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AndriŒ’s short stories and novels are populated with extraordinary women characters. Women are on equal terms with men in AndriŒ’s writing. Juxtaposed with his famous male characters—for example, Djerzelez, Mustafa the Hungarian, Fra Peter, ñamil, ñorkan, Karadjoz, Karas, Alidede—there are women like Mara, Anika, Fata, the German girl, Lotika, Rajka, Saida, Rifka, and many more, named or unnamed. The titles of AndriŒ’s works often reflect his preoccupation with women: “Anika’s Times,” “The Pasha’s Concubine,” “Woman on the Rock,” “ñorkan and the German Girl,” “Jelena, the Woman Who Is Not,”* “Mila and Prelac,” and The Woman from Sarajevo (among others). Most of AndriŒ’s prose works unfold in the exotic setting of Ottoman Bosnia, a place “between the two worlds of Islam and the West, belonging to both yet ambiguously remote from either one.”1 Both the male and female protagonists of these works are Bosnian Muslims (ethnically Slavs) who converted to Islam to protect their families and property, Orthodox Serbs, Catholic Croats, and Sephardic Jews. However, although AndriŒ’s works are imbued with a sense of history, their subject matter has a universality which is not reducible to simple time and space. Both male and female characters in AndriŒ’s works are psychological studies in miniature. In AndriŒ’s stories the drama of man’s destiny unfolds on this plane rather than in its historical and temporal perspective. The author penetrates and explores the inner world of his characters, their conscious and subconscious, their dreams and nightmares, their fears and obsessions. This inner aspect of their existence is the true subject of AndriŒ’s stories.
*Also cited in this volume as “Jelena, the Woman Who Does Not Exist.”
stands both at the entrance and at the exit of this world. There have been attempts to classify the rich kaleidoscope of AndriŒ’s female characters into two. (a fragment of a once beautiful firmament which illuminated a then happier humanity. just like a gate. Alidede. a character. woman is in the forefront. In AndriŒ’s stories. grief. reflecting the universal order in which he saw both evil and good coexisting side by side. the central character in “Death in Sinan’s Tekke. as many characters span more than one category. Often. three.Women in AndriŒ's Writing 155 AndriŒ depicts both the good and the bad in his characters as entirely human attributes.4 *Also cited in this volume as “Death in Sinan’s Monastery. which in some cataclysm burst into pieces). na izlazu kao i na ulazu ovoga sveta. as has been pointed out by Dragan JeremiŒ and others offering these classifications. becomes mentally unbalanced and ends up with a distorted view of reality. This evil surfaces in AndriŒ’s characters as suffering. after experiencing a trauma. An exploration into the ways in which male and female characters interact and affect each other will also reflect the major themes as well as the poetics of AndriŒ’s works. AndriŒ describes woman: ulomak jednog ljepšeg neba koje je sjalo nad sreŒnijim stvorovima no što smo mi i za neke strahovite kataklizme prslo u parŒad. (I forgot that woman.2 A more fruitful approach than such a classification of types is to explore the dynamics of male-female relationships in AndriŒ’s stories.”* expresses this just before his death: Zaboravio sam da §ena stoji. and even up to seven different types. kao kapija. However. violence. which both men and women experience in everyday life.)3 In his first published work. The characters exhibit a broad spectrum of human emotions. Ex Ponto (1918). always stirring a powerful reaction in men. and isolation. with evil tipping the balance. fear. character types often overlap.” . Many characters in AndriŒ’s prose are subject to some obsessive behavior.
(I forgot myself and broke the silence. In other words.)5 He wakes up before dawn and waits for her. koji svoj dan i svoju noŒ. Only once does the narrator dare address the apparition: Zaboravio sam se i prekinuo za sekund Œutanje. who is virtual reality. things exist and do not exist at the same time. happier than all the men in the world who share their days and nights. In the mind of AndriŒ’s male characters. with a real woman. for AndriŒ. svoj hleb i svoj log dele sa avetima. Jelena’s appearance takes different forms. She appears to the first-person narrator suddenly and without any warning. For them. ears. a feeling more intense than eyes. a perfect and beautiful creature.)6 Thus the female is portrayed as a platonic idea. tek toliko da joj sa pola reœi ka§em kako sam neizmerno sreŒniji od svih ljudi na zemlji.156 Radmila Gorup Men. The moment of reality becomes blurred and spills over its bounds when man realizes that life is not exhausted in the visible and concrete. a ne kao ja. sa istinskom §enom savršenog bica i lika. (For hours I exist conscious of her presence. the Woman Who Is Not. His longing is real and powerful. no longer a young man. or all that the inadequate senses could provide. for a second. are constantly striving to collect and put these pieces together. to tell her how immensely happy I was.” woman is a metaphor for happiness. When the narrator. and even though he cannot see her. like I. something beautiful that gives meaning to man’s life. Perceiving reality in dreams is a standard procedure for AndriŒ’s characters. their bed and bread with apparitions and not. She appears most frequently from April until November and is usually associated with sunlight. perceived by the narrator in a dream-like or hallucinatory state. he feels her presence intensely: A ja satima §ivim u svesti o njenom prisustvu što je mnogo više od svega što mogu da daju oŒi i usi i sva sirota cula. the woman. doubts that . but with such intensity of feeling that she becomes more tangible for him than any reality. In “Jelena. woman is often an idea. is the only reality.
