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Articles tagged "Croatia"

The Return of the Narrative: Miljenko Jergović’s “The Walnut Mansion”

Miljenko Jergović (Sarajevo, 1966) is just enough younger than David Albahari (1948) and Dubravka Ugrešić (1949)—the best-known writers both in the region and abroad of the generation preceding his—to allow him the breathing room to step away decisively from the postmodern voice that propelled the literatures of Bosnia, Croatia, and Serbia through the 1990s and early 2000s. The Walnut Mansion, his first novel (Zagreb, 2003), demonstrates a strong turn to...

Sunset in August

They usually went out at sunset, as the sun and reflections were losing their power of revelation, so they walked along the meadow more confidently and breathed in the air saturated with floral scents. That year the sunsets were blood-red; each evening the sun died from its wounds and that death, which repeated itself from one evening to the next, was probably the most beautiful sight they had seen in their colorless lives. The grass lawn stretched for miles, only here and there held down...

Letters without Envelopes

Mara's first letter came in the autumn of the late 1980s. The fact that she had gotten my address in Switzerland, as she explained at the beginning, seemed incredible to me, almost mysterious. She lived in Dalmatia, in a town I had never been to. She wrote me a two-page letter, mentioning more than once that she was a lesbian, probably the only one in Dalmatia, if not the whole of Croatia. For a number of years, she had been visiting her uncle in Zurich and particularly her friend...

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from The Ministry of Pain

Like the desert the northern landscape makes for absolutism. Except that in the north the desert is green and full of water. And there are no temptations, no roundnesses or curves. The land is flat, which makes people extremely visible, and that in turn is visible in their behaviour. The Dutch are not much for contact; they are for confrontation. They bore their luminous eyes into those of another and weigh his soul. They have no hiding places. Not even their houses. They leave their...

from Silence Has Its Sound: Travels through Bosnia

Crossing the Serbian Republic's Border Most of the Republika Srpska border is made of garbage--it seems the whole town of Stolac brings its trash here. I meet three oncoming cars in fifty kilometers. The village of Malineja is marked on the German Automobile Club map, but the reality is that it's completely wiped out. Nature is a little too unspoiled for me, and so I turn up the music in the car full blast to remind me that there's a Somewhere Else. Lisbon, for instance,...

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