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ISSN 1409-6900 | UDK 82+7     Blesok no. 86 | volume XV | September-October, 2012



                     Peer-reviewed journal
Blesok no. 86September-October, 2012

The Innovation and Creativity of the Macedonian XIX Century

p. 1
Valentina Mironska

The Macedonian XIX Century (Makedonsko XIX stoljeće, Rijeka, Croatia, 2011, 245) is a new publication by Goran Kalogjera[1] – a ‘Macedonist’, who has been promoting Macedonian literature, language and culture in Croatia. Through this book, Kalogjera takes on the initiative to represent the Macedonian XIX century by having it summarized from several aspects: social, political, economic and cultural. The book in turn represents a challenging read, as its direct, open and concise manner of presentation is marked by observed opinions, attitudes and evaluations by other Macedonists, namely those of non-Macedonian origins, in regards to ‘our’ nineteenth century.
    Kalogjera’s engagement on the affirmation of Macedonian literature, his understanding of the circumstances surrounding the dynamics of the construction of the Macedonian identity in the XIX century, lies in his affirmative approach to the truth about Macedonia, something which we, as Macedonians, find it to be of paramount importance. He ‘enters’ situations exceptionally well, negotiating with the leaders of the Macedonian national revival movement, the enlightenment-harbingers, and at times, chooses to challenge the opponents of ‘the Macedonian question’ to an open debate. Ostensibly, Kalogjera seems to have accepted the Macedonian cause, and stands for its validity by sharing his personal views, which are the result of original archival materials, as well as examples of Macedonian scientific thought. He is one of a few non-Macedonian scientists who exclusively recognizes and respects the Macedonian scientific thought. At the same time, he knows how to add or re-evaluate things, to problematize matters, which in turn leads all of us, working in the field, to new venues for new research. He is direct, realistic, unpretentions; there are no forgeries or mystifications. His remark addressed to his Macedonian colleagues is related to their pronounced pessimism and skimpiness when it comes to the evaluation and recognition of the results of the national revival movement.
    In this book, history, i.e., all the current issues of the Macedonian XIX century are targeted. The first part, titled “Mercantile, Social and Political Circumstances in Macedonia in the XIX Century”, includes nine studies, in which Kalogjera writes about the geopolitcal and economic conditions, the education system and the language issue, the political position of Macedonia inside the Ottoman Empire, the socio-cultural life, i.e., the libraries, reading rooms and the musical life, the foreign propaganda on the territory of Macedonia, the results of the first revival period and the literary activity (with three articles, titled, “Art Literature”,


1. An honorary member of MANU (The Macedonian Academy of Sciences and Arts), of The Macedonian Writers’ Association, an honorary doctor of philosophy from Sts. Cyril and Methodius University, an honorary consul of the Republic of Macedonia in Croatia, a recipient of the national award “St. Clement of Ohrid”, “The Racin Award”, the Golden Plaque of Sts. Cyril and Methodius University, the Certificate of Appreciation from the International Seminar of Macedonian Language, Literature and Culture, the national award “Orden za zaslugi za Makedonija” (a medal of accomplishment bestowed to promoters of Macedonian culture abroad), etc.

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