Miłosz’s Biology Lesson

Dariusz Czaja


Over the years Visions from San Francisco Bay (1969) has proven to be essential both to Miłosz’s life and to his writings. It was there that he formulated, for the fi rst time with such a force, the theses that would later reappear regularly in his essays and poetry. One vital aspect of the intellectual construction outlined in Visions was the concept of Nature. Miłosz proposed a “presentistic” approach, arguing for the concept of Nature as an indispensable element of contemporary thought. His refl ections were restricted to motifs closely related to his theses about Nature: Nature and beauty, human/animal relations, and the theory of evolution.

Słowa kluczowe: Miłosz, anthropology, Nature, human/animal relations, theory of evolution

Boyd, B. and Pyle, R.M., eds. 2000. Nabokov’s Butterfl ies: Unpublished and Uncollected Writings. Boston: Beacon P.

Collins, F. 2007. The Language of God: A Scientist Presents Evidence for Belief. London: Simon & Schuster.

Coyne, J.A. 2010. Why Evolution Is True. Oxford: Oxford UP.

Cronin, P., ed. 2002. Herzog on Herzog. London: Faber.

Czaja, D. 2009. “Przefarbowany świat. Mitologie polowania” [Re-dyed World: Mythologies of Hunting]. Konteksty 4, 110–125.

Daston, L. 2005. “Intelligences: Angelic, Animal, Human.” Thinking with Animals: New Perspectives on Anthropomorphism. Eds. L. Daston, G. Mitman. New York: Columbia UP.

Daston, L. and G. Mitman. 2005. “The How and Why of Thinking with Animals.” Thinking with Animals: New Perspectives on Anthropomorphism. Eds. L. Daston, G. Mitman. New York: Columbia UP.

Gilson, E., Langan, T. and A.A. Maurer. 1966. Recent Philosophy: Hegel to the Present. New York: Random House.

Gould, S.J. 2001. “Three Facets of Evolution.” How Things Are: A Science Tool-Kit for the Mind. Eds. J. Brockman, K. Matson. New York: William Morrow. 81–86.

Kott, J. 2002. Powiastki dla wnuczek [Stories for My Granddaughters]. Warszawa: Zeszyty Literackie.

Kunicki-Goldfi nger, W.J.H. 1993. Znikąd donikąd [From Nowhere to Nowhere]. Warszawa: Państwowy Instytut Wydawniczy.

Linzey, A. 1995. Animal Theology. Champaign, Illinois: University of Illinois P.

Miłosz, C. 1983. Visions from San Francisco Bay. Trans. R. Lourie. New York: Farrar, Straus and Giroux.

––––– 1983. The Witness of Poetry. Cambridge, Mass.: Harvard UP.

––––– 1989. Widzenia nad Zatoką San Francisco. Kraków: Wydawnictwo Literackie.

––––– 1994. A Year of the Hunter. Trans. M.G. Levine. New York: Farrar, Straus and Giroux.

––––– 1999. Poezje wybrane / Selected Poems. Kraków: Wydawnictwo Literackie.

––––– 2003. New and Collected Poems. New York: Ecco (HarperCollins).

––––– 2010a. O podróżach w czasie [On Time Travel]. Kraków: Znak.

––––– 2010b. Rozmowy polskie 1999–2004 [Polish Talks 1999–2004]. Kraków: Wydawnictwo Literackie.

––––– 2011. Wiersze wszystkie. Kraków: Znak.

Nabokov, V. 1989. Speak, Memory: An Autobiography Revisited. New York: Vintage International.

Nagel, T. 1974. “What Is It Like To Be a Bat.” The Philosophical Review 83 (4), 435– 450.

Pietrzak, Z. 2010. “O nieporozumieniach dotyczących teorii ewolucji i epistemicznych tego konsekwencjach” [On Misunderstandings Concerning the Theory of Evolution and Their Epistemic Implications]. Ewolucja. Religia. Filozofi a [Evolution: Religion: Philosophy]. Ed. D. Leszczyński. Wrocław: Atut. 203–230.

Różewicz, T. 1991. “Świniobicie” [Pig Slaughter]. Płaskorzeźba [Bas-relief]. Wrocław: Wydawnictwo Dolnośląskie.

Sadzik, J. 2004. “Między Światłością i Ciemnością” [Between Light and Darkness]. Recogito 30. http://www.recogito.pologne.net/recogito_30/obserwatorium1_1.htm. Accessed on 17.12.2011.

Serpell, J. 1996. In the Company of Animals: A Study of Animal-Human Relationships. Cambridge: Cambridge UP.

Życiński, J. 2011. “Strukturalna przyczynowość i konwergencja biologiczna w ewolucji kosmicznej” [Structural Causality and Biological Convergence in Cosmic Evolution]. Ewolucja życia i ewolucja wszechświata [Evolution of Life and Evolution of the Universe]. Eds. J. Mączka, P. Polak. Kraków: Copernicus Center Press. 37–49.