Liminal Balkans

No. 2 - Year 6 - 06/2016

University of Zadar | ISSN 1847-7755 | SIC.JOURNAL.CONTACT@GMAIL.COM

Editorial

It was our presumption that we would be able to tackle and cover, or at least sketch and therefore possibly define the equivocal notion of the Balkans that led us to the idea of dedicating an issue of our journal to this task. However, as these things usually end up, we were proven wrong. The notion of the Liminal Balkans even after the issue was concluded remained the same – a threshold, an elusive construct whose discursive diversity and complexity only instigated numerous new questions, together with new starting points for alternative debates, coming in the end full circle to the initial premise presented by Maria Todorova about the Balkans as a transitional space....

Literary Translation
Yuri Herrera and Ana Stanić:

Dogodilo se to u srijedu, to prosvjetljenje o kojem svi pričaju. Utorkom je Pedro bio Srce i razbijao gubice. Laka kategorija, žestok borac. S crvenom maskom i trokutastim crvenim boom na glatkim prsima. Uhvatio bi protivnika u polugu i stezao, sve dok se ne prestane opirati, i tek tad rekao sucu – Broji! Nema veze što sudac ne bi brojio ili bi brojio prebrzo, sve je to bilo samo predstava. Publika želi adrenalin, svjetla, galamu s tribina, divlju eleganciju borbe koja ga je svakog utorka navečer pretvarala u zvijezdu. Svakog bi utorka izlazio u noć, ozaren od pobjede.Zatim bi tu energiju ispucao s Marinom u najbližem motelu, ali vrlo brzo, dok bi je vozio kući, stvarnost bi počela nagrizati taj sjaj: jednosoban stan, Marinin stari, sav podbuhao od jeftina alkohola i buljenja u televizor, s poraženim izrazom lica, kao netko tko je svjestan koliko je zapravo jadan, tko neprestano smišlja kako da se izvuče, ali se nikako ne usudi napraviti prvi korak. Tad bi se Srce opet pretvorio u Pedr...

DOI: 10.15291/sic/2.6.lt.4
Literature and Culture
Ana Ille Horvat, University of Zagreb, Croatia:

Sudbine ljudi s ruba portugalskog društva – koji tešku muku svakodnevice žive iz dana u dan, boreći se protiv gladi i neimaštine, svaki na svoj osobit, a opet sličan način – životne su priče koje nam u trećem dijelu tetralogije prikazuje mladi portugalski književnik Valter Hugo Mae. Godine 2004. objavljen je prvi dio tetralogije, pod naslovom o nosso reino (naše kraljevstvo), u kojem je protagonist dječak. Već dvije godine kasnije, 2006., izlazi o remorso de baltasar serapiao (kajanje baltasara serapiaoa), priča o mladosti glavnog lika, a tetralogija završava romanom stroj za pravljenje španjolaca (máquina de fazer espanhóis), objavljenom 2010. godine, koji pripovijeda o sudbini 84 – godišnjeg Antónia Silve, koji starost provodi u domu za umirovljenike.

DOI: 10.15291/sic/2.6.lc.7
Literature and Culture
Raino Isto, University of Maryland, USA:

This article examines the Tirana Independence Monument, first inaugurated in November of 2012 on the hundredth anniversary of Albanian independence from the Ottoman Empire. The monument, designed by Visar Obrija and Kai Roman Kiklas, swiftly fell into disrepair until it was recently renovated in November of 2015. The article analyzes the monument’s function in terms of its doubled existence as a sign of perpetual natality (the possibility of the rebirth of national consciousness) and as a ruin with a spectral pseudo-presence (as an object that continually reminds us of the disjunctures that divorce the present from its historicity). It considers the way the monument’s inauguration relates to the politics of monumentality in contemporary Albania, and argues that the monument’s gradual ruination between 2012 and 2015 can be read as a particular manifestation of the history of the image in late capitalist society.Keywords: spectrality, natality, monumentality, Albania, Tirana, independenc...

DOI: 10.15291/sic/2.6.lc.6
Literary Translation
Theresia Töglhofer and Sanja Cimer:

Ne, kažem.Znam, kad kažem „ne“, to je to s nama, čist račun, rekli smo, karte na stolu, vino, keksi, humor – presuhi; klima, poljupci, zemlja za cvijeće – prevlažni. Dogovori umjesto sapunica kao kod drugih. Ne gubimo vrijeme na stvari koje nikoga ne zanimaju, čak ih ni na televiziji ne gledamo, nemamo televizor, imamo pametnijeg posla, i zabavljamo se jer znamo da se svijet ne može spasiti, mi smo spašeni samo privremeno, vremena je malo i nikada ne bismo skočili, ali osjećali smo se tako živima dok su nam se noge klatile preko ograde na terasi zgrade. Gledala sam vrhove svojih tenisica, stražnja svjetla automobila koji su se tamo dolje redali jedan za drugim poput crvenih mrava, gurali se u kolonama kroz uske ulice, noge mi još nikada nisu djelovale toliko kratko.Kao na moru na madracu na napuhavanje, rekla sam i ugrizla se za jezik, koji je viski razvezao jer nisi izgledao kao da imaš madrac na napuhavanje.Samo te voda nosi kad padneš, objasnio si, zrak te ne nosi, a ipak si bio tak...

DOI: 10.15291/sic/2.6.lt.7
Literature and Culture
Miranda Levanat-Peričić, University of Zadar, Croatia:

Beginning with the concept of "nesting orientalism" introduced by Milica Bakić-Hayden in the sense of patterns of representation used to describe the Other by all ethnic groups in former Yugoslavia, this paper examines four views of "nesting balkanism" in post-Yugoslav literature. First, there is a chronotopic view from the post-Yugoslav exile back to the past, in which the Balkans function as a contextual synonym for the "former homeland," always used in a context of "war," "violence," "primitivism," "disorder" and "cruelty". The second view refers to several Slovenian authors, starting with Slavoj Žižek, Aleš Debeljak and the young novelist Goran Vojnović, who show specific balkanistic representation connected with sevdah and turbofolk music. The third view is connected with travelling and trains, as a frequent topic of orientalistic representation inherited from the Orient Express novels. Finally, the fourth view draws on examples from Dubravka Ugrešić’s descriptions of her "fellow-...

DOI: 10.15291/sic/2.6.lc.5
Literary Translation
Marina Tsvetaeva and Mery Jane White:

5 June 192312 June 192317 June 192319 June 192319 June 1923Marina Tsvetaeva was born in Moscow in 1892 and began to publish in her teens, to multiple good reviews by Russian literary critics. She was a working contemporary of Anna Akhmatova, Osip Mandelstam, Boris Pasternak and Rainer Maria Rilke, all of whom were important to her as rival, lover, correspondent and mentor, respectively, and as they should have been, in her view, from time to time, as her views of their roles in her life were changeable.Tsvetaeva left the Soviet Union in 1922 to reunite with her husband after a four-year wartime separation during the Russian Revolution. She lived as an exile in Berlin, Prague and Paris through 1939. The period of exile in Prague, lasting from August of 1922 to May of 1925, was a very productive period, with new poems arriving every other day or so, or sometimes two poems a day, until her son Georgy (nicknamed Mur) was born in 1924, when the poems slowed to a relative trickle.

DOI: 10.15291/sic/2.6.lt.1