Augustin Juretić published the book Tito perseguidor (Tito the Persecutor) under the pseudonym Georgius Liburnicus in 1952, in the early years of socialist Yugoslavia. The year of the publication is even more important as it was a time of change in Yugoslav foreign policy with its turning towards the Western countries. In an effort to normalise relations with the West, Yugoslavia began the partial democratisation of its society and endeavoured to present itself as a society embracing democratic values. Tito the Persecutor confutes this image of Yugoslavia in the Western media, and reveals the true nature of the communist regime, describing the persecution of the Catholic Church and its clergy.
The book can be regarded as providing cultural opposition as its entire content deals with criticism of socialist Yugoslavia. It is written in the Spanish language, one of the world languages, and is thus accessible to a greater number of readers as well as policy makers.
After the failure to register of the Croatian Review in France, Nikolić settled in Barcelona in 1968, where he received the Spanish government’s permission to publish the quarterly periodical. Permission was granted to him for a period of twenty years, and that concession was valid from 9 September of 1970 to 9 September 1990. This was precisely the year when Nikolić returned to Croatia, where review has once more been published since 1991. The Croatian Review was clandestinely read among the Croatian Marxist intelligentsia, and because of its influence it represented a great threat to the Yugoslav socialist regime.
Life Flows Quietly By.../Partisans (1957), director Binka Zhelyazkova, script-writer Hristo Ganev, cameraman Vasil Holiolchev
The movie was created from the point of view of participants in the communist resistance who truly believed in the communist utopia. Initially, the script was entitled "Partisans". The plot is built around the clash between former partisans who remain true to their ideals and partisans who betray them. The principal character is a former partisan leader who is an embodiment of moral degradation, narrow-mindedness, touchiness and presumption and who exchanged his ideals for the high position of director general. After a series of well-described deep psychological dramatic situations, the end of the movie increases the feeling of despair and no future.
The creation of the film went through a number of obstacles. After a series of discussions of the script, the screen tests, the directorial script, the finished movie etc., in 1958 the film was banned with a Decree of the Central Committee of the Bulgarian Communist Party regarding the state and the further development of the Bulgarian cinematography. The chronology and the locations where the discussions took place as well as the participants reveal the censorial mechanisms, the institutions and the strong centralization of the party policy of direct intervention in the creative process. The discussions of the film script began in 1955 in the Artistic Council (AC) of the Feature Film Studios (FFS); on that level there were different opinions and a number of artists shared positive views about the script of Hristo Ganev; they found it to be "absolutely necessary", "innovative, brave script which disclosed problems that needed to be solved' and even recommended "sharpening". The directorial script of Binka Zhelyazkova was also supported by some of the cinematographers. There were brave positive opinions about the finished movie as well. The meetings were then moved to the office of the Minister of Culture. There were debates on that level as well. The then Director of FFS Georgi Yovkov declared: "This will be a useful movie. We always plead realism but very often we kill it." Many of the cinematographers present openly supported the film in which they saw "perfect conformity of directorial concept and visual decision". The Artistic Council of FFS nominated in early 1958 the movie for participation at the festival in Karlovy Vary in 1958; another contested movie, "On the Small Island" (director Rangel Valchanov, script-writer Valeri Petrov, cameraman Dimo Kolarov), was nominated for the festival in Cannes. Several months later there was another final discussion of the finished movie with the new title "Life Flows Quietly By..."; the meeting was presided over by the head of the Administration of Cinematography. Although there were debates even on that level and the cinematographers present defended the movie, it was stigmatized mainly by former partisans holding high public positions, predominantly military, as unsound, slanderous and anti-party "film which is only capable of giving grounds to our enemies to talk against the party and the partisan movement", "pernicious and it will harm the working class in the people's democratic countries as well as in the capitalist countries". The final decision about the movie was made by the Central Committee of the Bulgarian Communist Party with the Decree of July 5, 1958. "There are particular films which present our reality one-sidedly and distortedly such as "Life Flows Quietly By...". In fact, this film dethrones the image of the national partisans, slanders their struggle and dedication to the national cause, makes untrue generalizations about our reality." The movies "Life Flows Quietly By..." and "On the Small Island" were banned. The executive bodies of the Administration of Cinematography, the Feature Film Studios and the Ministry of Culture were replaced. The party censorship strengthened. "Life Flows Quietly By..." was shown 31 years later, in 1988 (all quotations of reports from the discussions and of resolutions are by Станимирова 2012: 93-142).
The troubles of the movie increased the feeling of fear and insecurity among the then Bulgarian film-workers and paralyzed the entire cinema production in Bulgaria. Nevertheless, in the following years and decades, there still were vanguard, brave and engaged original films.
This is an undated, typewritten five-page document from the mid-1940s. The document was prepared by the Public Prosecutor’s Office in Zagreb. The list contains approx. 150 authors and books which were to be urgently banned from further distribution. The authors on the list shared different worldviews, but the variety of the literary genres on the list indicates the extent to which the communist authorities endeavoured to halt literary production of all those, whose work and values failed to adhere to the communist ideology.
Iljko Karaman took the document illegally from the Public Prosecutor's Office and stored it in his home collection, which ended up at the Croatian State Archives in 1992. The material is available for research and copying and was used in the publications by Deniver Vukelić and Josip Grbelja as sources for studying the postwar communist censorship.
- Zagreb, Croatia
- Charakteringas eksponatas: