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NOVEL “UBOJTAK” BY BOŽO BULATOVIĆ

 

 

The novel “Ubojtak” by Božo Bulatović, wich has been recently published within the new edition “Neprolazni romani” by the National Library of Montenegro “Đurđe Crnojević”, was promoted at the Library in Cetinje.

According to the poet and literary critic Jadranka Vukanović, Bulatović’s thought, inclining to Lalić-Andrić’s expressive discipline, exudes magical conviction and opens up the fateful enigmas of a Montenegrin man with its even more lyrical elements, extending his soul and thought, history and behest, faith and cursedness to the glossaries which both spiritually and morally made him who he is.

“And what is he like? His image was created and fitted in 370 pages of the book. Not a small number of pages, because those are magnificently sculptured portraits, or great number, because with their own science they have provided us much more than it could be reached through the given number of pages. What is happening within them is not just a matter of aesthetics, but also of ethics, survival and science”, said Vukanović and added that Božo Bulatović as a creator knew well and understood the long ago expressed thought:” Show me the culture of a nation, and a novel is a part of art and culture, and you’ve showed me its history”.

The etymology of the term “ubojtak”, according to literary critic Ksenija Rakočević, is very complex.

“We could now divide it and observe it as a compound or a semi-compound, in its root are words “to kill” (Montenegrin “ubiti”), but also “to be strong” (“biti jak”), so “ubojtak” was created by combining these terms. “Ubojtak” is related to stone, and in the language of the symbol the stone is very important for understanding this text. It represents divine firmness, strength, and survival. Survival and precisely this strength are leitmotivs of the novel”, Rakočević said.

She also explained that one of the most important elements for understanding the text is mythology.

“If you look at the Montenegrin culture, you will see that it is quite inclined to mythology and the creation of myths, and such is every culture. Each culture has its own system of signs, its mythologies, which clearly send us signs according to which we need to behave and which will bring us good or evil.

So, magic functions, healing functions, help in wars – everything is attributed to “ubojtak” and it is very important to look back to war especially, because the entire Montenegrin literature, in accordance with its history, is full of wars”, concluded Rakočević.

Within the mentioned event, librarian of the National Library “Đurđe Crnojević”, Dragana Kaluđerović also read a few excerpts from this novel.

Božo Bulatović was born in Mojkovac on January 6, 1927. He graduated from the Faculty of Philosophy in Belgrade in 1952. He was a high school professor in Berane and Cetinje. He was editor of the magazines “Susreti”, “Razvitak”, “Godišnjak Ivangradske gimnazije”, a member of the editorial boards of “Borac”, “Pobjeda”, “Borba”, “Svet”, “Razvitak”, and he was often present in “Politika” and “Književne novine”.

In separate units he published: novels: “Karaula” and “Ubojtak”, literary critics: “Mihailo Lalić”, “Oton Župančić”, “Skender Kulenović”, “Jovan Dučić”, “Stvari stoje drukčije”, “BB Šaranović – Tihi gromoglasnik”, and “Rubrike”, travelogue reportages: “Hod u svjetlost”, “Hronike”, “Staze”, “Putevi koji pišu”, as well as stories: “Priče iz nepovrata” and “Zapisi o bezimenom”.

He was a member of Matica Crnogorska, Montenegrin Association of Independent Writers and Montenegrin PEN Center. He died in Podgorica on August 12, 2009.