Friday, February 15, 2008

(About the book of Dr. Zyhdi Dervishi, "The crossed glimpses on the sea''

By: Prof. Dr. Jakup MATO

In the impetuous and irrepressible flow of I current' Albanian editions, it is difficult to I distinct real scientific or artistic values from I the ordinary values written by scriveners. It I happens like in a mountain when the stray I turns of the fallen leaves have covered the flows of vivifying waters. It is needed a careful work to discover them. Something similar it happens also to editions when poems, stories, sensational and erotic literature, memories, studies, valuable or without any value have covered important books. The artistic criticism even the scientific one if it exists has lost the orientation. The artistic criticism even the scientific criticism turned into almost friendly advertisement. In this whirl of the editions and in a fog of criticism suffer more the scientific editions which do not succeed to be taken into consideration appropriately.

Anyhow, the book it has a strange fate. The artistic and scientific, sociological and practice values of the books with such real values can't be Obscured by anything. Zyhdi Dervish’s book "The crossed glimpses on the sea" was edited last year. a theoretical and practical study in the field of the sociology of culture. In it, as underlined in the subtitle, it was made a comparative analysis between cultures through socio-cultural integration of the Albanian emigrants in Italy. After you read this book your mind is preoccupied wide a multitude of extremely interesting issues of theoretical and practical character: and it leaves an impression on you that until now this book or the problems that were presented in this book didn't attract the media attention, although the author is often present in these media. In this edition in your memory remain significant facts and data, sometimes figures sometimes the detailed sayings through sincere interviews which very often distress you with the dramatic subject and the coloring they contain. Through them come out into conspicuousness some characteristics of cultural co-actions in actual conditions of Albanian massive emigrations and some dramatic situations they reminisce. The conclusions for every issue are proved with the given examples and numerous data. But, even if the reader has any fixed idea for an issue, he is informed with new and rich facts that make him think.

The structure of the book forms the trio: Albanian culture. Italian culture, and the intermediate link among them, emigrants. In these processes they are the receptors but they keep and show also the characters of their national culture, certainly with differences according to the experience, education, provincial features etc. In this study it was shown that the emigrants bring a national cultural structure, with good and bad sides, with a medley of opinions and practical experiences. But, at the same time it has been proved in details that they are also usurpers of a foreign rich culture. The author often refers to the theoretical theses for the elements of culture, but he insists more on facts, practices and life data. In general it is not spoken about the components of the culture, as for instance: the living culture, production, artistic culture which for decades developed in quite propagandistic forms. He deals with its particular and concrete elements, as tolerance, sincerity, courage, correctness, rationalism, competition, optimism, pledge, patriotism, the characteristics of human's life in the automation society and many other issues. Therefore, a lot of issues create a link with some of main cultural spheres but they create the possibility to be discovered by social psychology and the consciousness of social groups. All these elements of culture can be seen on their opposite side, when they appear as values or when they appear with elements of anti-values. Thus, when we deal with innovative soul at the same time we deal with adoption processes, with the occurrence of spiritual inertia, and in such a case he has studied the sincerity and naivety events, mutual respect but also prejudices. Also many features and other cultural particularities are studied on their opposite side. This had an influence on the presentation of elements with an attractive and modem language. The contemporary sociological theories that it can be realized clearly are well known by the author are used as instruments to he discovered in details the colorings that use cultural feature, during mutual influences or coincidences on a, a con sequence of the changes between cultural structures of both nations. The author of this study has collected extraordinary factual material through interviews, conversations, and special editions for these topics. He aims to go deep into consciousness of experiences and psychological situations of the social groups he studies. The living and dynamic alternation of theoretical instruments and of concrete living data composes a precious value, even special one from the methodological standpoint. In order to be proved the presented ideas for study, he omen calls for help also the theses of other scholars of mind, spiritual culture and social psychology. The skillful conjunction of sociological theoretical theses with life evidences discovered through reminiscences and confessions of the emigrants make the book to he read also as a serious: scientific study, as an attractive edition, satiated with emotional and sincere confessions of the interviewed. The value of such an edition is determined from the object of study, after the research of the cultural confrontations between emigrants and natives, since in 1998 Albania had 528 thousand emigrants: while now their number has been increased much, more. Their life problems, among other factors, depend on their adaptation capability with other cultures and the levee, of their own culture. Due to this reason, parallel with scientific values of the developed theoretical issues, this edition presents a special practical interest. Many cultural elements of Albanian emigrants ate researched in the beginning by the author to find out in which scale they possess contemporary values and after this he researches them in comparison with Italian culture, or more concretely with the culture of Siena inhabitants. When he brings them together he discovers joint Clements, colorings of differences, mutual influences and oppositions: and he stands out with objectivity the real values and detects of one or another culture. Although time after time it seems that, the feelings and courage for Albanian ethno-cultural traditions intervene to stress the virtues of the compatriots; in general the scholar is object and is characterized by a critical glimpse, therefore he differs real and rich values but also weaknesses and cultural detects of both cultures, while he is not at all under the influence of xenophobic psychology, or xenophobic mania. Anyhow, the author was able to make deep researches for Albanian culture through the conceptual sociological instruments, and to stress its propensities towards some samples of the culture of western civilization. 19 Such a study presents numerous difficulties to explain theoretical meanings of the issues moreover to collect the factual material. The author had to clarify even in the beginning what do we exactly understand by the notion "culture". Among hundred formulations, the author stresses as more accepted the definition that culture is an entirety, of mentalities and the models of behavior and of the living manners that reflect on the entire activity of the culture members. In this way the notion culture includes all mentalities and practices despite their nature and quality. In Albanian editions culture has been perceived as an entirety of achievements (values) in material and spiritual life, a dentition that is closer with Robin William's idea mentioned in the book that perceives the culture, only on values, neglecting those that are not qualitative achievements.

