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ISSN 1409-6900 | UDK 82+7     Blesok no. 49 | volume IX | July-August, 2006



                     Peer-reviewed journal
Blesok no. 49July-August, 2006

Against the Pre-archival Mentality

p. 1
Jasna Koteska

These lines are dedicated to the book “The Female Side of the Story: The Crisis in Macedonia in 2001” by Aleksandra Bubevska and Miruse Hoxa, Evrobalkan Press, 2006.

    1. “The Female Side of the Story” is about the 2001 war. Remember 2001? That year I lost someone, someone whose history is still not clear. That year I lived in the last apartment block on “Ilindenska” street. The window had a view of Skopska Crna Gora and I could hear, or I thought I could hear, the sounds of war. That year I stopped buying newspapers, whereas many others didn’t begin buying them until then. The newspapers said we had a situation. Just as Bosnia had a situation at first, and later we found out it had been a war, in fact, while we were thinking it was only a situation.
    2. The TV screens in 2001 finally showed us what it means to have your field of vision organised as a map. A map offers a bird's eye view. Military Lego blocks. Your eye circles over the Skopje and Tetovo villages, as if you were a military escadrille pilot. Each night you see the moves of retreat or advancing. The map is clean. It hides the ironed face of death. Behind the map's drama you can sense the death, but in the given moment it has been erased from your field of vision. This book will give you back what the TV map took away from you then. It will bring back death's face and its iconicity. It will definitely show you what the war looked like from the inside.
    3. “The Female Side of the Story” contains six stories, three Macedonian and three Albanian. Every one of them seems sad, terribly grim and absurd in a Becketesque way. Depending on your take on the 2001 war, you'll see everyone in a different light: bewildered, indoctrinated, heroic, hypnotised. Regardless, everyone will look like cannon fodder. Cannon fodder catapulted into the first lines of battle. Cannon fodder that cries. You will see the crying. You will not see the ones from above, who hold the remote controls which teledirect the chip under the skin. Just a terrible pain of the thing that's beneath that skin. Perhaps it's already clear to you who was to blame, and who the victims were, who the awarded and the punished were, who the twice sacrificed were. And

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