Prof.Dr Aleksandër Stipçeviq; G’jya arbnëshe e ruajtun 300 vjet
Intervistë me ilirologun, balkanologun, arkeologun e akademikun arbënesh, Aleksandër Stipçeviq-Shandri Akademik prof. Dr Aleksandër Stipçeviqi, shkencëtari arbënesh, që kurrë nuk e ka fshehur prejardhjen e vet shqiptare, me hulumtimet, studimet dhe publikimet e veta u bë një nga figurat më emblematike të ilirologjisë, e sidomos në polemikat rreth prejardhjes së shqiptarëve-trashëgimtarëve të ilirëve. Është i shquar në disa fusha shkencore.
Bisedën e zhvilluam gjatë panairit të librit “Ulqini 2008”, në gjuhën Arbanase (arbëneshe), ashtu siç flitet në Arbanasi (Arbënesh) të Zadrës. Po bëhen afër 300 vjet që arbëneshët jetojnë larg trungut shqiptar, të izoluar dhe nën ndikimin e shumë kulturave dhe gjuhëve. Lexuesit do të ketë mundësinë të kënaqen, që prej shkencëtarit dhe akademikut 78 vjeçar arbënesh të njihen me mënyrën e të shprehurit të arbëneshëve të Zadrës (Zara, Dalmacia, Kroacia).
Kush është akademik Aleksandër Stipçeviqi-Shandri?
Kom le në Arbnesh në vjetin 1930, jam arbnesh. Të parët e mi jan pe Shestani, e kan arl në Zarë ne vjetin 1726. Kom diplomua arkeologjinë në vjetin 1954 e kom doktorua në vjetin 1977. Jam në pensiun goti nizet vjet, e mbetem gjol në Zagreb.
Në kuadër të panairit të librit “Ulqini-2008”, organizatori, një mbrëmje ua kushtoi juve, veprimtarisë dhe krijimtarisë suaj mbi gjysmëshekullore?
Për mua kjo manifestacion ko ken shum interesante, përse jam për të parën er këtu në Ulqin. I kom ndesh shum miç pe Tirane, pe Maqedonie e pe Kosovës e plus miç të re këtu çish i kom njos këtu në Ulqin. Unë mendoj se kjo dit për mua asht shum interesante.
I nderuar profesor, keni dhënë kontribut të jashtëzakonshëm në fushën e ilirologjisë, ballkanologjisë, albanologjisë, arkeologjisë dhe të komunikologjisë e bibliografisë. Çfarë jeni duke punuar tani?
Der tash un kom shkrua libra pe në disa fusha shkencore. Tash i kom mbarua çikto puna, e po thkej në Arbnesh. Tash kom zan, jo veç kom zan po dizhdo vjet po mbleli materialin me shkrua ni libër mbi kultura popullore ol tradicionale në Arbnesh. Kjo asht i mbromi moment për me shkrua at libër përse kta jet e plaka po dekin e për dizhdo vjet s’ko me pat ken me puvet. Por, tash çi po shkon mir, un e kom bo ni material fort të mal e un mendoj se për në shkosht kshtu para, për dy a tri vjet ky libër ko me ken libër i trash, ko me ken i goti. Ashtu se pas po punoj me gji forcat në ket tem e për pesmlet dit po shkoj në Arbnesh me intervistat ele diç jete pleç, për me kompletua kta dokumentat, porse tash kom zan me shkrua tekstin, po, po më mufijojnë dizhdo pun ashtu mos mu thkye mbropa e me puvet dokond do për donifar elementit a e kom mor vesh mir ose jo. Ashtu se un mendoj kjo faz, ko me duet ele ni vjet, ni vjet e xhys, e masandan e kom me shkrua tekstin.
Për ta kompletuar materialin për këtë libër, kishit dëshirë që të vizitonit vendet e të parëve tuaj. Për herë të parë ishit edhe në Shestan, prej nga e keni prejardhjen. Si e ndiet veten në Shestan?
