Two Autobiographies in Verses Cover Image

Dvije autobiografije u stihovima
Two Autobiographies in Verses

Author(s): Sanja Grakalić Plenković
Subject(s): Croatian Literature, Theory of Literature
Published by: Wydawnictwo Uniwersytetu Śląskiego
Keywords: autobiography; Ivana Brlić-Mažuranić; Vladimir Nazor
Summary/Abstract: Although verses as a form are rarely chosen by autobiographers, the history of Croatian autobiography shows that some writers have had the inclination towards writing autobiographies in verses. The form of a poem can be linked with the beginnings of writing autobiographical texts and with the autobiographical discourse in the works of Croatian writers. Even though it has not been in the focus of interest of autobiographical theory, the autobiographical elements can be found in the period spanning from the 15th- and 16th-century Croatian poetry in the works of the Croatian Latinists up to the present time which represents the golden period of autobiographic writing. Focusing on the autobiographers’ inclination to write in verse (from heterogenous autobiographies, where verses are incorporated into the text itself, to autobiographies poems), this paper shows the marginal place that the form of a poem occupies in the field of researching and defining autobiography as a genre. The fact has been corroborated by providing an outline of verses in autobiographies and autobiographies in verses throughout the history of Croatian literature. Special attention is given to two autobiographies-poems, written by two contemporary writers of Croatian Moderna ‒ Ivana Brlić-Mažuranić (Autoportrait from Rogaška Slatina; 1932) and Vladimir Nazor (Autobiography; 1927). Having in common the form and some themes and motifs (such as looking back at their lives, the author, the narrator and the main character being one and the same person, retrospective perspective), these two autobiographies show how placing emphasis on intimate elements, the form of a poem can be used to write an autobiography. Without putting into question the theme, the place of the narrator/poet in telling about or taking attitude towards the reality or experiences lived, factographic elements which dominate the early 20th century autobiographies, here are largely overshadowed by the more personal and emotional elements.

  • Page Range: 223-237
  • Page Count: 15
  • Publication Year: 2021
  • Language: Croatian