The Association for Slavic, East European, & Eurasian Studies
'Mayakovsky & The Dreaded Byt'
Since his death, Mayakovsky’s western critics and biographers have insisted that the poet hated every aspect of daily domestic existence, that he abhorred the idea of family, children and even biological production itself. The concept at the heart of these claims is byt, which, in relation to Mayakovsky, has been consistently mistranslated as “the daily grind” with no recourse to the explosive multiplicity of meanings accumulated by it in the early Soviet period.
This mistranslation, and its inevitable impact not only on the western understanding of Mayakovsky’s full political and cultural impact (not least by giving the false impression that he was somewhat of a misogynist) but also on the historical trajectory of particular works translated into English over others (which do not fit the bill), is the subject of my paper, which will examine the phenomenon as part of a wider drive, solidified largely during the Cold War years, to de-emphasise Mayakovsky’s Soviet status in favour of the selective reappropriation of his less manifestly political poems into a more individualistic, “western” context.
14th Annual Poets vs. MCs
Stereotype-smashing verbal elasticity from the UK's sharpest and most unusual collective of lyrical warriors!
Brighton’s legendary annual battle of wits is back, and this time we’re shaking things up!
Pitting a team of rappers and poets against each other in competition for the tightest rhetoric, the wildest imagination and the most dextrous barbs, Poets vs. MCs dismantles the preconceived boundaries of both genres, presenting a showcase of talent that is as ingeniously intelligent as it is entertaining. Featuring straight-out battles, a range of challenges and a live improvised score from spectacular music-makers Normanton Street, this is spoken word... as you've never seen it before!
As always, I shall be hosting, performing and making rappers cry.
My Adventures in Time Travel, by Rosy Carrick.
Blah Blah Blah
On the eve of Valentine's Day, Blah can't help but descend into a pit of cynicism and bitterness. We ask is love life's greatest gift? Or does it just plain suck?
Two teams of wordsmiths go head to head to argue each side of the case. Expect soaring ballads, tenderness, pain, bitterness and hilarity from some of the best poets from across the UK. Will Team Love or Team Cynicism win?