Centre for Romanian Studies

Centre for Romanian Studies header image 1

Entries Tagged as 'History'

POETRY IN TRANSLATION (403). Hector MCDONNELL (b. 1947), Co. ANTRIM, IRELAND: “ Patrick”

October 19th, 2016 · Comments Off on POETRY IN TRANSLATION (403). Hector MCDONNELL (b. 1947), Co. ANTRIM, IRELAND: “ Patrick” · Books, Famous People, History, PEOPLE, Poetry, quotations, Translations

L-ai strigat pe Dumnezeu,
Ce-a coborât adânc, în trupul tău,
Să-ti dea curaj să-nvingi la drumuri noi.

Care-a fost împăratul
Ce te-a-njosit? Unde-ai plecat?
Te căutăm, dar încă nu te ştim…
Străjerii tăi se uită-n vârf de munţi şi-aşteaptă
Pasul tău.

[


Thirty five Years ago: Oriana Falacci interrogates Ayatollah Khomeini (1979)

December 31st, 2015 · Comments Off on Thirty five Years ago: Oriana Falacci interrogates Ayatollah Khomeini (1979) · Books, Diary, Famous People, History, OPINION, PEOPLE, quotations

Perhaps only one Western journalist ever managed to interview Ayatollah Khomeini twice. And from those long discussions we learned an enormous amount about the nature of the adamant theocracy that he was bent upon instituting. The second session was an achievement in itself, since Oriana had terminated the first one by wrenching off the all-enveloping chador she had been compelled to wear and calling it a:
“stupid, medieval rag.”
She told me that after this moment of drama she had been taken aside by Khomeini’s son, who confided in her that it had been the only time in his life that he had seen his father laugh.

[


POETRY IN TRANSLATION (CCXLI): Herbert ASQUITH, (1881-1947), ENGLISH Poet, “The Fallen Subaltern”, “Soldatul-Erou”

December 23rd, 2013 · Comments Off on POETRY IN TRANSLATION (CCXLI): Herbert ASQUITH, (1881-1947), ENGLISH Poet, “The Fallen Subaltern”, “Soldatul-Erou” · International Media, PEOPLE, Poetry, quotations, Translations

The Fallen Subaltern
Hebert Asquith

The starshells float above, the bayonets glisten;
We bear our fallen friend without a sound;
Below the waiting legions lie and listen
To us, who march upon their burial-ground.
Herbert Asquith

În cânt de clopote şi în sclipiri de săbii
Tovaraşul de arme-l îngropăm,
Iar în ţărână suflete-adormite
Ascultă cum păşim mormântul lor.
Rendered in Romanian by: Constantin ROMAN,
© 2013, Copyright Constantin ROMAN, London

[


The Rev. Canon Patrick Comerford on the Centenary of the Anglican Church, Bucharest: 1913 – 2013

December 10th, 2013 · Comments Off on The Rev. Canon Patrick Comerford on the Centenary of the Anglican Church, Bucharest: 1913 – 2013 · Diary, Diaspora, History, OPINION, PEOPLE

In 1900, the British Minister or Ambassador, Sir John Gordon Kennedy (1836-1912), obtained the grant of a piece of land at the junction of Strada Pictor Verona and Strada Xenopol, in the corner of the Gradina Icoanei (The Park of the Icon) from the Commune of Bucharest in a deed of gift dated 2 December 1900.
The cornerstone of the church was laid 100 years ago today on 20 October 1913. The external fabric was completed by 1914, and the interior furnishings had been ordered from England. However, building work was interrupted with the outbreak of World War I.

The first service was held in the new church on Easter Day, 4 April 1920, and it was soon completed, and was dedicated by the Bishop of Gibraltar on 5 November 1922.

[


Romanian Dictionary of Quotations, Selected & Translated by Constantin ROMAN: Letter ‘H’

July 21st, 2013 · No Comments · Diaspora, International Media, PEOPLE, quotations, Translations

“He looks like a bottle of mustard with a black label.”
Marthe Bibesco

“A well spent hour is worth more than centuries and centuries of ignorance and neglect.”
Eugene Ionesco

“Old people do not need so many calories.”
Nicolae Ceausescu

[


Constantin ROMAN – Dérive continentale ou européen en dérive

July 27th, 2011 · Comments Off on Constantin ROMAN – Dérive continentale ou européen en dérive · Books, Diary, Diaspora, International Media, PEOPLE, Reviews

Voici une lecture aussi passionnante que captivante, bien qu’elle ne soit pas, comme le suggère son titre, un récit scientifique*/. Son auteur, un dissident Roumain ayant fait ses études de géophysique à Bucarest pendant les années folles du régime immonde de Ceausescu, est quand même parvenu a s’en échapper, afin de participer à une conférence à l’Université de Newcastle, en Grande Bretagne. N’étant plus retourné en Roumanie qu’après la chute du régime communiste, il est resté néanmoins un patriote Roumain, actuellement Professeur honoris causa de l’Université de Bucarest, tout en gardant sa résidence, près de Glyndebourne, dans une partie “chic” de l’Angleterre. Selon son propre récit, Constantin Roman doit être l’un des jeunes cientifiques recevant l’un des meilleurs honoraires du monde . Une fois arrivé en Angleterre, muni seulement d’un billet de £5 dans sa poche, il a utilisé son expertise, son charme, les meilleurs contacts ainsi que l’appui de l”unversité de Newcastle

