The Emergence and Development of Modern Kurdish Poetry
Thesis or dissertation
University of Exeter
Reason for embargo
Intend to publish as a book
This thesis challenges the traditional literary criticism’s definition of modern poetry and the explanation of its emergence as a radical break with the past in the 1930s and 1940s and conducted by Abdula Goran, “the father of modern Kurdish poetry”. In traditional criticism, the classification of poetry is based on its formal features and modern poetry is characterized by abandoning the classical metrical system (aruz), and employing syllabic meter and free rhyme schemes. However, guided by Lotman’s theory of literary change, this thesis offers a more nuanced approach to the study of modern poetry and examines its emergence as a process of literary change that unfolded through the oeuvre of several poets, starting from the late nineteenth century and culminating in the 1940s. Exploring the process of the poetic change in time and investigating the mechanism of the transformation, three stages of transformation are identified which are represented by the works of Hacî Qadirê Koyî, Rehîm Rehmê Hekarî, and Pîremêrd. A close reading of the works of the selected poets reveals a gradual move from the classical norms and conventions of poetry and a successive introduction of new perspectives, rhetoric, and literary devices into the poetic system. This thesis argues that modern Kurdish poetry emerged in response to the advent of modernity and nationalism in Kurdish society. The study argues that modern poetry was the literary form which accompanied the emergence of Kurdish nationalism, a phenomenon which can be equated with the role played by the novel in Europe. Poetry played a significant role in constructing and disseminating Kurdish nationalism, making it intelligible to uneducated people. The examination of the evolution of modern poetry in this study has revealed lesser known aspects of the formation and the development of Kurdish nationalism and has brought to light the neglected contribution of Kurdish religious intellectuals.
Ghaderi, Farangis. (2015). The challenges of writing Kurdish literary history: Representation, classification, periodisation. In Kurdish Studies, Vol. 3, No. 1, pp. 3-25.
PhD in Kurdish Studies