The Genius of the Crowd (translation & analysis)



The Genius and the Crowd – 1909 – Yeghishe Tadevosyan  



c’è abbastanza perfidia, odio, violenza, assurdità nell’essere umano
medio da poter rifornire qualsiasi esercito in qualsiasi giorno

e i migliori nell’assassinio sono quelli che vi predicano contro
e i migliori nell’odio sono quelli che predicano l’amore
e i migliori nella guerra, in definitiva, sono quelli che predicano la pace
quelli che predicano dio hanno bisogno di dio
quelli che predicano la pace non hanno pace
quelli che predicano pace non hanno amore

diffidate dei predicatori
diffidate dei sapienti
diffidate di quelli che leggono continuamente libri
diffidate di quelli che o detestano la povertà
o ne sono fieri
diffidate di quelli che sono pronti ad elogiare
poiché hanno bisogno di elogi in cambio
diffidate di quelli pronti a censurare
hanno paura di quello che non sanno
diffidate di quelli che ricercano folle fedeli
perché da soli non sono nulla
diffidate degli uomini mediocri delle donne mediocri
diffidate del loro amore, è un amore mediocre
che mira alla mediocrità

ma c’è del genio nel loro odio
c’è abbastanza genio nel loro odio da ucciderti
da uccidere chiunque
non volendo la solitudine
non capendola
cercheranno di distruggere tutto quello
che si differenzia da loro stessi.
non essendo capaci di creare arte
non la capiranno
considereranno il loro fallimento come creatori
soltanto come un fallimento del mondo.
non essendo capaci di amare pienamente
giudicheranno incompleto il tuo amore
e poi ti odieranno
e il loro odio sarà perfetto.

come un diamante splendente
come un coltello
come una montagna
come una tigre
come cicuta

la loro arte più raffinata.



The Genius of the Crowd is Bukowski’s message to his readers to find the real reason behind each action and to stay away from those individuals that hide their thoughts, when they clash against their words. It is important to recognize hypocrisy and avoid some classes of people, even the “average” men and women, because their hate can be enormous.
It is hatred disguised as justice that brings them together, because they abhor solitude.
They will try to trigger a feeling of imperfection and failure in you, to make you believe you are incapable of love and art, only because of their inability to love or to create art.


The pessimistic view of the world at the beginning of the poem may derive from Buk’s being raised in the aftermath of World War I, and living through World War, from being depressed since his youth and becoming a chronic alcoholic in order to be able to come to terms with his own life.

He then criticizes the hypocrisy of those who talk about peace but are more violent than the people they are preaching it to, since they lack “peace” or “love” . They are two-faced preachers that spread a message while internally fighting against it and the poet asks his readers to perceive the hidden meaning in the words of a preacher of God, who secretly has not found God, of the preachers of peace who secretly are good at war and murder. It is
It is the peace-loving religions that have killed a lot of people in the name of God since some of those who preach about love are the most guilty of prejudice and hate .

Next, he reiterates his disdain for preachers and religion, and also knowledge becomes something negative because it gives power.
We must also beware of those who ‘detest poverty’ (upper classes) and those who are ‘proud of it ’ (lower classes).
Also people who are prone to praise probably do that just because they expect admiration in return, as well as those who censor probably do it because they don’t know
At that time, Buk’ s writings were not understood, and regarded with disdain and disgust
The people seeking crowds may refer to those he met in LA: Hollywood stars followed by their admirers . Now he finishes the list of unwelcome classes, with average people, whose love should be avoided (he always preferred intense love affairs to emotionless inconsistent stories)

Even though he said to be wary of all these types of people he recognises their ability and the power of their hatred and destruction: unable to create art, they will hate, reject and destroy any artistic work, their hatred will destroy art and love, which seems connected to art

Their hate will be beautiful and costly like diamonds, piercing and deadly like a knife, huge like a mountain, dangerous and majestic like a tiger and poisonous like hemlock (a poisonous herb)
Their hate is all they can give, their finest form of art they can create.




11 thoughts on “The Genius of the Crowd (translation & analysis)

  1. Bella analisi, ma come te hai già detto non bisogna abbracciare questa visione così pessimistica che voleva essere una denuncia, una sirena d’allarme e come tale esagerata. L’umanità è piena d’odio, ma anche ricolma d’amore!
    Buon tutto Luisa 😉

    Liked by 3 people

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