“Ismail Kadare opens the curtains to allow a light beam to enter the apartment in Tirana, where he wrote during the dark days of the communist regime. A visitor can now explore closely, as his former home has become a museum.”
Guest in the home of the well-known Albanian writer was the French AFP media, for which Kadare gave an interview.
“I worked here, near the chimney,” says the 83-year-old novelist for AFP, sitting at the place where he wrote down his thoughts. “I wrote with paper in my lap and I worked only in the morning,” adds Kadare, who wrote some of his most famous works, including the “Dream Palace”, while living in the third floor apartment of the concrete building, together with his family from 1973 to 1990. During that time, the windows were covered with dark curtains to protect their home from the paranoid eye of the communist regime led by former dictator Enver Hoxha, who isolated the country during his 40-year rule.
With wooden floors and green and white walls, the space is splattered with personal memories. The writer’s wish is that this place be a museum and not a “mausoleum”.With his wife Elena, also a writer, Kadare now shares his time between Tirana and the Latin Quarter in Paris, where he migrated in 1990 shortly before the communist regime in Albania collapsed. However, Kadare says he did not allow the dictatorship to suppress his creativity.
“Dark times bring unpleasant, but beautiful surprises. Literature has often produced stunning works in dark times, as if it wants to improve the misfortunes caused to humans. ”
Kadare says he is happy to see his name “mentioned among the candidates” for the Nobel Prize:
“I’m not modest because, in principle, I am against modesty. During the totalitarian regime, modesty was a call to submit. Writers should not submit. ”
When asked whether he was happy during the days passed in Tirana under the control of communism, Kadare says:”People who lived during that time were unhappy, but art is above everything. Art is neither happy nor unhappy, in the regime “./ Translated by AFP / Tiranapost.al.D.Xh