Kur der tash s’kom ken në ket reth kah kan ordh arbneshët e Zarës. Kom ken me po Shestanin. Osht ni katund shum i mal. Mua shum ma kanda se kom ken tash për t’parën er e kom mujt me poe pe sfar katundi kan arl arbneshët në Zarë. Un kom mendua se kta katundar arbnesh kon mbet xhol ktu mir, se kon pat fusha, bagtijat kan… Tash kur e kom poe ket katund po poe se ko ken vendin të varfun, nuk kan pas çish me angër -ashtu me san-, e kur kan arl kta venecijanët i kan san se afër Zares ko fusha, ko bagtija, ko gji ata çish dyet e shpijën kon me bo. E ashtu ata kon vot pe kësaj afër Zare. Nuk kan fijua, se me san t’vërtetën, ju kon godit shpijat para se me arl atje, ju kan lan fushat, ju kan lan bagtijat e çish dyet me mbet gjol. E ata jon sistematizua afër Zare e un mendoj se der tash po mbesin gjol mir.
Profesor i nderuar, jeni arkeolog e ilirolog i shquar. Para disa ditëve është publikuar se në Ohër është zbulua një varrezë-skelet i një princeze ose fisnike ilire, i vjetër rreth 7.000 vjet. Cili është mendimi juaj?
Kesosh vornje të princezave, van të mbretreshave të ilirëve ko mjaft në teritor të ilirëve. Un për ket zbulim të ri nuk e kom ndje. Kur ko me kon i publikum kom me mujt me san çish osht ata. Për tash nuk muj me komentat përse nuk muj me fol pa e poe.
Pas shumë kohe, fjalori i arbëreshëve të Zarës, punuar nga Dr.Kruno Krstiqi, i përkthyer në gjuhën shqipe, do të botohet me ndihmën e Universitetit Mbretëror “Iliria” dhe komunës së Strugës në SHB “Toena”. Cili është vlerësimi Juaj?
Ky fjalor i Kruno Krstiqit ko ken i botuar, le frk ato 1.000 copa i kan shit e i kan lan. Ata kan vot në Arbnesh, në Zarë, por kush ka vot në Amerikë etj. Ne kemi arl në ide me bo ribotim-reprintin. Un mendoj se kët vjet ko me dol reprinti. Por, ky tjetri, ketu ke ideja me bo ni përkthim të ktij fjalori asht ni ide shum bukur përse Krstiqi e ko lan fjalën arbnisht e gji komentarin në shkenisht ose në kroatisht.
Nuk osht mjaft ata përse nuk osht ai fjalor veç për ata çish e din shkenishten, van për gji ata çish meren me ilirologjin, me balkanologjin e albanologjin. Kurse ideja me bo përkthimin e kti fjalori, kta çish osht në shkenisht me bo në ship osht ide shum i mir e un mendoj se ko me ken i botuam ky fjalor jo vetëm në kolon ship-arbnisht, çish e ka bo Mehmet Latifi, po osht mo mir me bo në tri kolona e munjen me lexua aj çish di ship e aj çish di shkenisht. Mendoj se osht vepër shum e mir për me studjua ket historin të shiptarve. Ne e kemi rua ni gjye të plak çish nuk njoset në Shipni. Ata në Shipni, kjo gjya osht ndrua, e naj ne nuk osht ndrua kurxho naj ne osht originale ajo gjye çish osht fol në ket reth të Shkodres mbrapa 300 vjet e kur s’osht ndrua. Ashtu, ne kemi ni relikt të linguistikës çish osht shum interesant kta shkenctor çish jan specialista për historin e gjyes arbnore ship. Un mendoj se dyet me bo ket fjalor se për nizet ose trilet vjet kjo gjye pak ko pak po biret e dyet me rua ata çish der tash osht rue. Ky fjalor, jo vetëm ko me dye shkenctarve, van e arbreshve gji kan nërmend me rua ket gjye në Arbnesh. Çish tash mjaft jet çish dojn me sua ket gjya e dojn me rua gjyen të arbneshve. Kjo ideja ko me ken ni obël pra si me rua ket gjya e jo si me bir se njizet-trilet vjet ne shkot keshtu pak ndokush ko me dit arbnisht. Un e kam san në recensen teme çish vlera e randsi ko ky fjalor çish e ke bo ship. Faleminderit pe arbneshve e lingvistave çish kan me pat me lexua.
