Kainar, Josef

Kainar, Josef

 

Born June 29, 1917, in Přerov; died Nov. 16, 1971, in Dobřiš. Czech poet.

The son of a railroad worker, Kainar studied in the faculty of philosophy at the University of Prague from 1937 to 1939. From 1969 he headed the Preparatory Committee of the Czechoslovak Writers’ Union. In the verses from the time of World War II (1939–45), which were published in the collections Incidents and Miniatures (1940), New Myths (1946), and Fates (1947), Kainar expressed a tragic attitude that came from the years of German occupation and from the absurdity of bourgeois relations. In the postwar period Kainar participated actively in socialist reorganization. The verses contained in the collections Great Love (1950), The Czech Dream (1953), I Love Man With a Bitter Love (1959), and Lazarus and the Song (1960) reveal the poetry of everyday working life while exposing philistinism and platitude. Kainar is the author of witty feuilletons written in verse, songs, and topical songs: the collections My Blues (1966) and The Latest News (1971). He also wrote plays such as Ubu Returns, or The Scars Will Not Remain (1949) and The Late Nasredin (1959). Moreover, he wrote verses and tales for children. He translated the works of V. V. Mayakovsky and R. M. Rilke. Kainar received the K. Gottwald State Prize in 1953.

REFERENCES

Hájek, J. [“J. Kainar.”] In his book Osudy a cíle. Prague, 1961. Pages 94–107.
Opelík, J. [“J. Kainar.”] In his book Jak čístpoesie. Prague, 1963. Pages148–65.

L. N. BUDAGOVA

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