Zaim in The Devil’s Yard. they completely lose sense of themselves and their reality. Da. (Now it is spring again. there is not and there has never been anything clear and certain and yet at the same time. however. nothing has been lost or become out of question. every time to an ideal woman who made his life full and happy. When AndriŒ’s characters catch sight of a beautiful woman. the Woman Who Is Not. could appear any time. nepovratno i potpuno. §ena koje nema. He wants his dreams to last and he abandons himself to the beauty of the spring: Opet proleŒe. he nevertheless wants the feeling of expectation to persist. reflections of the sunlight on the metal and water. I feel rich. shutting out the reality of his prison life. the woman who is not. AndriŒ’s female characters are not only products of dreams. I know that in this world. this force guides them and often destroys them. Znam da se svuda i svagda mo§e javiti Jelena. jasnog i sigurnog. sunœanih odblesaka na metalu ili vodi. I only wish not to stop expecting her. i mogu da œekam. . live creatures. . With their . True.)7 Other male characters dream about woman along similar lines as the narrator of “Jelena. I know that Jelena. niœeg nije bilo i niœeg nema. . at peace and capable of waiting. But even as full-blooded. rich or poor. Although there is not a single female character in the story. there are many half-open windows at which the spring breeze taps. Whether they are young or old. monks or ruffians. the imaginary story of his marriages. often fully aware of the power they hold over men. They are also women of flesh and blood. Znam da u svetu ima mnogo napola otvorenih prozora u koje kuca proleŒni vetriŒ. .” The narrator in “The Ivory Woman” literally dreams that the ivory figurine he purchased from a Chinese merchant is transformed into a woman. Bogat sam i miran. constantly changes his story while he is retelling. Samo da ne prestanem da je išœekujem.Women in AndriŒ's Writing 157 Jelena will manifest herself to his dull senses. ali ništa nije ni izgubljeno ili iskljuœeno. most of the prisoners in The Devil’s Yard dream about women who thus become a strong presence and a virtual reality in the story. over and over again. Woman is experienced by AndriŒ’s male characters as an uncontrollable force which takes over their destinies. completely and irretrievably either. any place. . . they often remain unattainable.
)9 At that same moment. a flood had temporarily obstructed the crossing over the Drina. He went into rapture and he became ridiculous. becoming ridiculous and pathetic in their effort. naravno. . the object of his desire is the playful gypsy woman Zemka. He felt something akin to pain at all that softness and beauty so close at hand.158 Radmila Gorup hands outstretched. da je vidi. A motley group of travelers had to interrupt their journey and lodge in the old khan. When he realizes that it was all a practical joke. Djerzelez dismally fails to reach his goal. da je ima. (He felt a savage and fierce desire for the infidel girl—to see her. presenting a very different picture from the one people have of an epic hero. the legendary hero of Muslim heroic ballads. “about whose beauty songs were sung all over Bosnia. . he is seen to be short and ungainly. In each of these instances. Once he dismounts from his horse. arrives at the khan with his splendid retinue. “The Journey of Alija Djerzelez. Bol mu je zadavala ta nje§nost i ljepota u njegovoj blizini. Bijesno i neodoljivo za§ele kaurkinju. . he catches a glimpse of the Venetian woman. Trying to reach her. Djerzelez literally falls into a ravine. da zna na œemu je ili inaœe da pobije i polomi sve oko sebe. The desire for this woman turns into an overriding passion: Djerzelez je planuo. “dahnuŒi vas znojem i muškom snagom” (sweating profusely and exuding male force). Alija Djerzelez. Djerzelez se zanio i. postao smiješan. . or else to smash and break everything around him.” is spirited away by her parents and hidden.)8 Noticing this. In it. the other travelers start to make fun of him. Djerzelez accepts a wager to win the beautiful foreigner with his prowess. whose sight elicits from him a groan and leaves him in an affect. Djerzelez reveals his obsessive nature when he catches sight of an anonymous beautiful woman from Venice. In the second episode. . AndriŒ developed this theme in his first Bosnian story. they grope toward the object of their desire.10 In the other two episodes of the trilogy. to settle this thing once and for all. possess her.” which he wrote in 1918. In the third. Soon afterwards. . (He seemed to take fire. the young girl Katinka. .
