"... a pioneering effort in English-language studies on Albania." --Nicholas C. Pano Albanian history is permeated by myths and mythical narratives that often serve political purposes, from the depiction of the legendary "founder of the nation," Skanderbeg, to the exploits of the KLA in the recent Kosovo War. The essays in Albanian Identities, by a multinational, multidisciplinary team of scholars and non-academic specialists, deconstruct prevalent political or historiographical myths about Albania's past and present, bringing to light the ways in which Albanian myths have served to justify and direct violence, buttress political power, and foster internal cohesion. Albanian Identities demonstrates the power of myths to this day, as they underpin political and social processes in crisis-ridden, post-totalitarian Albania.
Albania is not well known by outsiders; it was deliberately closed to the outside world during the communist era. Now it has thankfully become free again, its borders are open and it can be visited, and it is increasingly integrating with the rest of Europe and beyond. Unfortunately, Albania has had its share of problems in the post-communist era; it's a land of destitution and despair, thanks in part to the Albanian mafia, which has turned the country into one of blood-feuds, kalashnikovs, and eternal crises. Yet, Albania is, in essence, a European nation like any other and will soon, it is to be hoped, advance and take its proper place in Europe and the world. The second edition of the Historical Dictionary of Albania relates the history of this little-known country through a detailed chronology, an introduction, a bibliography, appendixes, and over 700 cross-referenced dictionary entries on significant persons, places, and events; institutions and organizations; and political, economic, social, cultural, and religious facets.
Albania and Europe in a Political Regard is a multidisciplinary work which aims to develop different points of view in the field of social sciences. In this sense, it is not by chance that the chapters cover a variety of different disciplines like history, sociology, political science and philosophy. These chapters stand alone and, at the same time, create a whole network of relationships between Albania and Europe. An important element of this work is its multidimensional considerations of Europe; it is conceptualised on a number of different levels throughout the chapters, sometimes as a continent, sometimes as an organization, and other times as a leader. In some chapters, Europe is under...
Ismail Kadare has experienced a life of controversy. In his own country and internationally he has been both acclaimed as a writer and condemned as a lackey of the Albanian socialist dictatorship. Coming of age after occupation and war, Kadare (b. 1936) belonged to the first generation of new Albanians. In a land where writers were routinely imprisoned, Kadare produced the most brilliant and subversive works to emerge from socialist Eastern Europe. His work brings to an end the century whose literary beginnings were marked by the terror to which Kafka gave his name. The inaugural award of the International Man-Booker Prize for Literature in 2005 marked an important milestone in the global recognition of Kadare. Ironic, multi-layered and imaginative, Kadare's writing is profoundly opposed to ideology. Through critical analysis of a representative selection of Kadare's works, Peter Morgan explains for a wide audience how Kadare survived and wrote in the repressive Albanian Stalinist environment. Peter Morgan is Professor of European Studies at the University of Western Australia.