Cili është mesazhi i Juaj për shqiptarët në Strugë e gjetiu?
Duet pe në Strugë, e jo veç në Strugë po në gji gjytetat e katundat ku mbesin gjol shiptrarët duet me rua dialketin. Se nuk duet me pat veç gjyen letrare. Ajo osht ni gjye artificiale jo veç në Shipni, van e në gji shtetat tjer. Por keta dialekta, keta duet mi rua se në dialekta po ruen originalitetat si me san, si suet në popul, kjo gjya letrare nuk folet naj jet, naj popul por folet dialekti në secilin gjytet e secilin katund. Duet mi rua këto dialekta e ashtu jo veç në Strugë po e në Arbnesh, në Tiran dyet mi rua gji kto fjala, gji kto format gramatikale e ashtu kena me dit mbrapa niçind vjet, dyçind vjet se sfar gjye ko ken në Shipni në ket moment.
Kur prof.Shandri do të na vijë për vizitë përsëri në Strugë?
Kur kom me ken i sirur. Un kom ken ni er në Strugë, e kom poe Strugën, fort ma kanda. Osht gjytet i bukur e kur kom përbie në at rugën me gur e kom ndie si në Dalmaci. Un mendoj se kam me u sye se osht ni gjytet me san të vërtetën bash i bukur.
Re: Prof.Dr Aleksandër Stipçeviq
Posted: Tue Mar 23, 2010 9:53 pm
Është mirë ti shiqoni videot se si flet Iliriologu i madh A.Stipceviq gjuhën shqipe .
Re: Prof.Dr Aleksandër Stipçeviq
Posted: Tue Mar 23, 2010 9:58 pm
Stipçevic: Shqiptaret e sot, pasardhes autentik te ilireve
ULQIN- “Ne flasim gjuhen arbereshe mes nesh”, tha nje buzembremje te fresket korriku, akademiku i njohur kroat, Aleksander Stipcevic. Ishte nje takim i organizuar ne kuader te Panairit te Tete te Librit Shqip, qe po mbahet prej ditesh ne qytetin e lashte te Ulqinit, ku fteses per pjesemarrje nuk kish nguruar t’i pergjigjej edhe nje nga personalitetet me te njohura te botes akademike te te gjithe Mesdheut. Aleksander Stipcevic, 78 vjec, i njohur ne Shqiperi nga viti 2002 me botimin e tij enciklopedik “Iliret, historia, jeta kultura, simbolet e kultit“, nga Zara e Kroacise, por me te pare nga Shestani, nje zone malore, rreth 60 kilometra larg Ulqinit, vendbanim ku kane qene vendosur shume arbereshe, tha se “ne kete vizite te pare te tij i kishte pelqyer shume Ulqini, por edhe fshati i prejardhjes se tij”. “E kisha deshire te kahershme te vizitoja token e te pareve te mi. Me pelqyen malet dhe relievi“, tha Stipcevic, i cili preferoi qe per disa minuta t’u drejtohej te pranishmeve te ketij takimi me gjuhen e paraardhesve te tij, ashtu sikunder ai ka preferuar qe ne cdo rrethane politike te pohoje pa droje prejardhjen e tij shqiptare. “Kam deshire te flas shqipen qe di nga te paret e mi“, tha akademiku i njohur kroat, i fokusuar ne kete takim nga media te ndryshme, por dhe i ndjekur me interes te plote nga pjesetare te jetes kulturore te qytetit te Ulqinit, nje qytet i dyzuar mes lartesise qe ofron relievi shkembor dhe butesia e bregut te detit.
