When Pumpkins Bloomed

30. June 2017.

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At the Book Fair in Andrićgrad this afternoon the narrative opus of Dragoslav Mihailović, one of the most original and prominent Serbian prose writers, was presented. A great writer this afternoon was a guest of Andrićgrad, and about his books spoke prof. Dr. Milo Lompar, Milisav Savić and Želidrag Nikčević.

– This is a true literary holiday and we are honored that the great Serbian narrator Dragoslav Mihailović is with us – said the famous writer Želidrag Nikčević who reminded the guests of the Book Fair of Mihailović’s won prizes, at the time when the novel “When Pumpkins Bloomed” was written.

– When you have many years and have written a lot of books, like me, it may happen that your collection of works be printed. “Laguna” and “Službeni glasnik” will print my collection of works, in 18 books. In a month, my fifth book for “Laguna” comes out and it’s called “Zlotvori”. It is a book about people who have inflicted evil on others. Some of the people who appear in the book are Tito, Kardelj and many of their associates – said Mihailović, who welcomed the guests of the Book Fair in Andrićgrad.

Then this great writer read an excerpt from the very beginning of the announced book.

Writer Milisav Savić reminded that twenty years ago he wrote a text called “Eight Answers plus Six Subsequent”, which deals with the work and life of Dragoslav Mihailović. In the first answer, he speaks about writers and literature. The second answer is on the questions concerning what it means to be a biography writer. Regarding the third answer, Savić talks about the length and actuality of the writer. The fourth answer concerns the natural gift of the writer. The fifth answer answers the question of Mihailović’s creative process and answers questions concerning the narrative force. In the sixth answer, Mr Savić is dealing with messages. In the seventh answer, he speaks about the language used by Dragoslav Mihailović, with a special reference to the dialect. The eighth answer is about what the audience feels about the writers. Savić said that he had written these answers twenty years ago, and added six.

The first one is about how long Mihailovic has been writing, using examples from the first book “Fred, Good Night”. Another additional answer is about the comparison of the entire Mihailović prose with classical works. The third answer is about the love of the author he felt about his characters. The fourth answer provides an insight into the simplicity that turned into great works.

The fifth answer speaks of how Mihailovic creates his stories without copying. The sixth answer is dedicated to the feelings that arouse Mihailović’s prose.

At the end of his presentation, Milisav Savić has estimated that Dragoslav Mihailovic is the greatest living Serbian prose writer.

On a number of examples, Professor Milo Lompar has illustrated his claim on Mihailović’s more than a diverse literary theme.

– Dragoslav Mihailović has contributed to the restoration of modernist narrative. He is a writer who is moving in all directions, joining truly distant worlds. He tries to convey the experience of human destiny and succeeds in doing so. Dragoslav Mihailović always gives the reader some suggestion that can be illustrated by numerous examples from his novel “Morava is Burning”. Constant Mihailović’s narrative imagination can be seen as a runaway from pathetic. One can not escape from the main theme of Mihailović’s writing, which is Goli otok. Something like this is happening here with Solzhenitsyn. Mihailović adds a certain amount of engagement in his writing outside the framework of the camp or the gangway. His engagement in linguistic frameworks can be reduced to writing in the dialect and to the love of that dialect, which he often popularized with his books. This popularization contributed to the fact that his books were very read.

Dragoslav Mihailović is not a great writer because he is a local writer. His characters and drama are universal, but he is a representative of the Moravian region, which appeared with the prince Lazar, and which will later explain the Kosovo tradition. He is, therefore, a great poet of Moravian Serbia.

Its stem cell is trust in individual people, i.e. characters. Sensibility is a word that is the basis of Mihailović’s creativity.

Dragoslav Mihailović, creatively, touches Dragiša Vasić in several points. In Mihailović we can meet a lot of publicity.

When we greet the work of Dragoslav Mihailović today, we continue the series of great Serbian writers – said Professor Lompar.

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