Original Research

Die verdonkerende spieël: Simbolistiese trekke in Wilma Stockenstrom se eerste drie bundels

M. Lombard, H. Viljoen
Literator | Vol 14, No 3 | a709 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.4102/lit.v14i3.709 | © 1993 M. Lombard, H. Viljoen | This work is licensed under CC Attribution 4.0
Submitted: 03 May 1993 | Published: 03 May 1993

About the author(s)

M. Lombard, Vista Universiteit, Sebokeng, South Africa
H. Viljoen, Potchefstroomse Universiteit vir CHO, South Africa

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Abstract

This article is an attempt to relate the first three of Wilma Stockenstrom's collections of poetry to international Symbolism. First we discuss possible links between her work and Symbolism. The mam emphasis then falls on Stockenstrom’s method of Symbolism, the possible symbolist tone of her work and prominent symbolist motifs in her work. Finally we consider some manifestations of the symbolist oilier world in these collections. The conclusion arrived at is that Stockenstrom's earlier work shows many of the main characteristics of Symbolism so that her work can be regarded as a continuation of the symbolist tradition. This tradition undergoes three important transformations in her work: the European world of symbolist poetry is replaced by an archeologically rich but mute African world, modern science and technology replaces the medieval system of reference of Symbolism, and sound and musicality p la y a much smaller part in Stockenstrom's poetry. Stockenstrom's cynical, ironic tone, the use of opaque kafkaesque symbols, her emphasis on tentative visions, her distrust of language and her tendency to relativize frames of reference in the endings of her poems, show that Stockenstrom's poetry has already crossed the boundary to Modernism.

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