Akademiku Kroat - Aleksander Stipcevic
Dhe ndoshta ky takim, mbi nje teme aq shume te diskutuar mbi iliret, nuk do te kishte pasur vend me te mire per t’u organizuar se sa ketu ne Ulqin, qyteti ilir i cili ne lashtesine e tij shtrihej nga Kepi i Mendres ne veri deri ku lumi Buna derdhet ne detin Adriatik. Nje nga emrat e njohur te iliriografise, bibliografise, i nderuar dhe nga Presidenca shqiptare disa vite me pare me Urdhrin e Larte “Naim Frasheri” u zgjodh te botohej edhe ne shqip nga perkujdesja e nje prej botuesve te njohur shqiptare, Fatmir Toci. ATSH
“Jam duke punuar per nje liber te ri qe ju kushtohet arberesheve”, ka pohuar Aleksander Stipcevic, akademiku kroat nga Zara e Kroacise, qe ne kete vizite te tij te pare ne Ulqin ka pasur kenaqesi te vizitoje edhe Shestanin, fshatin e te pareve te tij.
Re: Prof.Dr Aleksandër Stipçeviq
Posted: Tue Mar 23, 2010 10:47 pm
Arbanasi - (saktesim:Arbanasi i Kroacise) është vendbanim në juglindje të gadishullit të Zarës, sot pjesë e qytetit të Zarës. Ky vendbanim është krijuar në shek. e 18 me ardhjen e shqiptarëve nga viset jugore të Liqenit të Shkodrës në tri faza të shpërnguljes (në vitin 1726, 1727 dhe 1733). Banor?t e këtij vendbanimi e kan ruajtur gjuh?n dhe kulturën e të parëve.
Arbreshët e njohur
prof. Leonardo-Nardi Bajlo, pedagog sportiv
Romano Bajlo - selektor seleksionit kroat në kajak.
Familja Deshpali / Valter, Maja dhe Pavle – familje muzikantësh e njohur në tërë botën
Shime Deshpali – maestro
mons. Simeone Duca –
Giuseppe-Pino Gjergja – basketbollist – trener i ish repezntacionit jugosllav
Josip Gjergja – politikan dhe diplomat,
Malden Grdoviq – këngëtarë
Tomislav Ivqiq – këngëtarë
Vedran Ivqiq – këgëtarë
dr. Albino Joviq – mjek – kardiolog i njohur
Bozhidar Kalmeta - politikan – aktualisht n? qeverin? kroate
Bernard Kotlar – autor multimedial i CD-së "Zadarski Arbanasi", fitues i shpërblimit "Grba Grada Zadra" (2002.)
Danijel Kotlar – ushtarak në pension,
Marijo Kotlar – piktor -konzervator akademik
dr. Kruno Krstiq – autor i fjalorit të të folurit të arbëreshëve të Zarës
Ivo Lubi?iq – futbollist dhe ekonomist
Hrvoje Macanoviq – baba i gazetaris? sportive n? Kroaci
Xhani Marshan – këgëtar, dhe diplomat në kohët e fundit
Xhuro Marushiq – nji nga themeluesit e gazetës ''Narodnog lista''
Bero Mateshiq – tenor i Zadarskih kantadura
Berto Mateshiq – tenor korrit tv HRT-a
Ivica Mateshiq-Jeremija – i deleguar ushtarak në Itali,publicis
Dalibor Musap – themelues dhe udh?heqes i grup?s Riva - fitues Eurosonga 1989.
dr. Ivo Peroviq – ban i Banovinës Kroate gjat kohës së diktatures së Aleksandrit (?šestojanuarske diktature?)
Dino Peroviq – drejtor i ndërmarrjes -Čistoće? Zarë
prof. Slavko Perović – mjek – pedijatar i njohur
Pavao Lu? Relja – sipas tij ka marr emrin kuarti Relja.
Enco Sovitti – basketbollist
prof. Aleksandar Stipqeviq – ilirolog-historian dhe letrar
Augustin Stipçeviq – shkrimtar
prof. Josip Vladoviq Rela – autor i romanit "Nita" shqip.
dr. Milan Vladoviq – ish kryetar i shoqates të juristëve kroat
Re: Prof.Dr Aleksandër Stipçeviq
Posted: Wed Mar 24, 2010 4:30 pm
THE QUESTION OF ILLYRIAN-ALBANIAN CONTINUITY AND ITS POLITICAL TOPICALITY TODAY
Dr. Aleksander STIPCEVIC
The question of the ethnic and cultural continuity between the early Illyrians and the mediaeval Albanians, besides being one of the most attractive issues of Balkan history, has also acquired a political dimension in recent decades. This is not the first time such a thing has happened in history.
