Parables of Dictatorship and the Aesthetics of Fear in the Novels of Ismail Kadare

By Bavjola Shatro.

Published by The Humanities Collection

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Article: Print $US10.00
Article: Electronic $US5.00

The aim of this article is to show how the parable of totalitarianism is created in three of
the main novels of Ismail Kadare, The Niche of Shame, The Three-Arched Bridge and The Palace of
Dreams. I shall analyze and give interpretations of three basic symbols, such as the bridge, the dream
and the cut head. I will also analyze how the atmosphere is created. I shall focus in particular on aspects
and elements that Kadare has used to artistically re-conceptualize time, space and some particular
components of Albanian history and folklore in order to create a living image of the terror of totalitarianism
and the distortion of human consciousness as the ultimate purpose and consequence of the
use of violence against man and community under dictatorship. The way Kadare creates the image of man
and nation under power forms part of the phenomenon that I call the Aesthetics of fear. These
elements will be found in novels written during the years 1960-1990, including some of Kadare’s most
important titles, such as The Palace of Dreams, The Niche of Shame and The Three-Arched Bridge.

Keywords: Novel, Parables, Allegory, Symbol, Totalitarianism, Individual, Fear

International Journal of the Humanities, Volume 9, Issue 3, pp.115-126. Article: Print (Spiral Bound). Article: Electronic (PDF File; 918.117KB).

Dr. Bavjola Shatro

Lecturer of Literature, Section of Literature and Linguistics, Department of Pedagogy, Faculty of Education, State University of Durres, Tirana, Albania

Ms. Bavjola Shatro: I follow Doctoral Studies in the International Center for Literary Science and Albanian Studies in Tirana. I followed the Master Studies for Albanian Contemporary Literature in the Department of Literature, State University of Tirana. Teaching and job experience: Since the end of my Bachelor studies, which concluded with the “Excellent Student” Medal and Award (2005), I have been a Lecturer of Albanian Literature and Comparative Literature in the State University of Durres, the head of the Literature and Linguistics Section in the Faculty of Education, and an elected member of the Council of Ethics of the University and in the Council of the Faculty of Education. I have participated in many international and national conferences on Cultural Studies, Literature, etc. My articles are published in University Journal Reviews, Literary Reviews and Periodicals in Albania, Macedonia, Italy, Kosovo, etc. I am the author and co-author of two books, one literature (Analysis and Interpretation, September 2010, Tirana) and one on culture and the history of literature (Renaissance of Europe April 2010, Tirana). I am also an Associate Editor in University Journals. My academic interests are strongly connected to literature, cultural memory, social aspects of literature, the relationship between literature and philosophy, etc.

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