By Fadil Paçrami
The twelfth part
Memorie.al / What is prison? It is the place where those who have been sentenced to deprivation of liberty are kept, we would say by reading any dictionary. But that is little. Prison and freedom – two opposites. Previously: what is freedom? In short: to be free means to do what you want, to think and act as you wish in the exercise and fulfillment of your freedoms and rights, as a person and as a citizen, but always without harming and violating others. . Again: to think and act. We are talking about democratic freedoms, from those of speech, press, assembly and organization in various parties and associations, ensuring the conditions where ideas, requests and human wills can find expression and concretization, from those of the biological-related plan with the being itself, to those of the social plan, related to the ways of living.
Continues from last issue
In the letter sent to all three of you (as personalities… well-known in the field of letters, arts, science… dated 6.9.1988, among other things, I also wrote: “I thought of sending you this letter, which in any case, you should know that this creativity also exists and where it is and can be found… I will also send you the titles of the plays that I have written so far (I have others in my hands, for which I can tell you inform later)”.
Precisely, regarding the latter – “I have others in my hands, about which I can announce later”, although the total number from 50, reached 60, and I thought that on 6.9.1990, after two years , to let you know about 10 other dramas that I had written.
But since I was forced to go to the hospital – prison in Tirana, because I was sick (I had surgery on the postman and I have a pretty big stone in my right kidney, and apparently I will have to do a second operation), I couldn’t write to you at that time, so I’m starting now as soon as I got back.
Here are the titles:
- He ran away from the show.
- In search of a truth (or: Pashai from death)
- Never again!
- A rainy night like this.
- Over the years.
- Between two times.
- The Laughing Masks Club.
- The defeated.
- The importance of guilt.
It happened that there in the prison-hospital (or more precisely the prison-hospital, I mean more preferably the prison), I wrote 4 more plays (of course, firsthand), which I am now throwing away.
Here are the titles of these:
- Lives that speak.
- A not too late.
- Disturbed sleep.
- The morning of a long night.
If that letter didn’t tell you anything at the time, neither did the creativity I was talking about (at least I don’t know how or what you thought), that’s your business. If I have burdened you with a burden that you cannot bear (which is part of those “Chronicles of the past when the X’s or the Y’s, after raising such issues according to them, had consequences, were criticized, lost their positions, etc. .,” I will be sorry that I tried, and for the disappointment (that he is not the only one, this one will also be in line with the others). I want to understand your situation, but a mind tells me that today, when time has spoken, proved and disproved, so many unknowns, one must not be reconciled to silence (this prompted me to turn to him again) prompted also by these verses – the creed of John London:
“If you have hidden the truth, you have
Covered, you didn’t get up from the place
And you didn’t speak at the meeting, did you?
Spoke and you didn’t tell the whole truth,
To know you have betrayed the truth”,
that sound so called today. If the question arises: how is it possible to create in those conditions?! In addition to the reasons and explanations I gave you in the previous letter, I want to add this statement of our outstanding revivalist – Sami:
“A man may lose all his freedom, but if he keeps his freedom of thought, he is still free,” to which I have adhered even before the events of these last two years, now even more so. If you think: How many were made – over 50, what level should they be?! I can only tell you this: I work 10 or more hours a day, my mind only dwells on them, I have an increasing ideological and emotional load, sometimes I feel that I surpass myself.
Also this: in heavy and difficult times (and these have been many, you understand them), I repeated to myself the lines of our great Miggen, in “Song unsung”, and others and continued the work diligently, as I do now (since I still have a few years of life left), I didn’t let what I thought “sleep”, nor “wait”, so that I don’t become their “grave”, otherwise I would have gone crazy.
I follow closely: both creativity, as much as possible in the conditions I am in – “from my hole”, as well as today’s developments for freedom of thought and creation, in literary and artistic circles, the discussions that take place. General words still, not at the required levels and dimensions, to make up for lost time, often with zigzags, inhibitions and freezes – recently even more – there is a lack of first self-criticism and the correction of what has gone wrong , without these it will drag.
I have unshakable hopes and convictions (that the started process is unstoppable, no matter how hard the dark forces try, even the deceptive ones), for quality steps in the near future, which call for more, from everyone.
Greater Kosovo, 11.10.1990
FOR A LITTLE COURAGE AND SOME WISDOM
Excerpts from two letters addressed to Ramiz Ali, as the first secretary of the Central Committee of the Party, where they talk about issues of creativity.
From the beginning
Before that, a young man published a poem, which, among other things, said:
“We hesitate to put the dots on i
For a little courage
Allow me, then, with “a little courage”…!
