Tijana Rakočević, born in 1995 in Montenegro, is a poet, playwright, and writer of fiction as well as a doctoral student at the Faculty of Philology in Nikšić and a member of the editorial board of the literary and cultural newspaper Fokalizator. She has published the poetry collection Sve blistavi quanti (RVP, 2018) and the short story collection Intimus (Fokalizator, 2023).
She received the CEI Award for Young Writers 2023 in Ljubljana, on 6 September 2023, during the Vilenica International Literary Festival.
CEI Deputy Secretary General, Nina Kodelja, highlighted that the award - launched in 2021 in cooperation with the Slovene Writers’ Association – is meant to support the circulation of literary works in the CEI region through the translation in various languages. “This is in line with the objectives of CEI cultural cooperation which promotes actions in favor of enhancing dialogue, mutual understanding and good neighbourly relations” Kodelja said.
Rakočević expressed her gratitude underlining that the award represents a major recognition and encouragement for her future work. “For me, writing is the expression of my immense love for the human civilization that, regardless the mistakes, thanks to art has been progressing for thousands of years. Through writing I reveal with words the darkness which is inside and around us” Rakočević stated.
The jury committee emphasised that
“With her writing, Tijana Rakočević has unsettled the dominant heteronormative view in Montenegrin literature – which is saturated with rural symbolism and folklore myths – and, instead, established a new narrative paradigm from a feminist perspective and using an innovative form of communication between the literary text and the culture in which it was created. Tijana Rakočević’s prose is in lockstep with contemporary literary trends, and through her precise, analytical and unyielding writing, she simultaneously decolonizes the female body and lays bare how society has come to accept violence against women and sexual minorities.”
The awarding ceremony was followed by the CEI Roundtable discussion on “The Diverse Face of Europe” with the participation of prominent authors and experts.
Tijana Rakočević presented some excerpts from her work in Trieste, at the historical Caffè San Marco, on 7 September, together with the authors Barbara Korun (Slovenia) and Ottó Tolnai (Hungary/Serbia).
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