The Bridge on the Drina
Ivo Andric University of Chicago Press, 1977 Library of Congress PZ3.A5735Br 1977 | Dewey Decimal 891.8235
The Bridge on the Drina is a vivid depiction of the suffering history has imposed upon the people of Bosnia from the late 16th century to the beginning of World War I. As we seek to make sense of the current nightmare in this region, this remarkable, timely book serves as a reliable guide to its people and history.
"No better introduction to the study of Balkan and Ottoman history exists, nor do I know of any work of fiction that more persuasively introduces the reader to a civilization other than our own. It is an intellectual and emotional adventure to encounter the Ottoman world through Andric's pages in its grandiose beginning and at its tottering finale. It is, in short, a marvelous work, a masterpiece, and very much sui generis. . . . Andric's sensitive portrait of social change in distant Bosnia has revelatory force."—William H. McNeill, from the introduction
"The dreadful events occurring in Sarajevo over the past several months turn my mind to a remarkable historical novel from the land we used to call Yugoslavia, Ivo Andric's The Bridge on the Drina."—John M. Mohan, Des Moines Sunday Register
Born in Bosnia, Ivo Andric (1892-1975) was a distinguished diplomat and novelist. He was awarded the Nobel Prize for Literature in 1961. His books include The Damned Yard: And Other Stories, and The Days of the Consuls.
Ivo Andric (1892-1975), Nobel Prize laureate for literature in 1961, is undoubtedly the most popular of all contemporary Yugoslav writers. Over the span of fifty-two years some 267 of his works have been published in thirty-three languages. Andric’s doctoral dissertation, The Development of Spiritual Life in Bosnia under the Influence of Turkish Rule (1924), never before translated into English, sheds important light on the author’s literary writings and must be taken into account in any current critical analysis of his work. Over his long and distinguished career as a diplomat and man of letters Andric never again so directly or discursively addressed, as a social historian, the impact of Turkish hegemony on the Bosnian people (1463–1878), a theme he returns to again and again in his novels. Although Andric’s fiction was embedded in history, scholars know very little of his actual readings in history and have no other comparable treatment of it from his own pen. This dissertation abounds with topics that Andric incorporated into his early stories and later novels, including a focus on the moral stresses and compromises within Bosnia’s four religious confessions: Catholic, Orthodox, Jew, and Muslim. Z. B. Juricic provides an extensive introduction describing the circumstances under which this work was written and situating it in Andric’s oeuvre. John F. Loud’s original bibliography drawn from this dissertation stands as the only comprehensive inventory of historical sources known to have been closely familiar to the author at this early stage in his development.