Światło anamnezy. O utworze Zbigniewa Herberta Pan Cogito myśli o powrocie do rodzinnego miasta

Robert Mielhorski


The Light of Anamnesis. On the Poem Pan Cogito myśli o powrocie do rodzinnego miasta [“Mr. Cogito Considers Returning to His Native Town”] by Zbigniew Herbert


The article is an attempt to investigate the issue of anamnesis in Zbigniew Herbert’s poetry based on the interpretation of the poem Pan Cogito myśli o powrocie do rodzinnego miasta [“Mr. Cogito Considers Returning to His Native Town”]. Here, the category of anamnesis is taken from R. Schaeffler’s reflection and employed in the description of the theme in the poet’s personal lyrics (a book by M. Zalewski is also adduced). The anamnetic act is construed in this sketch as an experience of the “whole;” moreover, it is realized in two variants: (a) of the return (the subject “I” encounters its personal past), and (b) of translation (which means the restoration of the past consciousness and its introduction into the space of present consciousness). The interpretation of the discussed poem by Herbert employs the hermeneutic attitude of understanding, while the very notion of hermeneutics refers both to the hermeneutic method of interpretation and to the hermeneutic approach of the poem’s subject towards the world. This work by the author of Mr. Cogito is also construed as an initiation text: read in the terms of the subject’s self-defining on three planes: personal, super-individual, and metaphysical, as well as in the situation of salvation (the trope of the pavement slab in the realities of the destruction of the former world order), and underlines the moment of hesitation spreading “before the leap into the finality.” Herbert’s text also reflects the situation of a protagonist in suspension: between life and death, in the “in between” sphere.

Keywords: Zbigniew Herbert, anamnesis, hermeneutic attitude, variant of the return, variant of the translation, initiation, salvation, understanding.

Pełny tekst:


Administracja Cytowania | Strony czasopism