Macedonian Literary Criticism of Goran Stefanovski

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Macedonian Literary Criticism of Goran Stefanovski

A paper with a rather promising title “The History and Poetics of Macedonian Drama” by Hristo Georgievski was published in 1996. This comprehensive study that was probably initially conceived as an overview of the overall modern Macedonian drama devotes quite a lot of space to descriptions of the characters and the plot of almost all the plays that had been published up to that year. However, we have to conclude that it fails to develop any theoretical definitions concerning the stages of development of Macedonian drama. The theoretical instrumentarium with which Georgievski operates has been borrowed from a range of other sciences not just literary theory, which leads to a series of terminological inconsistencies and confusion of ideas derived from other social sciences. Though he starts quite ambitiously, Hristo Georgievski is not capable of fully grappling with the huge corpus, nor does he provide adequate periodization or typology.

With regards to Stefanovski’s opus, he is much more successful in identifying and reconstructing Goran Stefanovski’s personal philosophy of life and the world through his explanations of what the author wanted to achieve via the characters and the story. To illustrate our point – after Georgievski states that Jane Zadrogaz is a ritual drama, he claims that: “Stefanovski’s starting point is tradition in which he finds a vital and restorative spirit, while he also paints life in all its complexity and uniqueness, as well as putting an emphasis on the historical and existential tragedy not through factography, but more as a universal category emanating with poetic equivalents“(1996:148).

Hristo Georgievski dedicates more than fifty pages to the dramatic opus of Goran Stefanovski and attempts throughout to detect the values of each individual plot, but sadly he does not successfully pull out this ambitious undertaking. In his book “The History and Poetics of Macedonian Drama”, Georgievski interprets Stefanovski’s plays from a thematic perspective and states that in his first phase Stefanovski is a modern realist, while in the second phase he starts to write postmodernist dramas (Hi-Fi, The False Bottom, Black Hole). However, Georgievski does not provide us with a comparative analysis of the differences between the first and the second corpus of plays, nor does he afford us with any theoretical grounds for these claims.

To sum up, there have been numerous similar papers and critiques about Goran Stefanovski that always seek other contexts rather than just focusing on the literary aspects. They manage to detect in the dramatic text traces of history where there is none, to add philosophy when it is missing, to graft on his work the claim that they serve as an arena for the fight against the Western world and capitalism, but through all that they fail to provide any objective reading of his works.

AuthorAleksandra Dimitrova
Translated byMilan Damjanoski
2019-01-15T10:22:41+00:00 January 5th, 2019|Categories: Literature, Essays, Blesok no. 123|Tags: |0 Comments