Even when it started – in 1973, even after, even now, it insists that at that time, there was no concern, as was said, for the literary and artistic creativity itself, for perhaps anyone…! Time, this strict but fair judge, proves that:
– Literature and arts received a heavy blow in the beginning of the 70s, which led to that “frozen state”, from which it is still not coming out even today. The facts show that in many genders, those peaks of those years are not being reached, although there is no shortage of talents, others emerge from day to day. Even in the press, there is concern about schematism, dim reflection of reality, avoidance of sharp conflicts of the time, thematic narrowness, lack of thought and creative courage, etc., which are no longer the case but are becoming the way, exactly why acted wrongly in the 4th Plenum and after it.
– Lets take another aspect: the treatment of topics with conflicts “among us”, the appreciation of the creativity of the 60s, the addition of publications from progressive world literature and the bringing of more films from abroad were called as wrong. painting exhibitions, such as the “Spring” one with a free theme – unlike the standard requirements in the cases of national holiday anniversaries, the staging of foreign dramas and operas, remarks to literary and artistic criticism, which was not yet saying a words in mind, criticisms of backwardness in the field of theory and history of literature and arts, etc. Recently, I noticed that some of these same remarks and criticisms are being made, no longer being called wrong as before, but as the demands of the time.
Doesn’t the question arise: where was the wrong one then and where is the new one today?! If we stumbled for so many years and called things wrong that weren’t, why are we reluctant to say why?! The truth is that creators were restrained for a while, they don’t feel liberated and they don’t believe in what they are told today about creative freedom and so on. So, they also hold back and wander, they do not see clearly and fear that; the words can be returned and continue the same way. Did I overdo it? No, I tell you what others dare not and wait in vain to tell you, much less flatterers – these turn the tables according to the moon, but never tell the truth.
– One more thing: from the press, apart from the fluctuations, sometimes I also notice withdrawal from some things that started to be said, although in a half-voice, suffocating. I read some notes that I have kept on some occasion, hoping that something is playing, but only a call for more thought and creative freedom, remarks, criticisms, requests for new topics and findings, in means of expression, for higher levels qualitative and that’s it, it doesn’t move any further. Why? The issues were resolved, enough of that, no more?! How far did it run or where are the developments as a whole stopped, that is, also in the field of literature and arts?! This will not be forgotten: creators are like that barometer, they quickly feel the winds, cyclones and anticyclones and whips. I often ask: why is he reluctant? What is expected? What’s stopping you?
I also have these questions:
– Do you read what I wrote to you, or do you knock on a closed door, where they don’t hear, but don’t want to hear?
– How should one: be silent or raise one’s voice loudly when one sees injustices?
– Me, how should I do?
– What I’m talking about will become a thing, if not yet, what else is left for me?!
Don’t overestimate some things, like: truth, right?
– Who is interested and in whose benefit is it, not to find out how and why all this was done, not to let this matter of mine take its course?
– Can we still let the past, present and future of one and the other, as well as the works of the creators, be determined by the intrigues and dirty files of the police?
They have to be given way somehow, or it will be another disappointment.
From the second
I am addressing you for two things, which maybe I will be told: what do we, what do you want, with these, they will not meet, nor will anyone know what, what do you think? I called them useful for the country, so I thought I could write to you.
- Reading carefully some writings by Rexhep Qosja – truly an outstanding personality of Albanian culture today, I have noticed that he deals with the cultural and artistic heritage, not only that of tradition, but also of today in the territories outside the homeland and in Albania , as an all-Albanian whole.
So do creators, researchers and others. And not only him, but also many of the most prominent authors in Kosovo. Completely correct as an opinion, correct from the scientific point of view, also from the political point of view regarding the unity of the nation. I am not going to argue why; I say that there is no need.
Precisely because I call it so, taking into account the recently created situation and the difficult conditions in which the Albanian culture of Kosovo has been placed, it is not known what size it will take with the way it has started, I have the opinion that, all the more in us, from our creators and researchers, cultural, artistic and scientific centers, to act in the same way. I want to say: treat all Albanian literature as a whole – pan-Albanian.
So, to publish their literary and other creations; to be played on the stages of theaters, opera and ballet as well as by our symphony orchestras, their works; to broadcast their popular and elaborate songs on radio and television; to talk about the criticism of our researchers in articles and textbooks of history and school ones, or in publications on theory, literature and arts, more widely and according to the values of the works of their authors, to become known writers, composers, painters, singers and others, including critics and researchers from Kosovo, other Albanian lands and the diaspora. Not that it has not been done in this direction, recently something more, but I mean, as a conception of the issue.
- Not long ago I read in “Zërin e Populli” and other newspapers that the Higher Pedagogical Institute of Shkodra was named after Luigj Gurakuqi.
