongue. Two texts of different genres – between each of which lies almost all of Brodsky’s time in exile – reveal Brodsky as a distinct kind of traveller of borderlands, one who moved between cultures, languages and genres. Common to both texts is the theme of the writer as spy and potential traitor to his own culture.

(Osteuropa 3/2006, pp. 105–120)