In our thematic examination of the Adriatic isles we look at the culture, history and natural bounty of the island of Mljet, situated in the magical waters facing Dubrovnik. Along with the crossing of the apostle Paul’s travels and this island, and a literary residence at an Odyssean refuge, readers will learn of the fascinating careers of people that have left Mljet to live in New York and California.
The May issue of Matica magazine is now available, featuring a cornucopia of homeland and diaspora news and current events in the Americas and our nearer European neighbourhood. Our eminent contributing authors offer seventy pages and hundreds of images, the most prized of which are photographs taken in the authentic metropolitan locations on distant continents that are home to multiple generations of ethnic Croatian diaspora communities, from Pittsburgh to São Paulo, all ably brought to you by Matica editor Ljerka Galic.
The news from the State Office for Croats Abroad focuses on a record five hundred scholarships provided for young people of Croatian extraction from abroad in this academic year. We also report on the financial assistance provided through the Croatian Government for Croatians in neighbouring Bosnia-Herzegovina in their efforts to deal with the SARS-CoV-2 epidemic fears.
Young historian Josip Mihaljević of the University of Zagreb’s Croatian Institute of History discusses thirty years of the work of Croatian parliament since it transitioned to a modern multiparty system.
We also take an in-depth look at the impact of the earthquake that struck Zagreb on 22 March of this year, including the damage caused to one of the nation’s symbols, the cathedral in Zagreb, and the happily relatively minor damage suffered by the headquarters of the Croatian Heritage Foundation.
Looking back 140 years we recall the words of writer August Šenoa penned following the 1880 Zagreb earthquake.
Matica reports on the chief outcomes of the Croatian term at the head of the revolving presidency of the Council of the European Union, including the Zagreb Declaration on the western Balkans, and the repatriation of Croatians from third countries and of other EU residents to their homes during the coronavirus scare. We also look at the solidarity exhibited among the 27 European Union members in the face of this unparalleled economic and healthcare crossroads. Another aspect of the situation is the humanitarian assistance for the homeland provided from around the world by members of our diaspora communities from Norway to the United States of America. The Croatian Fraternal Union, always present in homeland solidarity, continues to successfully coordinate its operations in the face of the economic paralysis of the global economic landscape occasioned by the SARS-CoV-2 scare.
Don’t miss the columns penned by our long-standing contributing columnists Šimun Šito Ćorić, Darko Mihelj, Marin Knezović, Marjana Kremer, Davor Schopf, Nino Sorić and Sanja Vulić.
Please note that all articles are accompanied by a concise English language summary.
In our thematic examination of the Adriatic isles we look at the culture, history and natural bounty of the island of Mljet, situated in the magical waters facing Dubrovnik. Along with the crossing of the apostle Paul’s travels and this island, and a literary residence at an Odyssean refuge, readers will learn of the fascinating careers of people that have left Mljet to live in New York and California, including Niko Hazdovac, a great humanist, philanthropist and patriot with roots on the island of Mljet that has found his home in California’s San Pedro.
Our editorial board joins the celebration of St George’s day in the homeland and abroad with cover art featuring the lively and gentle colours of spring.
On the topic of Book Night, we look at the CHF’s virtual festival of diaspora publications. The May issue of Matica magazine also brings you the life stories of two exceptional writers of poetry and lyrics, Maja Perfiljeva and Vjenceslav Čižek, natives of the picturesque Boka Kotorska region in neighbouring Montenegro. Their careers took them outside of their native region and saw them included during their lifetime in some of the top anthologies of Croatian twentieth century poetry. Perfiljeva penned some of the top ballads of Croatian pop music, writing for the Indeksi band out of Sarajevo and producing hits like Bokejska Noć (‘Night in Bokelj’), an ode to her native region performed by Vice Vukov. Émigré Čižek found refuge in Germany and authored heart wrenching poetic miniatures that have been woven into the fabric of Croatian spiritual lyricism of the dismal years of communist rule.
The Memo Museum in Pula is a novelty that is sure to pique the reader’s interest.
Among the anniversaries of note is the golden jubilee of the Croatian Catholic Mission in the German city of Koblenz, gathering some four thousand members.
Also in this issue is a mosaic of news and events in the Crorama section (Hrvoje Salopek) and sports news (Željko Rupić).
By: Vesna Kukavica
(Link: Matica 5/2020)