Harold Monro



Futurism and Ourselves


Literatur: "1913"


WE have nothing but admiration for the courage of those men who, at great risk and in spite of all opposition, have blared the principles of their Futurism into the ears of their compatriots. Italy is, in the mind of Europe, synonymous with "Florence, Venice, Rome," and she has so far been content to accept that estimation. The Futurists will have none of it. These cities, they say, are the Italy of the fifteenth century. Modern Italy is centred round Milan, Turin, Genoa, and the other cities of the north in which a new life is stirring, and these, being the cities of to-day, are to their own generation, the cities of importance. Moreover, if you deny this, you turn your backs on the present and the future, and we will come among you, and, with all possible violence, compel you to believe us.

Now this is precisely the spirit which actuated men in the early days of the French Revolution, between which and the Futurist revolt we do not hesitate to draw a fairly close analogy. Both represent the reaction of a suppressed vitality against a tyrannous and antiquated power; and both were, in the first place, of purely national intention; in the former case the power was that of a social and material government, in the latter, it is of an artistic and academical tradition. The fact that we are not prepared to separate the art from the life of a people makes the analogy all the more significant. The situation of England to the revolutionaries of 1789 is fairly paralleled by ours to those of to-day. The problems which concern us are neither of the precise nature nor of the same intensity as those with which they are faced. To take one instance. We have little of the sentimental eroticism with which Italy and Italian literature is permeated. Notwithstanding the claims of such as Elinor Glyn or Lawrence Hope, that is a statement we can conscientiously make. And moreover, however far we have yet to go, an examination of contemporary English poetry will show that there is among its authors a certain number of young men who are content neither to draw their inspiration from the past nor to suffer its forms to pass unmodified to their needs. It is this fact which we believe constitutes a claim to some distinction between a Victorian and a Georgian period. Let it not be imagined we are making a big boast. Against Signor Marinetti we claim only, what none will deny, that English poetry has not stood still since the days of the Elizabethans, and what some at least will admit, that its development continues, however humbly, to-day as ever. To return to our [391] analogy, England a hundred years ago had not the immediate need that France possessed for a violent upheaval, but profited by that of its neighbour, continuing and accelerating its own enfranchisement while the pendulum swung violently backward and forward between despotism and a chaotic democracy on the other side of the Channel. Should Signor Marinetti succeed, as we believe he deserves to succeed, in Italy, we dare not prophesy how far this analogy may work itself to a conclusion. But this we ardently believe: that it is essential for us to be allowed to solve our own problems in our own manner. The Latin temperament is not ours, and its present violent materialism will fail to find permanent footing here. With this reservation, we acclaim a movement to which we look for the first step in Italy towards that ordered vitality which is the basis of art and existence alike.





Erstdruck und Druckvorlage

Poetry and Drama.
Jg. 1, 1913, Nr. 4, Dezember, S. 390-391


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Monro, Harold: The Future of Poetry. In: The Poetry Review. Jg. 1, 1912, Nr. 1, Januar, S. 10-13. [PDF]

Monro, Harold: Futurist Poetry. In: Poetry and Drama. Jg. 1, 1913, Nr. 3, September, S. 264.
URL: https://archive.org/details/poetrydrama01monruoft

Monro, Harold: The Origin of Futurism. In: Poetry and Drama. Jg. 1, 1913, Nr. 4, Dezember, S. 389.
URL: https://archive.org/details/poetrydrama01monruoft

Monro, Harold: Futurism and Ourselves. In: Poetry and Drama. Jg. 1, 1913, Nr. 4, Dezember, S. 390-391.
URL: https://archive.org/details/poetrydrama01monruoft

Monro, Harold: [Rezension zu:] William Carlos Williams: The Tempers. In: Poetry and Drama. Jg. 1, 1913, Nr. 4, Dezember, S. 502-503.
URL: https://archive.org/details/poetrydrama01monruoft

Monro, Harold: The Imagists Discussed. In: The Egoist. Bd. 2, 1915, Nr. 5, 1. Mai, S. 77-80.
URL: http://modjourn.org/journals.html





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