(Salko forgot the world utterly. Salko je zaboravljao potpuno svet i gubio oseŒanje o vremenu. i srazmerama svoga rodjenog tela. i svako razumevanje za stvarnost koja rastavlja ljude jedne od drugih. he sees his inner ego. ñorkan loses himself in dreams in which he idealizes this stranger. I ta ogromna razlika izmedju ta dva ñorkana to je njegov bol. ñorkan possesses an inner existence. a circus tightrope dancer. A bastard son of a local gypsy and an Austrian soldier.)11 Djerzelez never doubts that just wishing for these women gives him the right to posssess them. independent of an outward life filled with pain and humiliation. ñorkan becomes enthralled with a German girl. While he observed the daughter of the Austrian consul.)13 . ñorkan is another of AndriŒ’s colorful heroes who experiences rapture before the beauty of a woman. zaljubljen. (Whenever enamoured ñorkan gets drunk. the young barber apprentice in Bosnian Chronicle. lost all sense of time. After each failed attempt he feels wrath and misery. And the huge gap between the two ñorkans produces an unbearable pain. as well as all understanding of the reality that separated people one from another. što svaki dan igra i tambura nasred œaršije za veselje i zabavu duŒand§ija. mestu. on.Women in AndriŒ's Writing 159 On izgubi u tili œas svaki raœun o vremenu i istinskim odnosima.” but he also sees that other ñorkan who digs ditches and graves and buries all that dies in the town. (He loses all sense of time and proportion. and the existence of his own body. Djerzelez lives in the world of illusion. Salko. who every day dances and plays his tamburitza in the middle of town to cheer and entertain town merchants. which he endures as everyone’s errand boy in the marketplace: ¡im se napije. vidi sebe “u srcu” i “kakav jest.)12 Many other male characters experience woman in the same way as the simple ñorkan—for example. Like AndriŒ’s other characters who yearn for the impossible. Like Djerzelez.” i onog drugog ñorkana što kopa kanale i grobove i sahranjuje sve što ugine u varoši. “the way he is.
His well-ordered world of custom and dogma collapses. to pupils who never dared to look a woman straight in the face. so different from their everyday existence. In her presence. sjala je kao da je od svetlosne materije i zasenjivala zenice koje se nisu usudjivale da pravo gledaju u §enino lice. they are all passionate admirers of woman’s beauty. the wife of the Austrian consul]. the young monk shivered as if in fever. Uska. (The young monk gazed at her [Anna Maria. From the tragicomical hero Djerzelez to the poor old Matija. the dervish Alidede. In “Mila and Prelac.” at the moment of his death. Monks experience women as an unsettling influence. who never experienced carnal pleasure. Woman for these men represents a higher idea of beauty. . They love and feel elation and believe that they were made for a better world than the one in which they live.160 Radmila Gorup He is punished by his master. nearsighted man given to daydreaming: A mladi fratar je gledao u nju kao u prividjenje. a frail. and harmony.” the young boy finds contentment and happiness in the presence of his young and proud aunt and has difficulty understanding her feelings for the vagabond stranger. it was blinding stuff. feels a restlessness never known before. The narrow band of white lace around her neck . shone as if it were made of light itself. When Fra Marko is asked to thrash a Christian girl who insists on converting to Islam in order to marry her lover. This immediately causes uneasiness and doubt in him. as if she were a marvelous and unexpected vision. Entangled in a net of dreams and illusions. U njenom prisustvu kapelan je ceptio kao u groznici. suviše lepo i veliko da bi mogao bez bola da mu se raduje. The last things the dervish recalls be- . they strive to fulfill a longing that is tearing them apart. . Another young monk appears in Bosnian Chronicle. neoœekivano i divno. but he is unable to control his dreams. . he accidentally touches and feels her breasts. . almost as an evil. too exalted and dazzling to be experienced without some pain. and he is no longer able to act. In “Woman on the Rock. grace.” the old hired hand Matija is dazzled by the beauty of a young girl. bela œipka oko vrata .)14 In “Death in Sinan’s Tekke.
