September 24, 2023

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Iranian bookstores host ‘The Museum of Unconditional Surrender’

TEHRAN – A Persian translation of the renowned Yugoslavian writer Dubravka Ugresic’s “The Museum of Unconditional Surrender” has recently appeared in Iranian bookstores.

Nashrenow Publications released the Persian translation of the book by Azar Aalipour.

Written in a variety of literary forms, “The Museum of Unconditional Surrender” captures the shattered world of a life in exile. Some chapters re-create the daily journal of the narrator’s lonely and alienated mother, who shops at the improvised flea-markets in town and longs for her children; another is a dream-like narrative in which a circle of women friends are visited by an angel. There are reflections and accounts of the Holocaust and the Yugoslav Civil War; portraits of European artists; a recipe for Caraway Soup; a moving story of a romantic encounter the narrator has in Lisbon; descriptions of family photographs; memories of the small town in which Ugresic was raised.

Addressing the themes of art and history, aging and loss, The Museum is a haunting and extremely original novel. In the words of the Times Literary Supplement, it is vivid in its denunciation of destructive forces and in its evocation of what is at stake.

Dubravka Ugresic (27 March 1949 – 17 March 2023) was a Yugoslav-Croatian and Dutch writer. She majored in comparative literature and Russian language at the University of Zagreb’s Faculty of Arts, pursuing parallel careers as a scholar and as a writer. 

Ugresic published novels and short story collections. Her novella “Steffie Speck in the Jaws of Life” was published in 1981. Her novel “Fording the Stream of Consciousness” received the NIN Award in 1988, the highest literary honor in former Yugoslavia, whose winners include Danilo Kis and Milorad Pavic; Ugresic was the first woman to be awarded the prize.


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