The dentition that was taken as a basis, if it can be discussed, creates the possibilities for more completed standpoints of chiaroscuros of every cultural feature. When he researches the mentalities, experiences and models of the behavior of Albanian emigrants (according to the groups and educational level), the author aims at the same time to discover and prove how much they are oriented towards the medication of the models according to Italian standards. But at the same time it shows how much is strong the force of the tradition in order not to abandon the samples of Albanian culture. He researches from several standpoints every cultural and psychological feature (creative soul, courage, pledge, openness etc.) showing in which culture are presents superlative values and in which stand out the defects. In order to prove his theses the author used fully surveys and their data are presented graphically. Certainly, the surveys have their defects too, since all it depends on number and composition of those who were researched. Anyhow, they speak with an expressive and emotional language, special clearness, with concrete figures regarding some truths that are connected with the concerns of large groups of emigrants. So, about 72% of the interviewed emigrants say that in the working relationship, Italians arc a little or fairly sincere, this it proves big difficulties they face due to the lack of correctness in the working relationship, failure to implement the agreements as a consequence of greediness and the dishonest exploitation of unprotected foreign manpower. The author used the surveys' dawn, according to scientific criterions, dithering ages, experiences and completed education from each group. It has been proved that the judgments of those who have a superior education usually are more objective and convincible.

Likewise all other cultural values that have been researched, the value of tolerance as a possibility to amortize the conflicts between cultures, its general features in the culture of the world and Albanian mentality or optimism and pessimism as the formed spiritual states by living conditions are developed with a rich theoretical and factual material, focusing at the same time several other problems that are connected and mutually subordinated. So, it has been shown that during the period when the emigrants were in desperation, for some time paled also the feeling of patriotism. But, that feeling is waking up and it is coming to life as an expression or mentality in order to nod its own dignity. [( is interesting the gained conclusion after several surveys and analyses that Albanian superior educated specialists feel more and more themselves as a foreigner in emigration and they are not attracted any more by the commodity and profit. In this study, according to the way in which it was developed the scientific subject is attractive especially the chapter where are treated theoretically and practically the issues of ethnocentrism and xenon-centrism, the basic idea that the propensities and psychosis of ethnocentrism transform your own culture into a comparative criterion for the evaluation of other cultures, bad or good ones, high or low, serves to enlighten several events in the relationships between emigrants and foreigners and some contradictions that crone out. When we treat the ethnocentrism, mentalities that were inspired by the monist ideology we get some conclusions for cultural, social and economical consequences that were brought in Albanian life.

In this study were developed and examined, o many 1ife problems and mentalities of the emigrants, always compared with the jives that you can create the idea that you will tined then: all emigrants' concerns with j all their contradictions. How to survive and to adapt to the working conditions and life conditions in a foreign land, how they build the relationships between Albanians and foreigners, do they have to risk or to be stained with common pronto, should they be sincere, naive cry emotional or rational, reserved or malice should they create the families with foreigners or only with Albanians, should they go back to fatherland one day or to stay and be always as emigrants and serial other problems are treated with al! Their contradictions, with all their reelections in different groups, according to the age, experience, level of education. In the end you are shocked by the conclusions that the author gets by researching the judgments of many emigrants who notice that in there country, in Albania, became alienated many cultural and moral values: the human and altruist spirit is being replaced by the spirit of harsh and often dishonest competition, the collectivist spirit of facing, the difficulties is being replaced by extreme individualism, the pledge, to keep one'$ given word, has been transformed into a practical trick for profit, human values are replaced by the fevers of enrichment. So, a lot of Albanian noble cultural values arc transformed into problematic forms. So the emigrants, also in the fatherland, find the second, desperation. All these ideas, although given as prejudgments are also a consequence of a lot of interviews and conversations.

In the book "The crossed glimpses on the sea" is researched and developed a multitude of problems that must be recognized by the Albanian society, especially the emigrants. The content of this edition will help them to clarify the attitude for many issues, to go deeper on their judgments and activities, to distinct real cultural values they havoc and the cultural values of natives. This book will make them be more conscious for many problems they have to face in the foreign land. The data and the conclusions of this edition can be used also by different organizations that deal with social problems, or with emigrants in order to be informed with them and to be found a more useful solution for some of them.

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