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C.P. Cavafy Forum

C. P. Cavafy Music Resource Guide 

This C. P. Cavafy Music Resource Guide is the product of research at the University of Michigan on song and music settings of Cavafy's poetry. The list of over 100 bibliographic entries aspires to be not exhaustive but containing every composition (though not every version) performed in a public setting or recording or in a printed score. It includes all kinds of musical genres and styles whether they set poetry to music or are inspired by Cavafy's life and work. Please send additions or corrections with complete bibliographic information to

The Greek Necropolis at West Norwood

"Greek Necropolis," an illustrated poem with an introduction, "The Greek Necropolis at West Norwood," by Peter Jeffreys (9/4/2018).

"Remembering Cavafy, 150 Years Later” (The National Herald, Dec. 17, 2013)

In honor of Greece’s most celebrated modern author, C.P. Cavafy, we feature an eclectic array of articles from leading Cavafy scholars. Dr. Vassilis Lambropoulos, the C.P. Cavafy Modern Greek Chair in the Department of Classical Studies and Comparative Literature at the University of Michigan, was a tremendous help in providing the names of four contributors, all of who graciously shared their unique perspectives on the renowned poet.

Natalie Bakopoulos, a Lecturer at the University of Michigan, and author of the novel The Greek Shore, is a fiction writer and essayist whose work has been published in the New York Times.

George Economou, Emeritus Professor of English, University of Oklahoma, has published 14 books of poetry and translations, including Complete Plus: The Poems of C.P. Cavafy.

Professor Karen Emmerich teaches comparative literature at the University of Oregon and has studied Cavafy’s archive.

Peter Jeffreys, an English Professor at Suffolk University, has published various articles and books on Cavafy.

We present the articles in alphabetical order by the author’s last name which, fittingly, conclude with Prof. Lambropoulos’ piece, the last line of which offers advice to all of us.

Greek Diaspora Intellectuals on "the meaning of Cavafy today"

2013 marks 150 years since Cavafy's birth and 80 years since his death. Early in the year the C.P. Cavafy Chair at the University of Michigan invited several diaspora Greek intellectuals from around the world to participate in the celebration by writing for the "Forum" a short piece on "the meaning of Cavafy today - his life, poetry, prose, reflections, letters, photos, translations, status, reception," whatever they might like.

The idea was to listen to a variety of voices of the Greek intellectual diaspora in the 21st century.  A very special effort was made to also include people who have not published on Cavafy and who are not scholars of literature.

Suggested length was 200 words but shorter or longer pieces were also perfectly acceptable.  Contributors could use any language, style, and format. Happily people responded by using diverse media and idioms.

My only responsibility was to select and invite prospective contributors.  All contributions are posted here without any editorial intervention.

We are honoring the ultimate diaspora poet on his anniversary by posting simultaneously all these contributions. 

Vassilis Lambropoulos

"Cavafy's Debt"

A lecture delivered on 2/25/2013 by Stathis Gourgouris, Professor of Classics, English, and Comparative Literature; Director of the Institute for Comparative Literature and Society, Columbia University


Cavafy Analogues: Ancient Greek, Byzantine, Decadent and Estheticist

A paper by Stavros Deligiorgis, Professor of English and Comparative Literature Emeritus, The University of Iowa


Closing the Window on Cavafy (PDF)

An essay on Cavafy's photographs by Kostis Kourelis, Assistant Professor of Architectural History, Franklin & Marshall College


Can Cavafy be Set to Music? (PDF)

Longer version of an article by Vassilis Lambropoulos and Pantelis Polychronidis published in TO BHMA


Cavafy in his Working Life (PDF)

A paper by Dr. Sarah Ekdawi, Faculty Research Fellow, Oxford University


"Pantoum for C. P. Cavafy and a Translator" (PDF)

A poem by George Economou


C.P. Cavafy's Selected Prose Works (MP3)

A lecture by Peter Jeffreys, Professor, Suffolk University, Department of English

"The Typography of Desire."

Final Papers from Professor Karen Van Dyck’s course on Cavafy at Columbia University (June 2009)


Van Dyck Karen, Karen Emmerich, and James Nikopoulos, “Introductory Notes”.

Mastor, Andriana. “Offbeat Echolalia: Merrill’s Lessons for the Translator of Cavafy’s Poetry”.

Nikopoulos, James. “Cavafy’s Greek (in Translation)”.

Radisoglou, Alexis. “Ethics from a Slight Angle: Cavafy’s Poetry as Historiographic Metafiction”.

Smith, Lytton Jackson. “The Translation of Punctuation: An Analysis of Three Poems by C. P. Cavafy”.Focusing in particular on three poems connected with the sea: “The City”, “In the  Harbour Town”, and “On the Italian Shore”.

Stergiopoulou, Katerina. “Saving the Lacedaimonians: Towards a Translation of Cavafy’s Languages”.

Wade, Elizabeth Wildman. “Beyond Biography: Cavafy’s Homoeroticism in Translation”.

Martin McKinsey: “Where Are the Greeks? Revisiting Cavafy’s ‘Philhellene’” (February 2010).

George Economou: “Dropping Anchor at Ithaca” (October 2008).

Translations of and comments on Cavafy’s “Half an Hour”, “Craftsman of Wine Bowls”, “According to the Recipes of Ancient Greco-Syrian Magicians”.

Stathis Gourgouris: “Poiein―Political Infinitive” (2008).

Curt Hopkins: “Denying Julian: Cavafy’s Julian Poems” (December 2008).

Richard O’Connell: “Parallel Texts” (September 2008).

Peter Jeffreys, “A Mutual Hellenism,” excerpt from a new book on Cavafy (pdf)

Gregory Jusdanis: “Cavafy's Anomaly” (September 2006).

Modern Greek First Online Roundtable: Cavafy

Manuel Savidis' position paper on the state of Cavafy research, "Cavafy Through the Looking-Glass," which we solicited and posted on our website last year, inspired a variety of responses and provoked discussion.

Encouraged by its broad appeal, we invited five academics from the new generation of English-speaking scholars in Modern Greek Studies to write responses and offer their scholarly agenda on Cavafy. The five authors teach in Australian, British, and American universities. They have all published and presented at conferences extensive work on the Alexandrian writer. Their responses have methodological ramifications for Modern Greek cultural studies in general and may in turn generate further discussion.


Manuel Savidis, “Cavafy through the Looking-Glass” (Febr. 2005)

Anthony Dracopoulos, “On Reading Cavafy: The Man or the Poetry” (Febr. 2006)

Peter Jeffreys, “Cavafian Catoptromancy: A Response to Mr. Savidis” (Febr. 2006)

Vrasidas Karalis, “The Transcultural and the Individual in Cavafy: A Brief Response” (Febr. 2006)

Dimitris Papanikolaou, “From the Darkrooms of Philology” (Febr. 2006)

George Syrimis, “The History of Tennis” (Feb. 2006)

Manuel Savidis, “Some Notes on the Cavafy Forum” (March 2006)