Janko Veselinović, Poetry, periodics, theatre

Slobodanka Peković

Јанко Веселиновић, Проза, периодика, позориште


Beograd: Institut za književnost i umetnost;

Cataloguing data:

ISBN 86-7095-113-4
COBISS.SR-ID 134849036


The literary opus of Janko Veselinović shows how the overlapping of a literary work and the expectations of the reading public creates a cultural climate which, in accordance with the norms of morality and ideology, changes the relationship between criticism (aesthetics) and the reading public. Veselinović was a writer whose value was determined by the ideology of the era, so that a new reading re-evaluates, to the extent that it is objectively possible, the critical view of Veselinović’s opus. Recently, the way of reading works of literature has changed considerably, and different things are expected of literature and literary texts. Thus, negatively evaluated features of his novels are today considered to be virtues, so that, for example, the individual destinies of his literary characters gain in importance as manifestations of the collective consciousness.

In his novels, short stories and plays, the author expressed allegiance to the traditional moral and cultural values, which rejected all manifestations of the modern. His short stories and the unfinished novel A Hero of Our Time are far from Rousseau’s praise of nature and the natural (which, in our circumstances, are recognised as the village and the rural), for the everyday life and problems depicted in his works show that the writer marked the social and moral issues of his time, and that his works already manifest the undermining of the image of the idyllic unity of a happy collective.

The modern is mostly seen as a part of the city culture and morality, and is presented as a negative principle in relation to the rural culture. In this respect, of greatest interest is the novel Stanko the Outlaw, which turned from a critically maligned work to “the best” Serbian novel, while A Hero of Our Time, after the initial negative reviews, has become an example of a modern novel in more recent readings. Similarly, Veselinović’s short stories and, in particular, his editorial work in periodicals, have been interpreted in new ways.


Janko Veselinović, short story, novel, periodicals, the theatre, storyteller, editor, cultural climate, the epoch