It is known what a prominent figure he is as a man of culture, so he deserved it. It was good for me. On this occasion, I thought that, in continuation and function of those goals, which preceded such a decision, I would express this complementary opinion: wouldn’t it be appropriate and isn’t it time, since the cultural development today has also come to primary plans, to erect statues to prominent people of culture, alongside those of the War, etc.? I think yes. Not only do they deserve it for their values and all that they bequeathed to us, but it serves both today and the future, to encourage generations towards knowledge, in all fields of culture, science, etc.
In Shkodër, the word goes, there is a worthy memorial with artistic value, for the Heroes of Vigu, a statue for Isa Boletini and some busts for other figures, as far as I know; but statues can also be erected for Luigj Gurakuqi, Migjeni, Mjeda, etc. Likewise in Tirana, and in other cities, as for the Frashëri brothers, Fan Nolin and others, of course according to a sequence and by chance. I just expressed a thought and a desire; maybe it is seen in place.
Burrell, 20.5. 1989
For example: I once wrote you something about the theater, which is supposed to be built in Tirana. Please don’t call me excessive memories and thoughts of this kind, as well as the ones above, that I can make and express to you later. Once upon a time, Nikola Ivanai, who created neologisms out of the desire to enrich the language, said: “I am like that seller, who puts cherries (kinds of goods) on the market, if they are useful and serve people, let them use them , if not, let them remain, to whom I will not harm”. Prison cells, where people spend a lot of time with themselves, are also a place of meditation.
WHY IS HE HESITATING WHAT IS HINDING…?!
Parts of two letters addressed to Foto Çami, as the secretary of the Central Committee of the Party for propaganda, and for issues of creativity.
In your speech at the meeting with writers and artists, you say the following at the end:
“Let’s discuss more about everyone’s works, even more broadly about society’s problems. Society needs everyone’s opinion to be in motion, it needs to confront, beat these opinions widely… to discuss these openly, without being afraid of making a mistake. Even if someone expresses himself wrongly, let’s not give them nicknames that inhibit thought… Thought gains strength and turns into conviction precisely in the fire of debate…” (“Drita” 19.2. 1989).
Without going into other issues, it seems to me that this is the essence, this is also the way out for all who are concerned with the developments of literature and arts that are required today. Therefore, freedom to discuss and demand is needed, without which creativity is difficult. Here, I will also focus on this letter, which I thought I could send you on this occasion.
The need for debate and brainstorming has been talked about several times, calls have been made, even more so in recent years. But what happens, why is he reluctant? The question will be asked more openly: What’s stopping you? Even more openly: how much they – the writers and the artists – have formed the belief that it is about a real calling, which the time demands, from where; “society needs everyone’s thinking to be in motion”, and not like before?
You say: “Let’s discuss these things openly, without fear of making a mistake. Even if someone makes a mistake, don’t call them nicknames, which inhibit thought.” But we must recognize, for many years it was not like this, there was also a bitter precedent (I am limiting myself here) back then, in 1973, on the eve and after the 4th Plenum, when without reason or cause, they were simple “nicknames”, but names such as; “enemy”, “conspirator”, “anti-national”, “traitor”, etc., which has been shocking and with serious consequences, for certain persons and the minds of people – the country as a whole, which are not forgotten, nor are they erased in two words, or call whatever. That’s how it happened, where should we start, I think.
From this, in order to give a guarantee that it will not happen like that, to remove people’s fear and increase their confidence, as far as I understand and think, some other mechanisms are needed, which are not I will be reluctant to tell you: they begin, with the correction of all how it was done and how badly it was done at that time, are reinforced with an open and engaging critical attitude, in front of the social opinion, and materialize with the transition from words and calls, to deeds through facts and concrete evidence. The key found for what you have done, thanks to you, must be set in motion. And this should be seen by the people.
(The steppe, which has and stands out, was established after wounds were seen and pain was felt. Confidence, to be rooted, will concretely see the healing of wounds and no more pain is felt. Disbelief comes more slowly and takes more time to take place – this is also human nature. Whether we like it or not, that’s how it is, therefore in all cases, it is required to be attentive to what we do, calculating all the consequences, therefore it is said that reckless actions are paid dearly, therefore it must always be preserved, so that people do not get disappointed, because then it is difficult with them.)
The creators, the real ones, not just anyone, of course, are people with aspirations for the country and for themselves, they look more to the future, they have their own thoughts and personality, so it’s not easy with them – either as objects, on which act, whether as subjects with a complex world. You don’t have anything to do with them, that’s how they are and should be, it’s a mistake if they forgot these features of theirs (here I see myself with self-critical eyes once), with whom you find the language of communication and understanding, only through obedience, mutual respect and an open attitude based on sound principles, up to ethical and moral ones.
I add that; knowledge, civic courage and honesty go together; if one is missing, the balance is broken; the other two become numb, the whole is endangered. Memorie.al
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