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In the small Bosnian town of Visegrad the stone bridge of the novel's title, built in the sixteenth century on the instruction of a grand vezir, bears witness to three centuries of conflict. Visegrad has long been a bone of contention between the Ottoman and Austro-Hungarian Empires, but the bridge survives unscathed until 1914, when the collision of forces in the Balkans triggers the outbreak of World War I. The bridge spans generations, nationalities and creeds, silent testament to the lives played out on it. Radisav, a workman, tries to hinder its construction and is impaled alive on its highest point; beautiful Fata leaps from its parapet to escape an arranged marriage; Milan, inveterate gamble, risks all in one last game on it. With humour and compassion, Andric chronicles the lives of Catholics, Muslims and Orthodox Christians unable to reconcile their disparate loyalties.
Chronicle of three centuries of Balkan life, centering around a great stone bridge in present-day Yugoslavia.
Portrays the dramatic lives of the people living in a small town near a huge stone bridge in the Balkans
A sweeping epic by Nobel Prize-winner Ivo Andrić about power, identity, and Islam set in 19th-century Ottoman Bosnia and Istanbul. Omer Pasha Latas is set in nineteenth-century Sarajevo, where Muslims and Christians live in uneasy proximity while entertaining a common resentment of faraway Ottoman rule. Omer is the seraskier, commander in chief of the Sultan’s armies, and as the book begins he arrives from Istanbul, dispatched to bring Sarajevo’s landowners to heel, a task that he accomplishes with his usual ferocity and efficiency. And yet the seraskier’s expedition to Bosnia is a time of reckoning for him as well: he was born in the Balkans, a Serb and a subject of the Austro-Hungarian Empire, a bright boy who escaped his father’s financial disgrace by running away and converting to Islam. Now, at the height of his power, he heads an army of misfits, adventurers, and outcasts from across Europe and Asia, and yet wherever he goes he remains a stranger. Ivo Andrić, who won the Nobel Prize in 1961, is a spellbinding storyteller and a magnificent stylist, and here, in his final novel, he surrounds his enigmatic central figure with many vivid and fascinating minor characters, lost souls and hopeless dreamers all, in a world that is slowly sliding towards disaster. Omer Pasha Latas combines the leisurely melancholy of Joseph Roth’s The Radetzky March with the stark fatalism of an old ballad.
The book examines the discursive construction of the representation of OC EuropeOCO in the selected writings of leading Serbian writers and intellectuals in the first half of the twentieth century. In addition to being of particular significance in the process of the genesis of our understanding of Europe across the continent, these several decades were crucial for the discursive construction of OC EuropeOCO in Serbian culture: when after the end of the Cold War the debate on Europe became possible again, it was on a discursive level to a large extent determined by the stockpile of images and ideas created between the world wars. The book seeks to answer the following questions: who constructed OC EuropeOCO, and with what authority? For whom were these constructions intended? How was this representation validated? What purposes was it meant to serve? Which issues were raised in comparing OC EuropeOCO with Serbia, and why? Which textual traditions were the elements of this construction borrowed from? How did the construction of the European other define Serbian self-representation? This volume is of interest for all those working in Slavic or East European studies - especially cultural, intellectual and political history of the Balkans - imagology, and European studies."
Ivo Andric (1892-1975), Nobel Prize laureate for literature in 1961, is undoubtedly the most popular of all contemporary Yugoslav writers. Over the span of fifty-two years some 267 of his works have been published in thirty-three languages. Andric’s doctoral dissertation, The Development of Spiritual Life in Bosnia under the Influence of Turkish Rule (1924), never before translated into English, sheds important light on the author’s literary writings and must be taken into account in any current critical analysis of his work. Over his long and distinguished career as a diplomat and man of letters Andric never again so directly or discursively addressed, as a social historian, the impact of Turkish hegemony on the Bosnian people (1463–1878), a theme he returns to again and again in his novels. Although Andric’s fiction was embedded in history, scholars know very little of his actual readings in history and have no other comparable treatment of it from his own pen. This dissertation abounds with topics that Andric incorporated into his early stories and later novels, including a focus on the moral stresses and compromises within Bosnia’s four religious confessions: Catholic, Orthodox, Jew, and Muslim. Z. B. Juricic provides an extensive introduction describing the circumstances under which this work was written and situating it in Andric’s oeuvre. John F. Loud’s original bibliography drawn from this dissertation stands as the only comprehensive inventory of historical sources known to have been closely familiar to the author at this early stage in his development.

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