both involving women. In AndriŒ’s poetic universe. That is why woman appears to hold the central position in AndriŒ’s fiction. it remains without substance. vaša sjena le§i na uspavanoj §elji asketa i besanoj §udnji razvratnika. which dazzles and destroys us. (It kept breaking into the surface like an underground stream. sensual love plays the most important role in men’s lives. It is a powerful force which is in and around us. . nesluŒeno i neoœekivano i nastojeŒi da uhvati sve više maha i zavlada što veŒim brojem ljudskih biŒa oba pola. and values: Javljala se.)15 In addition to experiencing women as esoteric creatures. daughters. This ultimately means that his life is an existential failure because despite his life of learning and teaching. An important attribute of all female characters in AndriŒ’s writing is their intense suffering. testing its power on an ever greater number of human beings of both sexes. and husbands. the fate of AndriŒ’s heroines is predestined by the time and circumstances in which they live and which presuppose women’s suffering. wives. It arises in places where it does not have any perspective. Tako je iskrsavala i tamo gde joj nije bilo mesta i gde se. zbog otpora na koji je morala naiŒi. he fails to act. They are viewed as objects or possessions to be used and abused. nije nikako mogla odr§ati.Women in AndriŒ's Writing 161 fore he dies are two seemingly unimportant incidents of his life. physically and mentally. kao podzemna voda. nationalities. and lovers. These two experiences sum up his life. . AndriŒ also portrays them as mothers. your shadow falls over the dormant desire of ascetics and the sleepless longing of libertines. between people of different religions. In AndriŒ’s poetic universe love does not have any rational foundation. out of reach for the men who pursue them. And so it erupted . their families. On both occasions when he encounters women. (Women. Alidede is afraid of women. Hopeless or unhappy love is a theme which recurs in AndriŒ’s works. They are victims of society. unbidden and unsuspected . In everyday life. All men in AndriŒ’s stories have to consider their relationship with women at some point: ¬ene.
it could not possibly maintain its hold. These are not. because of the resistence it was bound to meet. or prolonged dying. boldly and without flinching. rapture.)16 Love causes a powerful and short elation. the idea of beauty. She is determined to convert to Islam in spite of threats by her family and the clergy. detailed descriptions. Everything happens in a flash.162 Radmila Gorup even in places where there was no room for it and where. Whereas male characters stricken with infatuation or love seek solace in drink and easy women. it brings disillusionment. The pasha is not disappointed: . A ona je svaki put dizala oœne kapke i svojim svijetlim. The physical beauty of woman causes pleasure. women follow their hearts blindly and are ready to die for love. but then like a disease without cure. on the eyes of the blustering yet at heart goodnatured Fra Peter.” Veli Pasha becomes infatuated with Mara when he glances through the window of a bakery and first sees just an outstretched arm and then the childish face and the merry eyes of young Mara GrgiŒ. the artist. Fata in The Bridge on the Drina. mladim pogledom gledala netremice i smjelo dobriœinu Fra Petra u oœi. They make up many successful portraits of beautiful women. Rifka in “Love in the Casbah” chooses to die when she can no longer meet with Ledenik. captures the particular feature a girl possesses when a man first gets a glimpse of her and she becomes his obsession. The young Christian girl in “By the Brandy Still” falls in love with a local Turk. In “The Pasha’s Concubine. In the face of beauty all fades. death. in art as well as in nature. Beauty fills life with happiness. unhappy with her father’s choice of husband. She thus fulfills both her father’s promise to give her in marriage and a promise to herself not to live with a man she does not love. but rather broad outlines that provoke a feeling rather than a visual image. (She raised her lids and fixed her bright young gaze. however. jumps from the bridge right after the wedding ceremony. is always present as a counterpoint to the presence of desire. elation. AndriŒ’s beautiful women vary in age and origin. Even when Fra Peter is summoned to try to change her mind. AndriŒ.)17 In AndriŒ’s prose. pain.
her eyes acquired a purple hue. her breasts.)19 Anika. of “Anika’s Times. light down. unlike the beauty of art and other manmade objects. Woman in “Woman on the Rock” is a metaphor of that finality. koje su se polagano kretale. koje su samo na suncu mogle da se vide. sve na njoj trepti. kosa. She is described as an opera singer. Rifka in “Love in the Casbah. cannot pass the marketplace without being noticed: Ma kako udešavala hod. other women in AndriŒ’s stories are often portrayed in one sentence. Her hair was quite fair. kao maškom. Both her face and her arms were covered with a fine. heavy and thick. her skin whiter and her moves slower and more natural. koju samo mladost daje” (without the radiance and freshness that only youth can give).” who wreaks havoc in the town and ruins men and families. . which moved languidly. I lice i ruke su joj bili obrasli. . ko§a postajaše belja. ugašena porculanskog sjaja. (The expression of her eyes became freer. (However she tried to adjust her walk. shakes: her dress.) 18 While the description of Mara is quite extensive. . (She was not quite sixteen. sitnim svijetlim maljama. tešku i tvrdu kosu. the beauty of AndriŒ’s women is transient. is also very briefly described. grudi. carries a germ of tragedy. that was noticeable only in sunlight. . She had big eyes of a dovelike shade and muted porcelain luster.” also not yet sixteen.21 For AndriŒ. Imala je velike oœi golubinje boje. pokreti sporiji i prirodniji. a middle-aged woman “bez sjaja i sve§ine. . The reader is just told that one spring she showed herself to the townsfolk.Women in AndriŒ's Writing 163 Bilo joj je nepunih šesnaest godina. Imala je sasvim svijetlu. igra i drhti: haljina. and because of that. all trembles. woman possesses an almost metaphysical quality that transcends the physical and psychological of the pheno- . completely transformed from an ugly duckling into a beautiful young woman: Pogled joj se oslobodi.) 20 However. . tamne oœi dobiše ljubiœast ton. quivers. her hair.
