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New Left Review I/40, November-December 1966


New Left Review

Introduction to Brecht’s Poems

In recent numbers of New Left Review we have presented poems by two self-avowed Marxists—Attila József and Franco Fortini. We now present some poems, hitherto untranslated, by a third, Bertolt Brecht. One of the reasons for printing work by these poets is to call attention to the problems posed to poets by the reality of socialism and Marxism. This is not only a problem of the poet and politics in the public sphere, but, in the private sphere, of the poetic and political intelligence in one man’s consciousness. Of course there is a certain partisanship in evidence in the choice of only Marxists rather than poets of the right, such as Pound. The latter are in any case more discussed in the Western world, though not necessarily better served. It is our intention to consider Pound later in this series.

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