It was the Croats who before anyone else put forward the claim of being descended from the glorious Illyrian people, to the point of identifying themselves with them and giving themselves the name of Illyrians. For centuries, the Croatian language was simply called Illyrian. It is thought that Vinko Pribojevic (Vincentius Priboevius) in the 16th century was the first to include the history of the Illyrians in what might be called a political program. Pribojevic idea; countering the ideology and threat of pan-Germanism, hi used the splendid history of the Illyrians in order to demonstrate a cultural and especially historical superiority to the GERMANS, Italians, and Hungarians. According to Pribojevic, both Queen Teuta and King Agron were Slavs, as were Alexander the Great, Diocletian, and even Aristotle and St. Jerom. (1)
After him, Mauro Orbini, another Croat historian, relaunched the pan-Slavic idea in his well-known book, "Il Regno degli Slavi, hoggi corrottamente detti Schiavoni," published in Pesaro in 1601. The book met with great success and exerted a major influence on historians and politicians of subsequent centuries. Now nobody doubted that the Slavs, especially those of the western portion of the Balkan peninsula, were the direct descendants of the Illyrians. Illyrian was the tongue spoken on the east coast of the Adriatic, and the land inhabited by the southern Slavs, especially the Croats, was Illyria. The Croats adopted the name Illyrian for themselves, though more when abroad and in foreign-language publications than within Croatia itself. (2)
In the first half of the 19th century, the title Illyrian acquired a clear political function among the Croats. The leaders of the Croatian national movement called themselves "Illyrians" (Ilirci). Moreover, the theory of the Illyrian origin of the Croats was at this time embodied in academic form by Ljudevit Gaj, the greatest ideologue of the national movement. It was hi who published a book entitled "Who Were the Old Illyrians?"(3) This treated the question from a historical angle, but which political aims. Gay knew full well that any theory of a direct descent of today’s Croats from the old Illyrians was somehow an exaggeration. However, he believed that the name Illyrian would be the cement binding together the South Slavs in a new cultural and economic entity and a powerful political alliance that could confront the age-old enemies of the South Slav peoples.
The Illyrian ideology of the Croatian national movement was leavened with same doubtful ideas. It was not by chance that, after initial enthusiasm, critics of the idea grasped its weak points and easly refuted Gaj’s basic thesis of the South Slavs.
The political and police authorities of Vienna and Budapest rightly saw the notion of the Illyrian origin of all the South Slavs as a dangerous idea, because it could become an acceptable basis to devise a political program for all the south Slavs. It is therefore no wonder that in 1843 the authorities banned the use of the name Illyrian to designate the Croat national movement.
As time passed, the idea of a direct link between the Illyrians and the Croats was graduallyabandoned. It was the writer and philologist Bogoslav Sulek who delivered the final blow to the theory of the Illyrian origin of the South Slavs. In 1844, he published a treatise on the idea that the South Slavs could not be considered the direct descendants of the ancient Illyrians, but that the Slavs living in the western part of the Balkan peninsula were the result of a long and complicated ethnogenetic process involving the Illyrians but also the Romans, Celts, Goths, and, finally, the Slavs.
It was in the second half of the 19th century and especially in the 20th century that the Illyrian problem acquired a political meaning for another Balkan people, the Albanians.
The problem of the direct descent of the Albanians from the ancient Illyrians was originally purely academic. Researchers attempted to solve this problem on the basis of data that were not always certain or complete, relying mainly on historical and especially linguistic evidence.
The question has for years been obscured by political arguments that have frequently prevailed over academic ones. Of course, this is not the first such case in history. On the contrary, it is enough to recall the way in which Italian archaeologists at the time of fascism attempted to justify Mussolini’s conquests in the Mediterranean basin, how the Greeks today exploit data for the sake of their plans to annex Northern Epirus, and how the Serbs claim that any place where Serbian monuments or graves are found must belong to the Serbian state.
There is no need to recall other similar cases, for those we have mentioned suffice to show how archaeologists have placed their skills at the behest of national politics and ideology. Serbian archaeology and historiography have subjected the Albanians in general to such treatment, especially in Kosova.