. drhti a zjenice joj zapadaju. .])23 AndriŒ’s women are also seen as part of the world of plants: Njemu je ona izgledala kao deo toga bogatog vegetalnog sveta. studied the bark of trees. her pupils contracting. . AndriŒ often likens her behavior to that of animals.)22 The daughter of the Austrian consul is depicted as a playful young animal: A djevojka je. hopped from one side of the path to the other then paused.” “a branch of a fruit tree. In describing a woman’s appearance. preskakala s jednog kraja puteljka na drugi.164 Radmila Gorup menological world. . become associated in his mind with flowers and fruits. pritjerana uz liticu.” young Mara behaves like an animal in danger: Pokatkad mu se œinila kao zvjerka koja. zagledala koru po drveŒu. . . ne znajuŒi više kud bi sa svojim telom. . obilazila cveŒe. [Much as young animals pause in the middle of their play. . and that trick of hanging her head like a flower nodding in the wind. woman is closer to nature and the primordial forces of existence. nasmejana i stidljiva. not knowing what to do with their bodies. .” and “a sapling.)24 To him she is also “pliant as a reed. indeed. In “The Pasha’s Concubine. With that rosy skin and bashful smile of hers. She is able to communicate with nature and discover its secrets. she did. uverena da je potpuno sama.” In “Byron in Sintra” AndriŒ wrote: . pullulating world of plants and animals and trees. Onako rumena. walked among the flowers. She is incorporated into the rhythm of nature. (Tako i mlade §ivotinje zastaju u igri. (At times she appeared to him [the pasha] like a young animal which. ona je zaista u njegovim mislima bila vezana za cveŒe i voŒe. quivers in her whole body. ([Jelka from Dolac] appeared to him [the young French consul] as an aspect—a distinct flesh-and-blood aspect—of that rich. which includes the cycle of birth and death. . . . Whereas man is more in touch with manmade objects.) (The girl believing herself quite alone. driven to the edge of a precipice. obarajuŒi svaki œas glavu kao cvet krunicu.
Mara in “The Pasha’s Concubine” reflects the tragedy of women’s existence in Bosnia. and rather than follow what society dictates. Mara feels completely cut off from other people and from her faith. . govore i §ive bojama. her self-accusations. . they follow their instincts. women bear losses somewhat more easily than men. perhaps the only institution which could have provided some comfort to the innocent victim. Even though she was placed in the position of a concubine through no fault of her own. On the contrary. Beautiful women in AndriŒ do not profit much from their beauty. Like plants. this quality carries the germ of their tragedy. which otherwise wouldn’t know how to see them. . They have something from the world of vegetation and minerals. . koje inaœe ne bi umele da ih vide. Mara is left behind at the mercy of her countrymen.) 26 Because they are more in tune with nature. Her mortification. where she continues to live a life of shame and humiliation and where she becomes the potential victim of further abuse. one ih samo otkrivaju našim oœima. Whether the woman gives in to the advances of her pursuer or not. ([The woman on the rock] is one of those women in whom the feeling for color and chromatic harmony is highly developed. she is doomed. the local folk cannot forgive her. kao urodjeno. . She submits to her fate and suffers her humiliation in silence. The church itself. She is placed in the house of a rich Sarajevo family.Women in AndriŒ's Writing 165 Ništa nema uzbudljivije od usana ovih portugalskih §ena! One imaju nešto i od vegetalnog i od mineralnog sveta. they are more composed in the face of danger. and the feeling of shame intensify progressively to a high . . When the pasha has to leave Bosnia. rejects her. One. Veli Pasha sees the innocent sixteenyear-old Mara and arranges to have her as his concubine. they live and they talk in colors. as if inborn.) 25 Women’s closeness to nature is also revealed in the manner they feel colors: To su te §ene koje imaju u najveŒoj meri razvijeno. U stvari. oseŒanje za boje i sklad boja. (There is nothing more exciting than the lips of the women of Portugal. kao biljke. Actually all they do is to uncover them to our eyes.
