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English  Robert Elsie

Writer, translator, interpreter, specialist in Albanian studies


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Under the Banners of Melancholy
Collected Literary Works

Translated from the Albanian by Robert Elsie

Albanian Studies, Vol. 8

ISBN 978-1508675990
Centre for Albanian Studies, London 2015
157  pp.

This volume presents the literary work (prose and poetry) of the northern Albanian writer Migjeni (1911-1938). The main theme of his literary work was misery and despair. Previous generations of Albanian writers had sung the beauties of the Albanian mountains and the sacred traditions of the nation, whereas Migjeni now opened his eyes to the harsh realities of life, to the appalling level of misery, disease and poverty he discovered all around him. He was a writer of despair who saw no way out, who cherished no hope that anything but death could put an end to his suffering. “I suffer with the child whose father cannot buy him a toy. I suffer with the young man who burns with unfulfilled sexual desire. I suffer with the middle-aged man drowning in the apathy of life. I suffer with the old man who trembles at the prospect of death. I suffer with the peasant struggling with the soil. I suffer with the worker crushed by iron. I suffer with the sick racked by all the diseases of the world... I suffer with man”


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