Revista "9 Mai - Ziua Europei" Nr. 8 / 2018

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Drd. Albert Gjoka: Morphology of Albanian socialist i-realism

(A brief history of method, specifications and process that fulfilled the rules of socrealism)
The socialist realism as a creative method was imported by the Soviet Union in Albania, despite its application owned its specifications in every country of the communist east. Even though it found a preliminary ground as to penetration of communist ideas in Albania during 1930, or that there were ideological and cultural debates on surrealism, verism, futurism etc, it had begun the translation of Russian literature (The Mother novel of Maxim Gorky) as well as there were realized several difficult tests of realist literature, the socrealism established itself ferociously thanks to the collapse of the system with the coming into power of communists, given that literature was considered to be “working-class literature.” The Third Conference of the League of Writers in 1949 marked the formalization of method, which was developed as a complex filtering process, drawing a “demarcation line “with the best literature of tradition or contemporary one, Albanian or native. It took socialist realism more than 20 years to fulfill the entirety of rules imposed on artists, whose implementation was guaranteed by socrealist criticism as the guardian and other extra-literary structures that followed step by step the process of cultural production, rendering their censorship through mechanisms of pressure and terror, laying the appropriate ground for auto censorship. We have rendered these rules a morphological function, similar to morphology of fairy tale, which is why we have called this method socialist unrealism. Some Albanian writers implemented the principles of creative method, but others avoided it, either due to their artistic talent, or due to controversies of esthetic character. By means of the method, the communist system managed not only to place art under its service, therefore transforming it into propagandistic goods, but also to fulfill an Orwellian project of the annihilation of individualism, creative and spiritual freedom and manipulation of masses. As such, this project carried an extraordinary cost on creative energies even on the overwhelming part of literary creativeness, which suffered a similar fate with the political system, failing to have the reader under its thumb in later periods.    

The socialist realism continues to remain “a ruin of literary and ideological mixture” that provokes harsh controversies even nowadays 27 years after, despite there is still a need to approach objectively with multidisciplinary studies in order to understand better the relations between the government and art, artist with ideology and to analyze phenomena that appear in a society when art is subjected entirely to ideology. The written works during that period are still unstudied in inner aspects of their structure, formation, method and influence/manipulation that art inflicts on the society. Despite most of the works that have failed to have the reader under their thumb and likely no restitution of communication on them, such thing does not justify the fact that criticism and communication experts neglect or reject the study of this “propagandistic arsenal” that was generated in literature and culture during the communist system. The cultural product of socrealism was put into use by the system to develop the war of the classes.
“If one ethnic or national group can define another as nonhuman or subhuman, then culture becomes suddenly and tribally specific and exclusive. The definition itself is an act of violence and an invitation to potential if not actualized genocide. When one culture eliminates what it considers not human, it identifies itself, according to its own definition, as human. Cultural identification in such a context takes on ultimate poker”[1].