The Dialectics Of National Self-Criticism

Some time in the autumn of 1994, Sorin Alexandrescu asked in an interview in 22 magazine why, in the canonical battle between the various radical-democrat and nationalist structures of the opposition (and of the government), more attention is not paid to the real traditions


I am overcome with horror at the thought that we, Romanians, are facing 'eternity': the proverb. We enter other nations' proverbs like the Scotsman, the Irishman, the Jew, and – in the Balkan Peninsula – the Gypsy. We've brought shame upon ourselves,

Jungle: The Daily Dose Of Excess

excerpts Unfortunately, in this country we talk, but do not communicate, in the sense of a science of communication. This is particularly obvious in the public area, where people do not express thanks, do not salute, and address each other on familiar terms without justification.

From The Country Of Jackasses

III. The Culture of Jackasses When an ass leaves his village to go live in the city a wonderful change occurs in him: his asininity leaves the body and sets straight into the soul. In donkey parlance this means the respective jackass becomes cultivated. Thus, an educated

Notes Of A Hypochondriac

The other Monday walking on Victoriei Road I met a friend. It is a well-known fact that today any guy you treat to a glass of wine at Fialkowsky's or who is in the delightful habit of bumming two or three lei from you is called a friend. Last year, this guy borrowed

Caragiale, Laughter And The Romanians' Nature

And let's be serious for a moment, if just as a whimIon Luca Caragiale In L'Art du roman, Milan Kundera remarked, while speaking of Rabelais, that he coined a significant number of neologisms, many of which have entered French, and then other languages. Not all


The Romanian, in general, although he has a sense of humor, is serious and pondering. He dislikes banter. This explains why Caragiale's works, to many people's amazement, are not relished enough across the nation. […] The Romanian is constructive, steadfast,


…The niggler is a staunch patriot, an exclusive nationalist, a Romanian to the marrow! Everyone must know it! Whether his party is in office or, when unfortunately this is not possible, in opposition, the niggler congratulates Rrromania in the first case, bewails it in

An Innocent Abroad

When Mark Twain published the elaborate account of his Old World tour, The Innocents Abroad, America was still young, as a nation, and not yet proud of its culture. To avoid any tasteless outcry of admiration, driven by the contact with the vestiges of lost civilizations

The Sadness In The Eyes Of The Immigrant

The Romanians from Down Under To my Victoria from the South Pacific IslandsKo te mana o tenei matenga whetu aianeE poturi i ro o te rangi e piki mai* In Aotearoa (New Zealand), I met happy Romanians. Their happiness was either blended with sadness, or boosted up by it.


It will take us a lot of tenacity to modify wrong geographic notions, fanciful historical data, to prove to the Westerner that what we suffer from is too much instruction, that the Romanian intellectual is blasé and smiles condescendingly at the unintuitive foreign lecturer's

Romanian Profile

*excerpts THE SOPHISTICATED PEASANTS The Romanians are a social phenomenon. As a nation among nations, they are westerners evolved in the East. They are Latins surrounded by Slavs. They are Romans two thousand years away from Rome. They are contemporaries re-produced on