"Ah! What Poor Me in this World" by Erasmus Słowacki – Cultural and Theodicean Interpretation of the Poem
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Polish culture
19th-century literature
Erasmus Słowacki
theodicean interpretation

How to Cite

Kaźmierczak, Z. (2023). "Ah! What Poor Me in this World" by Erasmus Słowacki – Cultural and Theodicean Interpretation of the Poem. Bibliotekarz Podlaski Ogólnopolskie Naukowe Pismo Bibliotekoznawcze I Bibliologiczne, 57(4), 25–52. https://doi.org/10.36770/bp.743


The article combines two elements in the interpretation of Erasmus Słowacki’s poem “Ah! What Poor Me in this World”: the cultural and the theodicean. Granted, not all
major theodicean concepts are included in the poem by the poet himself, and neither can they be applied to it in the act of interpretation. Theologically speaking, however, it is possible to see in the poem a theodicean concept of divine recompense for the evil suffered (an example is the recompense given to Job after the trial he was subjected to). The possibility of seeing compensation stems from the observation that his tragedy (the loss of his ten children) was too great for the poet to still be able to
write literarily complex works of a public nature about it (and the poem in question
is such a work). The fact that he writes about it, and in this way, proves that a specific mental and emotional healing process has started in him, which can perhaps be seen as a manifestation of the beginning of the process of restitution. Part of it is a reconsideration of one’s future, an increased sense of power, an attempt to contact dead children (which could prove the poet’s opening to a theistically oriented process of experiencing miracles), a belief in the existence of non-material reality (and thus, indirectly, a recognition of the possibility of meeting dead children after death). 

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Copyright (c) 2023 Zbigniew Kaźmierczak


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