Goce Smilevski (Гоце Смилевски)

Goce Smilevski (born 1975), Yugoslavia; Macedonia.

Smilevski (SMEE-lef-skee) was born in Skopje, the capital and main city of Macedonia, then a republic of Socialist Yugoslavia. He studied at Saints Kiril and Metodij University in Skopje, at Charles University in Prague, and at Central European University in Budapest (at CEU he was in the Gender Studies program).

Sestrata na Zigmund Frojd was first published in 2011 and was translated into English by Christina Kramer (professor of Slavic and Balkan Languages and Linguistics at the University of Toronto). The book has been very successful; it won the EU Prize for Literature in 2010 (NB: before it was published), and was welcomed by the Anglophone press, among others, in a three-page review by Joyce Carol Oates in the New York Review of Books. That review, unfortunately, didn't mention the quality of the translation at all - but still, Joyce Carol Oates! The Author's Note at the opening of our edition gives some thought-provoking information on Smilevski's reasons for undertaking this novel. Freud's writings have been hugely influential in Western culture; they are no longer the unmediated basis for psychotherapeutic practice or the study of psychology, but they are still widely read by scholars in all kinds of fields and by amateurs as well. (His theories are often based on myths or on literary representations {he was very taken with Dostoevsky's Brothers Karamazov, for instance}, and scholars have often used him as the basis for psychoanlytic or decontructionist readings of literary works.) Among other things, Freud was a very fine writer, though that's not always visible in translations of his work, which could tend to make him sound ponderous, to use Latin words (id, ego) for words that were in German in the original (to make them sound more "mythical" and significant?).

In any case, by choosing the sister of such a well-known figure and putting that figure's name in the title, Smilevski ensured that reader would pick up the book and take a look inside.

Questions for Reading:

Other books by Smilevski:

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