We have to quit the illusion of progress in cultural history : An online interview with Sebastien doubinsky

Sebastien doubinsky:

Lives in Aarhus, Denmark

Home town: Paris, France

Lecturer, Aarhus University


Published book: A Quiet Cafe in Cairo, Looking for things in the sky

Political views: Anarchist

Dupur Mitra: First question, why do you write poetry?

Sebastien doubinsky:  I don’t know. Seriously. In a way, I have always been a poet and I guess you could say it’s the air I breathe, the bread I eat, the way I see things. On the other hand, it’s also a angle on the world that I have always related to. Different, slanted and questioning. I think questioning is what attracts me the most in poetry today.

Dupur Mitra: Do you think poetry play role in your society? If yes how and if not why?

Sebastien doubinsky: No, it doesn’t and it won’t for a long time. Why? Because poetry has no more social function. Even music has lost its meaning since the fall of the Berlin Wall. The system in which we live is – in its own eyes – uncriticizable, as it is the best of all systems. Of course, it is a blatant lie, but the media, which is the Church of the system, supports that lie. So poetry, fiction and any form of truly subversive way of thinking or expressing oneself will be put aside and ignored. In the Soviet Union of yesterday, or China and the dictatoships of today, poets, writers and artists who did not conform were emprisoned. In the West, they are simply ignored by the official medias – and the result is even worse, as no one stands up to denounce this situation. I wouldn’t say it is hopelesds, but it is a very difficult situation to be a free-thinker in the West right now – unless you get media coverage – and then you become mainstream and all is lost.

Dupur Mitra: Who are your major influences as a poet?

Sebastien doubinsky: The French, American and Russsian Modernists, the Surrealists, the Greek poets and daily life.

Dupur Mitra: What does being a poet mean to you?

Sebastien doubinsky: I am a poet – if I have to define what it means to me, I have to define my being – and I am unfortunately not Buddha.

Dupur Mitra: What is poetry?

Sebastien doubinsky: No idea. Poetry is what inspires it and what it becomes. Form means nothing. It is shapeless, like words, air, breath.

Dupur Mitra: What are your observations about trending of world poetry?

Sebastien doubinsky:  World poetry is poetry. And poetry has always been a global phenomenon, with local (individual) manifestations. Absolutely nothing new here.

Dupur Mitra: Is poetry movement can improve the poetry? if yes how, if not why?

Sebastien doubinsky: Can a poetry movement improve poetry? No. Can it change it? Yes. I am not sure the Modernists or the Surrealsts have improved poetry in any way, but it has given it a new direction. We have to quit the illusion of progress in cultural history. It is a disguised set of values. And values are oppressive. Always.

Dupur Mitra: What is your opinion about today’s world poetry movement?

Sebastien doubinsky: I have no opinion. Poetry, like the world, belongs to itself.


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