After World War II, but especially after the serious events in Kosova in 1981, Serbian archaeologists set to work to refute the theory of the Illyrian ethnic of Albanians.
They are indeed not the first to cast doubt over the historical continuity between the Illyrians and the Albanians. Some specialists, especially Germans, including C. Pauli, H. Hirt, G. Mayer, and F. Cordignano , raised the question of the origin of the Albanian language and the Albanians in general. On the basis of what they considered to be scientific data they drew conclusions that disagreed with the theory that the Albanians are an indigenous population. Even though we do not today agree with their conclusions, we must emphasise that their arguments had no political or still less anti-Albanian overtones, and that they must be taken into consideration with proper seriousness when the problem of the ethnogenesis of the Albanians is discussed.
The politicisation of the problem that was later to become the hallmark of Serbian archaeology and historiography began with the Croat linguist Henrik Baric, who had close ties with Serbian academic and political circles. (6) Baric was a very capable linguist, but the motives impelling him to formulate his Thraco-Moesian theory of the origin of the Albanians remain dubious. His theory rests on linguistic data. The fact that the same linguistic material can be used in support of such diverse theories may alarm any student approaching this problem. Without denying linguists their right to formulate their conclusions on the basis of linguistic material, we must say that there also exist today a large quantity of archaeological, anthropological, ethnological, and ethnomusicological data. The large amount of research in recent decades has thus made it much easier today to tackle the problem of the ethnic origins of the Albanians than 50 or 100 years ago. The result achieved by workers in different disciplines in recent decades have reduced the importance of the work that relied on now obsolete linguistc evidence, and have made the autochthony of the Albanians, i.e. increasingly indisputable.
This conflict between new scientific result and the defenders of now obsolete theories is a phenomenon that can be explained by the increasing politicisation of the issue of Albanian ethnogenesis. In fact, the theory of Albanian autochthony has never been disputed with such determination and savagery as today, precisely when so much scientific proof has been produced in its support. Nevertheless, the number of researchers still today refusing to take into consideration the many arguments supplied by different academic disciplines has shrunk, or, more accurately, absolutely the only researchers who deny the theory of Albanian autochthony are Serbian. (7) Serbian archaeologists and historians began long ago to dispute the autochthony theory, but this opposition increased especially after the great Albanian revolt in Kosova in 1981. It was therefore a consequence of a political event rather than of new scientific data.
The Serbian archaeologist Milutin Garasanin represents a special case. In 1955, he wrote an article in the Prishtina periodical "Përparimi", in which he asserted that the Albanians are the direct descendants of the Illyrians. (8) In the years that followed, Garasanin increasingly fell into line with other Serbian researchers who denied any such descent. This shift became still more evident in connection with the problem of the ethnic allegiance of the Dardanians, who inhabited the Kosova region. This problem became one of the most disputed in archaeology and history, assuming apolitical character after 1981. The Serbs vigorously attacked the idea that the Dardanians were ethnically Illyrian. Not because they were led to this conclusion by scientific evidence, but purely because Kosova was "the cradle of Serbian history" and "holy soil" for the Serbs, and as such could not have been inhabited by a people that were of Illyrian stock and hence claimed by their descendants, the Albanians.
In the past, Serbian researchers had not always been of one mind in allocating the Kosova region to the ancient Daco-Moesians. Milutin Garasanin himself, in his survey of prehistoric Serbia in 1973, openly admits that on the basis of their place names and personal names the Dardanians can be considered Illyrians, and that a Thracian and perhaps Dacian element is evident only in the eastern parts of their territories. (9)
However, when the Serbian Academy of Arts and sciences in 1986 organized a series of conferences on the ties between the Illyrians and the Albanians, this same Garasanin announced that the Dardanians cannot be considered Illyrians because they were ethnically more closely connected with the Daco-Moesian substratum. (10)
It is easy to explain this change in Garasanin’s stand. We are now in a period of history in which relations between the Albanians and Serbs of Kosova, and not only within this region, have dramatically deteriorated and no Serbian researcher can freely express his opinion over the Illyrian-Albanian question without exposing himself to the danger of changes of high treason.