female characters in AndriŒ’s stories lead an existence full of suffering. he soon starts to torment her regularly with his grand ideas and his pretensions. In “In the Camp. The young woman in “Olujaci” is married and brought from Mostar to a remote village with very crude inhabitants. a young but poor girl. enslaved. he locks her in the house while her brother is visiting and burns them and the house down. she becomes just the crown of his worldly possessions.” a girl from Trebinje who was kidnapped is rescued and is kept in the house of the local judge. They live without love or understanding and most suffer in silence.166 Radmila Gorup pitch. unlike Mara and other generally very submissive characters. However. Once married. Without paying any attention to her needs. Such a character is Anica in “Tormenting.” suffers in her loveless marriage and is subjected to her husband’s physical and mental abuse and his family’s contempt. They are forced to live locked in their houses. a successful merchant. The institution of marriage provides an environment in which AndriŒ had plenty of opportunity to explore the theme of oppression. Her hallucinations of the terror of damnation are so strong that she loses her mind. Her husband keeps her isolated and torments her with his jealousy. to which he forces her to listen day in and day out. In a jealous rage. When Andrija. marries her. The poor woman. the local people are completely amazed. traumatized by her experience. While not limited to them. Scenes of rape and masochistic behavior are striking and powerful. the townsfolk are sure that she has made an excellent match. Another theme which recurs in AndriŒ is that of violence against women. her hands pressed between her knees. The judge waits for the pasha to send his men to escort . this is particularly true of the characters in AndriŒ’s Bosnian stories because of the historical conditions under which Bosnian women lived. Other women are depicted as martyrs of a different kind. However. complains to her mother. Unlike other characters who are physically abused. Anica suffers largely from verbal abuse. either to satisfy their husbands’ physical desires or simply to be objects of possession. a poor Christian girl married to a rich merchant in “The Pasha’s Concubine. When she leaves him.” which takes place in modern times. and even physically defends herself when her husband beats her. Nevenka Pamukovic. Nevenka remains defiant. loses her ability to speak and sits in the corner of the room.
)29 The commander instructs the soldiers to cover the woman with a blanket and then orders them to move. under which her torn pantaloons can be seen. The pasha knows that Mullah Yusuf has abused and even killed women and he does not particularly like him. malena. with foam on her lips. attacks the poor creature: A djevojka je stajala kao izvan sebe i puštala sve tupim. (Her shirt was pulled back over her head. seemed of a piece with the sharp. teškim mirom koji bludniku vraŒaše svijest i izazivaše §elju da slast produ§i i pooštri. to draw forth some protest and movement. but he finds him useful. the unit can hear the woman screaming and cursing them and see her standing at the doorstep. gubilo se medju oštrim sivim stijenama na suncu. he realizes what has happened: Na zemlji je le§alo jadno. . near-white rocks basking in the sun.Women in AndriŒ's Writing 167 the girl. and bending like a scarecrow in the wind. da izazove otpor i pokret. squashed and lifeless. Nad njim su zujale muhe. soldiers find a young gypsy girl and gang rape her. Košulja joj je bila prebaœena preko glave.)27 He then attacks the girl with a razor blade and mutilates her. Above it the flies were buzzing. Dimije i košulja na njoj bili su pocepani. Her clothes were all torn apart. izgubljena i zga§ena. When the commander finds the unit. The young granddaughter of baba Anusha in “The Pasha’s Concubine” is violated. Mullah Yusuf. resembling a small object. She does not defend herself. (On the ground lay the thin body of the woman quivering weakly. and her child’s body. Mullah Yusuf is entrusted with that mission. When people find the child. who apparently enjoys inflicting pain. sa penom na usnama. dull apathy that brought the old lecher back to his senses and spurred a desire to prolong and sharpen the thrill. a djetinje tijelo kao neka stvar. (The girl stood there absently and permitted everything with an air of grave. Before they reach a certain distance.)28 In Omer Pasha Latas. mršavo §enino telo u slabim trzajima. covered with a blanket.
