Lyre: Studies in Poetry and Lyric is a peer-reviewed, online and open-access journal in English. It is published by Bar-Ilan University Press and the Department of Literature of the Jewish People at Bar-Ilan University. Lyre is unique in its dedication to highlighting the transcultural and translingual dimensions of both the Poetry of Hebrew and Jewish Languages, and the Poetry of Israel. Furthermore, Lyre is also unique in being composed of two sections: one which contains scholarly articles on poetry, as well as essays by poets; and one which contains original poetry. This combination creates a space for conversation between scholars and poets, which further crosses cultures and languages. While there are literary journals in which poetry is published, and journals in which scholarly articles on poetry are published—Lyre positions poetry at the center of an innovative approach. This approach delineates a shared space for scholarship and poetic creativity, focusing on a major genre that spans historical periods, languages and cultures of Jewish and Israeli experiences.
One target audience for Lyre comprises scholars in Jewish Studies. As an interdisciplinary academic discipline, Jewish Studies explores a variety of aspects — such as history, languages, religious thought — which is greatly enriched by the parallel, and integrative, study of poetic texts created in different historical periods, in different languages, as well as in response to different religious experiences and rituals. A second target audience for Lyre comprises scholars and poets who are interested in Poetry and the Theory of Poetry. As such, this journal brings both the Poetry of Hebrew and Jewish Languages, and the Poetry of Israel, to the knowledge of an international forum, thereby promoting a discussion of these texts within a comparative, transnational context.
Each issue of Lyre contains 5-7 articles, submitted in English. In addition to regular issues, special issues on particular topics will also be published. The international editorial board works closely with the journal’s editors to provide a high quality and insightful process of reviewing (both reviewing themselves and assisting in turning to additional scholars). The scholarly articles focus on the study of poetry in various languages, forms and periods. Topics include, for example: assessing poetry from historical and critical perspectives; examining questions of narratology and performance; examining the interrelationship between poetry and media (poetry networks, interactive poetry), as well as between poetry and music. In addition, special essays written by poets are included in the issues. These essays present the poet’s voice in reflecting on the creative process, as well as on the situations of writing poetry.
In the section entitled Poetry of Israel: Here and Now, we turn to poetic texts currently being written in Israel, which reflect the transcultural and translingual aspects of Israeli society. This provides the opportunity to discover a tapestry of poetry in many languages — rich, varied and expressive. Poets are represented through two or three original poems that illuminate the unique voice of each writer. The poems are published in the original language, accompanied by an English translation. These English translations — provided by the poets, with the assistance of the editors and editorial board — make such poetry available to a wider, international audience. In each issue this section is devoted to one topic. Furthermore, a short introduction in English is provided, describing this topic’s uniqueness and importance, as well as emphasizing what can be learned from it about poetic expression in general, as well as poetry written here and now — in Israel — in particular.