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Thomas Bernhard

Thomas Bernhard was an Austrian writer and dramatist of the 20th century who became known primarily for his literary works. Bernhard draws on elements of modern poetry and uses them in his way. His style of poetry is of clear, often fragmentary language accompanied by simple and unembellished metrics.


A deep cynicism and a pessimistic worldview often characterise Bernhard's poems. He defines life as endless suffering and a search for meaninglessness. The poet often uses provocative and sarcastic language to get his message across.


Another characteristic of Bernhard's poems is their proximity to reality. Political and social themes he, often views with a critical attitude. He often describes everyday situations and human relationships in an honest and unembellished way.


Some of his most famous poems are:


"In hora mortis": a poem that addresses the transience of life and the finitude of man.


"The Power of Habit": A poem that describes the effects of routine and everyday life on human life.


"The Cellar" is a poem depicting a person's loneliness and despair in a society without hope.


"I want to know": A poem that questions the importance of knowledge and cognition in human life.


Thomas Bernhard's poetic style can be described as incomplete, cynical and realistic. His works still have a firm place in Austrian and German literature and are essential to modern poetry.



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