destroying their husbands’ individuality. there are female characters in AndriŒ’s stories who are shrews. the wife of the French consul in Bosnian Chronicle. she survives to become his favorite. Kata Bademic in “The Miracle at Olovo.” gives birth to many children.” the Syrian woman whose family was slaughtered by ñelebi Hafiz revenges her family’s death. who pay for the sins of their fathers. and she teaches the local Bosnian girls how to improve their surroundings. When the opportunity arises. evil pursues women and punishes them through their children. She gives birth. however. a feeble daughter. she mutilates his body and burns his face and eyes. Less frequently women in AndriŒ’s stories are in their traditional benevolent roles of wives and mothers who are honest and hard-working. she works in the house.” and to some extent Agata in “The Bar Titanic. She seems at ease with her life. While she pretends to be loyal to him. Krstinica in “Anika’s Times” kills her husband savagely with the help of her young lover. she raises children. Such is Kobra in “Zeko.” Natalija in “Family Portrait. Being the only person on whom the tyrant took pity. she waits for an opportunity to pay him back in the most terrible way.168 Radmila Gorup Even when they are no longer young and beautiful. to a spa known for miraculous cures. . but they all die. In “Torso. leaving only a torso. and she suffers in silence when she has to bury her baby. Good women like Madame Daville were perhaps not challenging enough for AndriŒ. He seems to prefer as subjects women who suffer through the acts of society. She watches in terror as the imbecile smile of her husband appears on her daughter’s face.” A woman can be the instrument of man’s downfall. The old lady does not want to profit from other people’s misfortunes. women who choose to live without men. He dedicates much more space to women characters who somehow depart from their traditional roles. Madame Daville strives to create a warm and comfortable atmosphere around herself and her family. or women rebels who try to avenge themselves on men. She brings her last remaining child. Good and unselfish. They rule their husbands and households. They are cruel by nature. like Andja in “The Rug” or Madame Daville. Andja orders her son to throw away a rug he bought from an Austrian soldier who most probably took it as booty. While the wife is usually the oppressed party.
and to keep a distance from her clients in the bar. An evil of this kind in AndriŒ’s works can be removed only by death. who is so preoccupied with herself. The only path that she finds open to her is in her romantic fantasies. She harbors in her character the yet unidentified revolt of a feminist. using her body as an instrument of choice.” as AndriŒ describes her. Every attempt to find a way out ends in just another failure for Anna Maria. Anika realizes her power over men early in life. They work in generally male professions and they earn money. waging war on the entire society. She destroys individuals and families and causes fights and hatred among people of the town. while she is at the same time oversensitive to the plight of animals. The reader does not have too much sympathy for this woman. To the townspeople. lustful and aggressive men. She seduces men of the town and then rejects them. When the man she loves proves incapable of wooing her. the manager of a new hotel built near the bridge in The Bridge on the Drina. Some of AndriŒ’s female protagonists in more modern settings lead lives outside marriage. Yet Anna Maria is a rebel of a kind and therefore of more interest to AndriŒ as a character. Anika’s sexual prowess violates the moral order and disturbs society. but the moment a man expresses an interest in a physical relationship. One example is Lotika. she is trying to raise herself above the ordinary. which sends her into deep depression. eccentric woman who does not seem to care much for her husband or daughter. Lotika is able to control the town’s drunks. A beautiful woman. and this causes embarrassment for her husband. she meddles in the affairs of the church. Basically an unhappy woman. unhappy with her lot and the role society has imposed on her. the wife of the Austrian consul. An Austrian Jew. A tireless worker. than to the model wife and mother Madame Daville. The town is liberated from Anika and she herself finds peace only when her brother kills her. she realizes that she is trapped again. Lotika is a beautiful woman with “the heart of a man.” She is a renegade. She flirts with men. A rebel of an entirely different kind is Anika of “Anika’s Times. Anna Maria is depicted as an exalted. Anika is the personification of evil. Anika starts to sell her favors.Women in AndriŒ's Writing 169 AndriŒ gives more space in Bosnian Chronicle to Anna Maria. She is able to find the right words for each of her . she is looking for something that will give more contentment to her life. She gets involved in other people’s problems.
In conclusion. Rajka quickly sobers up to continue her frenzied activities of saving and “enduring. Rajka Radakovic. and she ruins the last years of her mother’s life. As her business prospers. The only real pleasure she finds is in mending and saving. Rajka is the female Shylock of AndriŒ’s novel. Embittered by his financial failure. the novel is the story of a human obsession par excellence. An unselfish woman. She moves with her mother to Belgrade. Perhaps the most unorthodox role a female character can play in a largely male-oriented society is portrayed by the protagonist of The Woman from Sarajevo (Gospodjica). both hidden and exposed. Following this advice. where her obsession undergoes a qualitative change. Rajka gradually becomes a compulsive miser. when out of affection she lends money to a young man who reminds her of her beloved uncle. Rajka no longer strives to acquire more money but does everything in her power to save the money she has and to protect all she owns against natural decay.170 Radmila Gorup guests. Rajka’s financial practices during World War I are so ruthless that she feels obliged to leave Sarajevo. and she shows no compassion for distressed clients. which he sees not as the consequence of historical conditions but as something which exists in women and men. The character of Rajka dominates the novel from beginning to end. and never trust anyone. Set partly in Sarajevo and partly in Belgrade. Her passion becomes an irrational force which governs her life. which she mistakes for a thief. AndriŒ reveals through his female characters a world filled with evil. Rajka cuts herself off from all the pleasures of life and becomes indifferent to worldly things. Only for a brief period does she lose control. Lotika supports both numerous distant relatives throughout Eastern Europe and the local poor. save. She neglects her house and even her health.” Rajka dies in her dilapidated house from a heart attack when she is frightened by the shadow of a coatrack. After that. AndriŒ’s prose depicts not only and not primarily the historical and social background in which his female . Rajka’s father prepares his daughter to be a successful businesswoman by advising her to economize. Yet her personal life stays in the background and appears empty and without love. She lends money at high interest rates. Her selfdenial has the zeal of religious devotion. which is without parallel in world literature.
