World Library  
Flag as Inappropriate
Email this Article

Kaddish (poem)

Article Id: WHEBN0000722379
Reproduction Date:

Title: Kaddish (poem)  
Author: World Heritage Encyclopedia
Language: English
Subject: Allen Ginsberg, Kaddish (disambiguation), 1961 poems, White Shroud Poems, Plutonian Ode
Collection: 1961 Poems, Poetry by Allen Ginsberg
Publisher: World Heritage Encyclopedia
Publication
Date:
 

Kaddish (poem)

"Kaddish" also known as "Kaddish for Naomi Ginsberg (1894–1956)" is a poem by Beat writer Allen Ginsberg about his mother Naomi and her death on June 9, 1956.

Contents

  • Background 1
  • Stage version 2
  • Notes 3
  • References 4

Background

Ginsberg began writing the poem in the Beat Hotel in Paris in December 1957 and completed in New York in 1959. The poem was published as the lead poem in the collection Kaddish and Other Poems (1961).[1] It is often considered one of Ginsberg's finest poems, with some scholars holding that it is his best poem.

The Kaddish of the title refers to the mourner's prayer or blessing in Judaism. This long poem was Ginsberg's attempt to mourn his mother, Naomi, but also reflects his sense of loss at his estrangement from his born religion. The traditional Kaddish contains no references to death, whereas Ginsberg's poem is riddled with thoughts and questionings of death.

Stage version

Ginsberg wrote a screenplay based on the poem. Robert Frank was to direct it, but money could not be raised for the project. In 1972, Robert Kalfin readapted the screenplay for the stage and produced it at the Chelsea Theater Center in the Brooklyn Academy of Music. The play explored Naomi Ginsberg's schizophrenic collapse and made use of innovative video for flashback scenes.

There is a detailed description of this production and of behind-the-scenes incidents surrounding it in Davi Napoleon's chronicle of the Chelsea, Chelsea on the Edge: The Adventures of an American Theater (1991). Kalfin's adaptation was also staged in the Habima theater in Israel, translated by Nathan Zach and starring Yoram Khatav as Allen and Gila Almagor as Naomi. In June 2014 the play was adapted as a one actor play "Watching from Window" and premiered in "Israel Festival".[2]

Notes

Kaddish (קדיש Aramaic: "holy") refers to an important and central prayer in the Jewish prayer service. The central theme of the Kaddish is the magnification and sanctification of God's name. In the liturgy, several variations of the Kaddish are used functionally as separators between various sections of the service. The term "Kaddish" is often used to refer specifically to "The Mourners' Kaddish", said as part of the mourning rituals in Judaism in all prayer services as well as at funerals and memorials. When mention is made of "saying Kaddish", this unambiguously denotes the rituals of mourning.

A line from the poem, "No more to say and nothing to weep for", was later used as the title of a 1997 Channel 4 documentary on Ginsberg released shortly after his death.

References

  1. ^ (Kaddish and Other Poems 1958–1960 by Allen Ginsberg (City Lights Books: San Francisco, 1961) questia.com)
  2. ^ http://www.habama.co.il/Pages/Description.aspx?Subj=1&Area=1&ArticleID=22567


This article was sourced from Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License; additional terms may apply. World Heritage Encyclopedia content is assembled from numerous content providers, Open Access Publishing, and in compliance with The Fair Access to Science and Technology Research Act (FASTR), Wikimedia Foundation, Inc., Public Library of Science, The Encyclopedia of Life, Open Book Publishers (OBP), PubMed, U.S. National Library of Medicine, National Center for Biotechnology Information, U.S. National Library of Medicine, National Institutes of Health (NIH), U.S. Department of Health & Human Services, and USA.gov, which sources content from all federal, state, local, tribal, and territorial government publication portals (.gov, .mil, .edu). Funding for USA.gov and content contributors is made possible from the U.S. Congress, E-Government Act of 2002.
 
Crowd sourced content that is contributed to World Heritage Encyclopedia is peer reviewed and edited by our editorial staff to ensure quality scholarly research articles.
 
By using this site, you agree to the Terms of Use and Privacy Policy. World Heritage Encyclopedia™ is a registered trademark of the World Public Library Association, a non-profit organization.
 



Copyright © World Library Foundation. All rights reserved. eBooks from World Library are sponsored by the World Library Foundation,
a 501c(4) Member's Support Non-Profit Organization, and is NOT affiliated with any governmental agency or department.