Mandelstam on Hellenism

skara-brae-2-marcofantoni84

Hellenism is a cooking pot, oven tongs, an earthenware jug of milk, household utensils, dishes, all the things that surround a human body; Hellenism is the warmth of the hearth recognized as something holy;  it is any possession that connects a man with some part of the world outside himself. … Hellenism is a man deliberately surrounded with utensils instead of with indifferent objects, the turning of indifferent objects into utensils, humanizing the surrounding world, warming a man with a gentle teleological warmth. Hellenism is any stove beside which a man sits and enjoys the warmth as something akin to his internal warmth. … Hellenism is the system, in the Bergsonian meaning of the word, which a man sets up around himself.

Osip Mandelstam

Translation by Robert Tracy

Photo: Skara Brae 2 by marcofantoni84

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~ by matt on 3 December 2008.

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Natalie E. Illum...

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