Two Victorian Ladies in Bosnia, 1862-1875: G.M. MacKenzie and A.P. Irby

Petar Petrović Njegoš once told a group of English officers about a visit paid him by two English travelers in 1843. One of these was a woman. They had come to Cetinje after a hard climb through enemy ranks to see the Montenegrin ruler and poet. Asked by Njegoš what made her undertake such an arduous and perilous journey, the  []

An Immigrant’s Deal: Two Lives for the Price of One

When you become an immigrant, you have lost or are in the process of losing much: you loseWeight Exercise your country, your language, your culture, your friends. But you also gain much: a new country, new knowledge, new experience, and perhaps new friends. The tension between the loss and the gain—or the debit and the credit side of your life’s  []

Uncle Radovan

(This text is a slightly modified version of an article written toward the end of the war in Bosnia and first published in the Boston daily The Christian Science Monitor, July 19, 1995) Radovan Karadžić is a Montenegrin who claims he is a Serb, a psychiatrist who tries to be a poet, and a war criminal who insists that he  []

Bosnian Towns At The End of the Nineteenth Century

Journalist and historian William Miller (1864-1945) was educated at Rugby and Oxford, after which he devoted himself to the study of Turkish and Balkan society and politics. His book Travels and Politics in the Near East (1898) was, as he points out in the “Preface,” “the result of four visits to the Balkan Peninsula in the years 1894, 1896, 1897,  []

Literature Is What You Should Re-Read: An Interview With Susan Sontag

(We interviewed Susan Sontag in Sarajevo on April 10, 1993, during her first visit to the Bosnian capital under siege. We sat on plastic chairs in front of the main entrance of a building whose overarching mass gave us some sense of security from the Serb gunners on the mountain beyond. But it was an unusually quiet spell in the  []