Macedonian Literary Criticism of Goran Stefanovski

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Macedonian Literary Criticism of Goran Stefanovski

    “… the Macedonian dramatic text of the 1970s is always written again, it is continuously subject to corrections, variations and adaptations in the process of theatrical production, directorial interpretation and stage adaptation“ (2001:199).

Why does Kjulavkova take Jane Zadrogaz as the milestone? This is due to the fact that she locates in the text all the elements of the postmodern, because the play is a: “…pastiche which incorporates, quotes, paraphrases or ironically references texts which are already written, uttered, told, sung or dramatized.“ (2001:201).

In this context, we only reference this excellent study in order to point out how the publication of Jelena Luzhina’s doctoral dissertation opened up room for debate in Macedonian literary science, with Kjulavkova being one of the first scholars to utilizeLuzhina’s theoretical findings in order to produce an argumented criticism of a specific Goran Stefanovski play.

Following her, in 2000 Vesna Mojsovska-Chepishevska published in the magazine Kulturen Zhivot her article “On the Character-That-Is-Not-There in Chernodrinski Coming Back Home” where she attempts to identify intertextual elements in the text of Chernodrinski Comes Back Home on multiple levels. Her starting point is the statement by Bogomil Gjuzel that in the play Vojdan Chernodrinski is the Character-That-Is-Not-There, which Chepishevska uses to underline the intertextual elements on the levels of the text, the level of biographical facts, as well on the level of significance within the framework of Macedonian literature.

One of the more interesting texts related to Goran Stefanovski is the work of Naum Panovski entitled “Goran Stefanovski’s Sarajevo or Sarah in Horrorland”. Even though the text is quite subjective and primarily intended to glorify Stefanovski, still this essay contains an accurate perception of the play Sarajevo. Panovskiconsiders the text to be a phantasmagorical fresco depicting the disappearance of the precious silver soul of Sarajevo. According to him, Sarajevo presents the story through the dying eyes of Sarah who is dreaming of the future of Sarajevo while perceiving the painful present and discovering its inspirational past, while all along she is assigning roles to the other unfortunate souls around her. This article, besides being primarily concerned with the theatrical and stage potential of the text, still manages to come to a series of interesting conclusions. Panovski detects the most specific element of Stefanovski’s craft – the ability to design short scenes and construct a fragmented dramatic structure which provides a cinematic rhythm through the use of precise and direct dialogues.

Based on the large corpus of researched articles and texts on the works of Goran Stefanovski, we reached the conclusion that Macedonian drama (as well as Macedonian literature in general), during the period of late socialism suffered from a lack of precise literary interpretation, primarily due to the lack of theoretical definitions about the periodization and interpretation of the extensive dramatic opus that was created during this time. We certainly include here the dramas of Goran Stefanovski. Despite the fact that his debut Jane Zadrogaz represents one of the most explicit examples of a postmodernist text, Macedonian literary criticism is still unable to interpret adequately Stefanovski’s first text, while the critical analyses that date back to the 1980s are not worthy of the greatness of his genius.

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