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Slavenka Drakulic was born in Croatia in 1949, is a writer and journalist whose two novels and three non-fiction books have been translated into major European languages. She contributes to The New Republic, La Stampa, Dagens Nyheter, Frankfurter Runschau and the Observer.
Drakulic (How We Survived Communism and Even Laughed) notes that Eastern Europeans are so anxious to become like their Western counterparts that every city and town has a Café Europa that is a pale imitation of similar establishments in Paris and Rome. She presents here a collection of essays that explore life in various Eastern European countries since the fall of communism. As a citizen of Croatia (formerly a part of Yugoslavia) living now in Vienna with her Swedish husband, she writes knowingly as a survivor of a communist regime, as one who realizes that pitfalls still lie ahead for nations emerging from the Soviet yoke. In Albania, she observes rage everywhere in people who seem to want to smash all vestiges of the Hoxha regime. In Romania, she comments on the execrable state in which public toilets are maintained: "[T]he standard of Romanian toilets reflects the nature of the communist system of which it is a legacy"; "the absence of any improvement is... a warning for the future of democracy" there. Drakulic's pungent and insightful ruminations not only describe life in her part of the world‘she makes us feel it as well. Author tour. (Feb.)
'Slavenka Drakulic is a writer of great sensitivity, intelligence and grace.' ALICE WALKER 'A formidable writer.' SUNDAY TIMES 'Her writing has the spare poetry of Marguerite Duras.' GUARDIAN 'Slavenka Drakulic is a journalist and writer whose voice belongs to the world.' GLORIA STEINEM
More essays from the author of How We Survived Communism and Even Laughed, one of LJ's Best Books of 1992.