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Publication - Professor Robert Vilain

    A Poem, A Dancer and a Painting

    Rainer Maria Rilke’s ‘Spanische Tänzerin’


    Vilain, R, 2017, ‘A Poem, A Dancer and a Painting: Rainer Maria Rilke’s ‘Spanische Tänzerin’’. German Life and Letters, vol 70., pp. 300-313


    After a reading of Rilke's ‘Spanische Tänzerin’ that unpicks the three main layers of imagery and explores how they interact, this article investigates Rilke's relationship with the Spanish painter Ignacio Zuloaga in order to dispel confusions about an event and a painting that are often felt to have inspired the poem. A fourth, poetological interpretative layer is exposed, and via the trope of the poet-as-magus, echoes (perhaps conscious) of the 1906 text in poems from the 1920s, and links with Die Aufzeichnungen des Malte Laurids Brigge are suggested.

    Full details in the University publications repository