It would be impossible to trace here the progress of the press, television, and radio campaign waged by Serbian researchers against the idea of Albanian autochthony. It is enough to recall an entertaining incident in this campaign which took place in Zagreb in 1982. Two years previously, in 1980, the first volume of the Encyclopaedia of Yugoslavia (Secon Edition) had been published, in which there were two entries, one entitled "Albanci" (Albanians), and the other "Albansko-Jugoslavenski odnosi" (Albanian-Yugoslavian relations). On pages 75-79, the Albanian historian from Kosova, Ali Hadri, had written the part of the entry under "Albanci" that dealt with "the origin and development of the Albanian people," in which he stated that the Albanians are the descendants of the Illyrians. The linguist Idriz Ajeti said the same, considering the Albanian language a successor to the Illyrian tongue.
When this volume had come off the press, the Albanian revolt in Kosova had broken aut, and when the Serbian edition of this same book was under preparation, the Serbian representatives on the Encyclopaedia’s central editorial board rejected the text that had already been published in the Croat edition (which they themselves had approved), and insisted that the two entries should be reformulated according to the ideas of Serbian historians. A long and bitter debate then took place within the editorial board, and was soon reflected in the Zagreb and Belgrade newspapers.(11) Ten contributions from historians and archaeologist were commissioned in order to prepare new versions of these entries.
At that time, the Serbian members of the editorial board could not impose their ideas on others. This meant that the new version that was printed in subsequent editions of the Encyclopaedia of Yugoslavia included textual changes in the sections dealing all mention of the continuity between the Illyrians and Albanians.(12)
Although unable to change what had already been published in the Croat edition, the publisher of the Encyclopaedia of Yugoslavia printed the new versions of the two entries and sent them to subscribers, requesting them to insert them in the appropriate place.
The debate within the Encyclopaedia’s editorial board was also echoed in political circles. At the ninth Congress of the Serbian Communist Party held in Belgrade on 27-29 May 1982, a bitter argument broke out over the ethnic origins of the Albanians. The congress of a political party was of course not the proper place to discuss an academic problem of this kind, but the question had apparently assumed a political character and could not be confined to academic circles.
It was nothing les than the incident involving the two entries in the Encyclopaedia of Yugoslavia that became the spark setting off this unexpected debate at the Serbian Communist Party: Congress. The Albanian linguist Idriz Ajeti referred to this scandalous incident in his speech in order to show that many Serbian researchers and journalists were politicising the issue to the extent that only a political forum could settle it, by political means.
Disgusted by the assaults of the newspapers, Professor Ajeti movingly defended at this congress the theory of the linguistic ties between the Illyrian and Albanian languages, and also the ethnic continuity between the Illyrians and the Albanians (13).
His speech met with an immediate response in the congress hall.
Pretending not to understand why a purely academic problem should become a discussion topic at a political congress, the Serbian historian Jovan Deretic asked in pathetic tones what point there was in politicising the question of the Albanians’ ethnic origin.
Why should the Albanians be the descendants of the Illyrians and not of the Thracians ? There was no point in dragging this question out of its academic context – on condition that the Thracian theory was accepted. The Illyrian theory could not be correct, simply because it was an expression of Albanian imperialism, nationalism, etc. (14) According to Deretic, the Illyrian theory had "a slight whiff of racism" that reminded him of the theory of a pure Aryan race, "and we know very well who inspired that theory." (15) Immediately after Deretic, Petar Zivadinovic took the floor. Zivadinovic was elected a member of the Central Committee of the Serbian Communist Party at this congress. For him, science had still not solved the problem of the ethnic origins of the Albanians, but, although he had never dealt with such academic questions, he knew very well that the Albanians could not be descended from the Illyrians.
The historian Sima Cirkovic also though that the Illyrian theory "stank of racism." (16)
The newspapers at this time were full of articles about the speeches at the conference. "Politika," a Belgrade newspaper with little tolerance for the Albanians, published an article under the headline, "No Campaign, But Creative Criticism."
This newspaper apparently did not stop to consider that this stream of articles written by people who did more to compromise these authors than the Illyrian theory of the ethnic origin of the Albanians.
