Czeslaw Milosz and Joseph Brodsky Fellowship of Poets Irena Grudzinska Gross

Publication date:
24 Nov 2009
Yale University Press
384 pages: 210 x 140 x 27mm
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This intimate portrayal of the friendship between two icons of twentieth-century poetry, Czeslaw Milosz and Joseph Brodsky, highlights the parallel lives of the poets as exiles living in America and Nobel Prize laureates in literature. To create this truly original work, Irena Grudzinska Gross draws from poems, essays, letters, interviews, speeches, lectures, and her own personal memories as a confidant of both Milosz and Brodsky.


The dual portrait of these poets and the elucidation of their attitudes toward religion, history, memory, and language throw a new light on the upheavals of the twentieth-century. Gross also incorporates notes on both poets’ relationships to other key literary figures, such as W. H. Auden, Susan Sontag, Seamus Heaney, Mark Strand, Robert Haas, and Derek Walcott.


Irena Grudzinska Gross teaches in the Slavic Languages and Literatures Department at Princeton University.

'Drawing on personal papers and her own memories, Gross’s double portrait in Czeslaw Milosz and Joseph Brodsky is at its best when describing the inextricable connection between creative personality and a sense of exile.'
Andrew Kahn, Times Literary Supplement