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By Marinković, Ranko; Stojiljković, Vlada; Elias-Bursać, Ellen

In his semiautobiographical novel, Cyclops, Croatian author Ranko Marinkovic recounts the adventures of younger theater critic Melkior Tresic, an archetypal antihero who makes a decision to starve himself to prevent struggling with within the entrance traces of global warfare II. As he wanders the streets of Zagreb in a near-hallucinatory country of paranoia and malnourishment, Melkior encounters a colourful circus of characters—fortune-tellers, shamans, actors, prostitutes, bohemians, and café intellectuals—all residing in a delicate dream of a society approximately to be replaced forever.

A seminal paintings of postwar jap eu literature, Cyclops reveals a little-known point of view on global warfare II from in the former Yugoslavia, one who hasn't ever earlier than been on hand to an English-speaking viewers. Vlada Stojiljkovic's capable translation, greater via Ellen Elias-Bursac's insightful modifying, preserves the awesome brilliance of this riotously humorous and densely allusive textual content. alongside Melkior’s trip Cyclops satirizes either the delusions of the righteous army officers who feed the nationwide bloodlust in addition to the wayward intellectuals who think themselves to be above the disagreeable realities of foreign clash. via Stojiljkovic's clear-eyed translation, Melkior’s peregrinations exhibit how historical past occurs and the way the person recognition is swept up within the tide of political occasions, and this is often entire in a method that may resonate with readers of Charles Simic, Aleksandr Hemon, and Kundera

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Oh yes, a plump one, with all-around curvaceous qualities. I knew her personally. Pulp novels were the total extent of her interest in the written word. She sat around in bars like this one here. . ’’ Maestro spat out the butt, took a sip of the local brandy, and lit a fresh cigarette, which he immediately maneuvered with his tongue to the corner of his mouth to keep his speech unimpeded. ‘‘But it seems that both artists were smitten with her curves, wherefore the performing artist trounced the pen-wielding artist.

Melkior, too, understood their wink. ’’ Viviana, here? That was why he was not going in. How many times lately had he responded to the hint by defying the malicious destiny beckoning to him. ’’ He had resisted, letting time heal . . or however it was that the saying went. But tonight it had extended its magical finger, tracing Viviana’s name in the dust . . Behind the steamy glass panels there was an orgy of laughter and, surely enough, Ugo’s voice. ‘‘They are having a good time of it,’’ he said like a miser watching others squander their fortunes, and decided to move on.

Cried the driver with desperation as if Melkior has guessed what he feared most. ’’ Coming quite close to Melkior, he said in a confidential whisper, ‘‘There are Jerry spies and fifth columnists everywhere. They’ve 17 been paddling about in rubber boats since nineteen thirty-seven, photographing the natural wonders. Tourists,’’ and he laughed with bitter irony as if he had found some relief in a shot of stiff drink. ‘‘But you’re busy,’’ he added, self-conscious, having noticed Melkior’s impatience.

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