“Zena i ljubav u delu Ive AndriŒa. 12. pp. p. p. The Pasha’s Concubine. p. Jeremic. vol. Ex Ponto. 11.B. vol. Ivo AndriŒ. 17. Pripovetke. p. translation by Hitrec. Translated by Joseph Hitrec in The Pasha’s Concubine and Other Tales by Ivo AndriŒ (New York: Alfred A. translation by Hitrec. p. p. The author compensated for women’s reduced social status by endowing their lives with poetic meaning. p. Sabrana dela. 2. p. 18. AndriŒ. 41. Sabrana dela. AndriŒ. vol. 39. 186. 18. translation by Hitrec. 52. Pripovetke.” Review of National Literatures 5. AndriŒ. Dragan M. 2d ed. 16. p. (Belgrade: Prosveta.. 13. translation by Hitrec. 22. translation by Hitrec. 2. Sabrana dela. p. p. 1968). which is the driving force in society. 124. The Pasha’s Concubine. 15. The Pasha’s Concubine. 8. Pripovetke. 205–6. AndriŒ. 3. Sabrana dela.” Savremenik 9. p. All translations are mine unless otherwise indicated. It also deals with their inner lives. p. Ibid. p. 7. Knopf. John Loud. 14. Ivo AndriŒ. translation by Hitrec. Ex Ponto (Belgrade: Izdanje S. 9. 183. 10. AndriŒ. Bosnian Chronicle. 7. translation by Hitrec. 2. p. Cvijanovica. The Pasha’s Concubine. 103. 5. AndriŒ.Women in AndriŒ's Writing 171 characters are shaped. In his poetic universe woman is primarily the object of desire. p. 326–27. Ibid. 174. 1985). 43. Sabrana dela. 263. 188. 35. p.. Sabrana dela. p. p. 22. Ivo AndriŒ. . 42. 1954). 1920). 275. 44. vol. p. they have an important position in his opus. Pripovetke (Belgrade: Nolit. 4.. mostly unattainable and elusive but of incredible force. 1963): 327–36. The Pasha’s Concubine. 103. vol. 1965). Pripovetke. While women hold a peripheral position in the society AndriŒ depicts in his works. l (1974): 113. p. 7. AndriŒ. 68. Ivo AndriŒ. Bosnian Chronicle. 171. 51. “Between Two Worlds: AndriŒ the Storyteller. 293. p. 3d ed. 175. 6. 18 (Belgrade. p. AndriŒ. NOTES 1. vol. AndriŒ. Knopf. 1963). Translated by Joseph Hitrec in Bosnian Chronicle by Ivo AndriŒ (New York: Alfred A. 7. AndriŒ. p. Odabrane pripovetke (Belgrade: Srpska knji§evna zadruga XLVIII.
24. Sabrana dela. p. 7. 179. vol. p. 256. Sabrana dela. 220. 7. 21. p. vol. AndriŒ. vol. Sabrana dela. p. AndriŒ. translation by Hitrec. 21. vol. 233. 192. in Knji§evnost (Belgrade. 104. 219. 30. 26. AndriŒ. Sabrana dela. 28. AndriŒ. 59. 7. The Pasha’s Concubine. 125. 7. p. p. AndriŒ. vol. Omer Pasha Latas. AndriŒ. p. 27. p. p.172 Radmila Gorup 19. 170. p. vol. p. The Pasha’s Concubine. Pripovetke. vol. translation by Hitrec. 137. 5–6. 2. 1963). p. p. vol. AndriŒ. AndriŒ. 7. translation by Hitrec. 2. 29. 23. AndriŒ. Sabrana dela. 5 (Zagreb: Mladost. p. Sabrana dela. p. AndriŒ. 25. Sabrana dela. translation by Hitrec. AndriŒ. p. The Pasha’s Concubine. Bosnian Chronicle. Pripovetke. translation by Hitrec. translation by Hitrec. 183. 22. vol. The Pasha’s Concubine. 1976). 117. . p. Sabrana dela. Bosnian Chronicle. 153. 20. 522.
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