Kostas Karyotakis


Kostas Karyotakis

Kostas Karyotakis ( _el. Κώστας Καρυωτάκης)(November 11, 1896July 20, 1928) is considered one of the most representative Greek poets of the 1920s and one of the first poets to use iconoclastic themes in Greece. His poetry conveys a great deal of nature imagery and traces of expressionism and surrealism. The majority of Karyotakis' contemporaries viewed him in a dim light throughout his lifetime without a pragmatic accountability for their contemptuous views; for after his suicide,the majority began to revert to the view that he was indeed a great poet. He had a significant, almost disproportionately progressive influence on later Greek poets.

Born in Tripoli, Greece, his father's occupation as a county engineer resulted in Karyotakis' changing homes frequently in his youth. During his childhood he lived in many locations in Greece, including Argostoli, Lefkada, Larisa, Kalamata, Athens and Chania.

He started publishing poetry in various magazines for children in 1912. It is solely rife speculation that he had felt deeply betrayed that a girl he had cared for in Hania in 1913 had married and sent him into melancholy. After receiving his degree from the Law School of Athens, in 1917, he did not pursue his career as a lawyer. Karyotakis became a clerk in the Prefecture of Thessaloniki. However, he greatly disliked his work and could not tolerate the bureaucracy of the state, which he wrote about often in his poems. His prose piece "Catharsis" ('purification') is characteristic of this. For this reason he would often be removed from his posts and transferred to other locations in Greece. During these removals he became familiar with the boredom and misery of the country during World War I.

In February 1919 he published his first collection of poetry: "The Pain of Men and Things", which was largely ignored or badly criticized by the critics. In the same year he published with his friend Agis Levendis a satirical review called "The Leg", which despite its success was banned by the police after the sixth issue. In 1921 he published his second collection called " Nepenthe" and also wrote a musical revue "Pell-Mell". In 1922 he began having an affair with the poetess Maria Polydouri who was his colleague at the Prefecture of Attica.

In 1923 he wrote a poem called (Greek:) "Ωχρά Σπειροχαίτη", meaning: "Treponema pallidum", which was published under the title "Song of Madness" and gave rise to speculation that he may have been suffering from syphilis. George Skouras, a physician of the poet, wrote: "He was sick, he was syphilitic" and George Savidis (1929-1999), professor of the Aristotle University of Thessaloniki, who possessed the largest archive about Greek poets, revealed that Karyotakis was syphilitic, and that his brother, Thanasis Karyotakis, thought the disease to be a disgrace to the family. [Κοντόκωστας Κίμωνας & Κουσούλης Αντώνης, 2008. "Η σύφιλη στην ιστορία και στις τέχνες". Αθήνα: Ιατρικές εκδόσεις Γιάννη Β. Παρισιάνου. ISBN 978-960-89486-7-9]

In 1924 he traveled abroad, visiting Italy and Germany. In December 1927 he published his last collection of poetry: "Elegy and Satires". In February 1928, Karyotakis was transferred to Patras although soon afterwards he spent a month on leave in Paris and in June 1928 sent yet again to Preveza. From there he sent desperate letters to friends and relatives describing the misery he felt in the town. His family offered to support him for an indefinite stay in Paris, but he refused knowing what a monetary sacrifice this would entail for them. His angst is felt in the poem "Preveza" which he wrote shortly before his suicide. On July 20 he went to Monolithi and kept trying to drown in the sea for ten hours, but failed in his attempt. In the subsequent morning he returned home and left again to purchase a revolver and went to a little café. After smoking for a few hours, he went to a nearby seashore called Agios Spyridon and there, under a eucalyptus, shot himself through the heart. His suicide letter was found in his pocket.

References

External links

* [http://users.otenet.gr/~lost/english/ Yiannis Vogiatzis' "Kostas Karyotakis - Home Page"]
* [http://users.ox.ac.uk/~shil0124/poems/nepenthe.htm Poems from "Nepenthe" and "Elegies & Satires"] (translated by Peter J. King & Andrea Christofidou
* [http://www.myspace.com/kwstas_karywtakis]


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  • Kostas Karyotakis — Kostas Karyotakis, Selbstporträt Kostas Karyotakis (griechisch Κώστας Καρυωτάκης, * 30. Oktober 1896 in Tripolis; † 21. Juli 1928 in Preveza) war ein griechischer …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • Kostas Karyotakis — Kostas Karyotákis Kostas Karyotakis (en grec: Κώστας Καρυωτάκης) (1896–1928) est l’un des poètes grecs les plus représentatifs des années 1920[réf. nécessaire]. Sa poésie contient beaucoup d’images tirées de la nature et des tendances à… …   Wikipédia en Français

  • Kostas Karyotákis — Kostas Karyotakis (en grec: Κώστας Καρυωτάκης) (1896–1928) est l’un des poètes grecs les plus représentatifs des années 1920[1]. Sa poésie contient beaucoup d’images tirées de la nature et des tendances à l’expressionnisme et au surréalisme. Il… …   Wikipédia en Français

  • Kostas Karyotakis — (en griego: Κώστας Καρυωτάκης) (30 de octubre de 1896, Trípoli, Grecia – 20 de julio de 1928, Préveza, Grecia) fue uno de los poetas griegos más representativos de los …   Wikipedia Español

  • Karyotakis — Kostas Karyotákis Kostas Karyotakis (en grec: Κώστας Καρυωτάκης) (1896–1928) est l’un des poètes grecs les plus représentatifs des années 1920[réf. nécessaire]. Sa poésie contient beaucoup d’images tirées de la nature et des tendances à… …   Wikipédia en Français

  • Kostas — (von Konstans) ist ein griechischer (griechisch Κώστας) und litauischer männlicher Vorname.[1] Im Griechischen tritt der Name oft als Koseform von Konstantinos auf. Bekannte Namensträger Kostas Axelos (1924–2010), griechischer Philosoph… …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • Karyotakis — ist der Familienname folgender Personen: Kostas Karyotakis (1896–1928), griechischer Dichter und Prosaist Theodoros Karyotakis (1903–1978), griechischer Komponist Klassischer Musik Diese Seite ist eine Begriffsklärung zu …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • KARYOTAKIS (K.) — KARYOTAKIS KÓSTAS (1896 1928) Poète grec, auteur d’une des œuvres les plus singulières de son temps, Karyotakis a exercé une profonde influence sur les poètes majeurs, tels Séféris ou Ritsos, de la «génération de 1930». Après avoir mené une vie… …   Encyclopédie Universelle

  • Karyotakis — Karyotạkis,   Kostas, neugriechischer Lyriker, * Tripolis 30. 10. 1896, ✝ (Freitod) Prevesa 21. 7. 1928; schrieb Gedichte, aber auch Prosa. Karyotakis Lyrik (»Der Schmerz des Menschen und der Dinge«, 1919; »Schmerzstillend«, 1921) wurde zu… …   Universal-Lexikon

  • Theodoros Karyotakis — (griechisch Θεόδωρος Καρυωτάκης, Vorname gelegentlich als Theodore übersetzt; * 21. Juli 1903 in Argos; † 14. Juni 1978 in Athen) war ein griechischer Komponist Klassischer Musik. Inhaltsverzeichnis 1 Leben 2 Werk 3 Werkauswahl …   Deutsch Wikipedia


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