Keith RUNCORN, invited Constantin ROMAN to a NATO Conference on Palaeomagnetism

comme plateforme de lancement. En parvenant à entretenir les meilleurs contacts, notamment avec le Professeur Keith Runcorn, de la Royal Society, il parvint à obtenir une bourse de recherches au Collège de Peterhouse, à Cambridge. Cela lui a permis de faire sa thèse de doctorat sur la tectonique des Carpathes et de l’Asie centrale, en étudiant des données sismiques afin d’identifier les limites et le mouvement des plaques lithosphériques. Dans ce contexte, utilisant les zones de compression et d’extension, il a défini l’existence de deux plaques lithosphériques non-rigides, les “plaques tampon”, ou “buffer plates”, du Tibet et du Sinkiang, cantonnées respectivement entre les plaques lithosphériques rigides de l”Inde et de l’Eurasie. Au début des années 70 une pareille suggestion aurait été étiquetée pour le moins comme iconoclaste. Une fois son doctorat obtenu, sous la direction du professeur Sir Edward Bullard, Roman est devenu par la suite Conseiller International de l’industrie petrolière, ayant gagné, je suppose, des honoraires prodigieux. Cet ouvrage traite essentiellement, de la folie des dictatures et des bureaucraties mais aussi de la douce vie de doctorant-chercheur a Cambridge. Quand aux détails de la bureaucratie “kafkaiesque”, les autorités britanniques semblent aussi obstinées que leurs consoeurs roumaines

[


Spanish-Romanian Cultural Complicities (I)

October 30th, 2010 · Comments Off on Spanish-Romanian Cultural Complicities (I) · Books, Diaspora, OPINION, PEOPLE, Translations

Another prominent exile was Alejandro Cioranescu (b Romania 1911 – d. Tenerife 1999) doctor Honoris causa of the University of Tenerife at La Laguna – an expert on the Spanish baroque and on the French-Spanish bibliography his books Estudios de literatura española y comparada (La Laguna, 1954), El barroco o el descubrimiento del drama (La Laguna,1957), Los hispanismos en el francés clásico (Madrid, 1987) and Bibliografía franco-española, 1600-1715 (Madrid 1977) remain to this day standard references in the field.

Amongst the ‘greats’ of universal literature who found exile in Spain was Horia Vintila (1915, Romania – 1992, Spain) who wrote directly in several languages including Spanish in which he published several novels Marta, o la segunda guerra, (Barcelona, 1987), Persecutez Boèce!, (Barcelona, 1983), Un sepulcro en el cielo, (Barcelona, 1987). He was the nominee of the prestigious French literary Prix Goncourt in 1960 which he was compelled to renounce following a character-assassination witch hunt masterminded by the Romanian secret services through the French left-wing press. It is worth noting that the novel in question “Dieu est ne en exil” which was translated in fourteen languages was NOT a political novel and it was inspired by the life of the exiled Roman poet Ovid who died on the Romanian shores of the Black Sea.

Horia Vintila was also a prolific essayist and literary critic in Spanish with titles such as: Presencia del mito, (Madrid, 1956), Poesia y liberdad, (Madrid, 1959), Espana y otras mundos, (Barcelona, 1970), Mestor de novehita, (Madrid, 1972), Introduccion a la mundo peor, (Barcelona, 1978), Literatura y disidencia, (Madrid, 1980), Los deechos humanus, la novsledel sigle XX, (Madrid, 1981). Horia Vintila was professor of Universal Literature at the Official School of Journalism and later founded the Chair of Universal Literature at the Complutense University in Madrid.

During the last two decades an expert of Romanian literature is the former director of the Instituto Cervantes in Bucharest, Joaquin Garrigos Bueno a prolific translator of more than 30 Romanian novels in particular of Mircea Eliade (Boda en el cielo, Diario intimo de la India, Los jovenes barbaros, La noche de San Juan) and Emil Cioran (El ocaso del Pensamiento, El libro de la quimeras, Brevario de los vencidos,) but also of Camil Petrescu, Emil Voiculescu, Liviu Rebreanu and other classics and contemporary writers.

[


The Best Times, This Side of the Atlantic…

October 20th, 2009 · Comments Off on The Best Times, This Side of the Atlantic… · Books, International Media, PEOPLE, Reviews

All these events were chronicled by the Irish Times during its twists and turns of fortunes and soul-searching which remains truly amazing in being able to secure a steady readership AND survive through thick and thin. Dermot James relates these events from within with the sharp eye of the journalist and his story is riveting – it is not just about the humdrum of life of editors but reflects the beating heart of a whole nation: he tells it with zest and irony in the best tradition of Irish humour. The reader is certainly not disappointed – there is no dull moment, just an alert pace where light stories intermingle with hard facts which caught the staff of the Irish Times at the core of each historic event.

This particular phenomenon of change and adaptation through choppy waters merits in itself the attention of the media in other countries which were equally visited by revolutions, civil wars, strife and radical changes of government and of political directions. Such is the case of the young nations of Eastern Europe, in a broad way going through a same process of renewal as Ireland did, but also of nations of Central Europe who lived through upheavals which toppled monarchies brought in dictatorships, suffered the indignity of defeat or the weighty burden of victory: how might their newspapers been affected? The difference between the Irish Times and its counterparts on the Continent of Europe is that the former has survived through constant change, whilst in most of the other countries, especially behind the Iron Curtain newspapers disappeared overnight. So far as the ethos of this web site is concerned the comparison with the Romania media is of special interest, as one feels that the Irish Times offers a good template for comparison.

[