Yehuda Amichai was born in Germany in 1924. Once the rise of the Nazi monster could neither be denied or ignored, he and his family escaped from there and arrived in Israel. Accordingly, one might expect that at least a significant cluster of poems by Amichai would address the Holocaust. This assumption, however, is at odds with the aesthetic reality of Yehuda Amichai's "poetic republic." Indeed, one can trace very few "Holocaust poems" among his many thousands, composed during the course of over five decades. Did he deliberately suppress the Holocaust's atrocities in order to challenge the verbal nature of his literary medium, and to translate its verbality into roaring muteness? One will never be able to tell. Nevertheless, these considerations are entirely irrelevant when one addresses aesthetically the poetry of Yehuda Amichai (or any other artist's work). The psychological or autobiographical intentions that are invested in the literary text have no place in the investigative realms of the literary scholar. He or she focuses on the literary text per se and addresses its aesthetic texture only, while dismissing any information that is not invested in the text itself.


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pp. 80-88
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