The book "The Albanians and Their Territories," published by the Albanian Academy of Sciences in Tirana in 1982, and in an English edition in 1985, caused considerable commotion. Albanian authors from Kosova were attacked especially harshly because their work demonstrated the autochthony of the Albanians in the province of Kosova. (17)
These authors attempted in vain to explain that all the articles included in this volume had been previously published in Yugoslavia and were therefore common knowledge long before the book appeared. (18) The attacks persisted because this book discussed what was the most delicate political problem in Kosova.
The campaign against the Illyrian theory intensified alongside the progressive deterioration of the political situation in Kosova. Serbia’s best-known historians appeared on the scene, including the linguist Pavle Ivic, who proceeded to ruin a large part of his own scientific work in order to prove that Serbian and Croatian are a single language. He had never tackled the problems of the Illyrians or Albanians, but it nevertheless emerged that the Albanians could only be of Thracian, not Illyrian origin.
In an interview for the Belgrade weekly NIN, Professor Ivic listed the linguists who have considered the Albanian language a descendant of Thracian and then recalled the well-known but now obsolete argument that the Albanians could not have lived on the Adriatic and Ionian coast, because they possessed word for fish.
According to Professor Ivic, the problem of the Illyrian origin of the Albanians is complicated, but there is nevertheless no question of any doubt that the Albanians are not descendants of the Illyrians and are therefore not indigenous to the province of Kosova. This is precisely what the journalist interviewing him and the magazine’s readers wanted to hear. (19)
A controversy then sprang up in the pages of this magazine between Professor Ivic, Mehmet Hyseni, and Shkelzen Maliqi. (20)
On one hand, all this controversy and debate encouraged the Albanians to study more deeply the problem of their ethnic origin from the archaeological and ethnographic point of view, while it drove Serbian researchers to the point of denying the results of their own work. In 1982, when this problem had become an inflammatory one in what was then Yugoslavia, the Academy of Sciences in Albania organised a national conference on the formation of the Albanian people, their language, and culture. At this conference, which was attended by many foreign historians, many specialists tried to present all the evidence that their different academic disciplines could offer to solve the problem of Illyrian-Albanian continuity. (21)
As in reply to this conference, the Serbs had the idea of organising in Belgrade, under the auspices of the Serbian Academy of Arts and Sciences, a series of conferences that were to tackle problems also dealt with in Tirana. The conferences, that were attended solely by Serbian historians, took place in May and June 1986. Their papers were later published in a book, in Serbian and French editions. (22)
A careful reading of the contributions of Ms. F. Papazoglu and Professor M. Garasanin reveals at least a kind of uncertainty in their arguments. These writers sometimes even imply that they do not favour an unconditional rejection of the Illyrian theory of the Albanians’ ethnic origin.
Of course, writers of propaganda have paid no attention to the academic evidence, and have not grasped these authors’ doubts, but only the evidence that suit their anti-Albanian campaign. Aware of the simplification which the complicated problem of the Albanians’ ethnic origins had undergone, professor Garasanin was careful to point out that the Albanians are undoubtedly a palaeo-Balkan people and that the Illyrian element played a part, albeit a minor one, in their formation.
Garasanin asserted that there can be no question of a direct continuity between the Illyrians and the Albanians, because the Illyrians disappeared from history during the five centuries of Roman occupation. The Albanians are therefore a people who were formed in the middle ages from small remnants of peoples, including the Illyrians, who inhabited the western Balkans in classical and mediaeval times.
There is no need to continue. However, we would like to end by emphasising that the misrepresentations of the Serbian academic community in connection with the ethnic origin of the Albanians are part of a long and painful story of abuses of this kind, which have been nothing but political propaganda paving the way for military repression. This is the meaning of the way for military repression. This is the meaning of the campaign by Serbian historians and journalists against the autochthony of the Albanians in the lands they inhabit.
Re: Prof.Dr Aleksandër Stipçeviq
Posted: Thu Oct 25, 2012 10:22 pm
Fshati Arbanas afer Zares. Ku jetojen shqiptar(kroaci)