The first writings on literature Ibrahim Rugova began with poetry, as all writers do, when they begin to deal with literature. He published about twenty poems, which were at the level of the poems that were published at that time. But soon he abandoned that genre and he devoted to the study of literature, literary criticism mostly. Even early in his first compilation of writings in this area, in the “lyrical touch” at 1971, he showed an inclination towards western advanced literature by avoiding the socialist realism, which had included a part of literature the so-called socialist camp whose territory belonged to Albania and Kosovo as part of Yugoslavia at that time.
Lets add that the proceedings of this book were first published in the temporary ”word” newspaper with the superscript “Literary zeniths”, where his orientation was seen to deal with roofs of literature, mainly with the universal one. In this context, we should also overview the efforts of the creator to be released from the dogma of socialist realism that had gripped the literature that was created at that time, particularly the one that was created in Albania and that somehow influenced the literary creativity created into territories of former Yugoslavia, where Albanians lived and acted. It has been said and written that Ibrahim Rugova was among the first who opposed this direction of literary qith his writings published in newspapers of that time. Actually since in the writings of his book he was warning his orienting that aimed the roofs of literature world, the most progressive part of this literature. This orientation of his would be perfected after his several months residence in Paris, France. One could freely say that his creativity was linked to the modernity in Albanian culture, with modernity of scientific and literary criticism, not only of that created in the territories of former Yugoslavia, where Albanians lived, but in all the world lands, where Albanian language is spoke and written. In this way, his works became lighthouse that illuminate different aspects of literature, overviewed from different aspects that until then had not been cultivated in Albanian letters.
In the meantime Ibrahim Rugova also published other books: “Towards Theory” – 1972, “The strategy of understanding” – 1980, “The book of Bogdan 1675-1685″ - 1982, ” Directions and premises of Albanian literary criticism 1504-1983″ -1983, “Aesthetic rejection” – 1987, and is co-author of two other books “Literary Criticism” (together with Sabri Hamiti) – 1979, and also “Bibliography of Albanian literary criticism, ’44-’74″ (together with Isak Shema) – 1976.
“Faik Konica” the publishing house of Pristine published the set of his books to prove the indisputable values which this creativity possesses and that have not lost actuality even today. In all these books it is easily noticed his keenness to seize things, to explore with rare skill and ability that raises issues in these works. In all these books is apparent his trend to better illuminate issues that writes, by sticking to its primary orientation, to analyze the book in the aspects of art and its role in the development of knowledge. Ibrahim Rugova has made selecting and preparing for the release of selected poems by contemporary poets, as Din Mehmeti, Ali Podrimja, Bekir Musliu etc, which accompanied with introductions, which in reality are concise analysis of the value of these books.
Two are the most precious books of this creator, which seems to be the masterpieces of Ibrahim Rugova and those are “Bogdani’s book 1675-1685” and ”Directions and premises of Albanian literary criticism 1504-1983″. While at first he deals with the study of the work of this versatile humanist and writer, in the second Rugova will deal with the ways of development of literary criticism in Albanian literature. In his critic opinion for the art of the written word in Albanian literature is very early, it even begins with the presentation of the first writings of Albanian writers. Thus, for example, he wrote the following lines:” Also in the line of humanity we have the poet and philosopher Mikel Maruli (1453-1500), who wrote poetry in the spirit of the elegies of Katuli and made the poetic interpretation of world according to Lukreci. In 1497 he published two popular books “quip” and “hymns of nature”, and left in manuscript the book “On the princely education.” In doing so he prove his commitment to track and find elements of critical thinking to literary works, even in other countries and among other peoples, which were published earlier.
In the continuation of this study Ibrahim Rugova would focus on assessments that are given to literature and literary books on different times and spaces. An important place in his work takes the critical opinion of Renaissance writers and the important contribution of this period, who had published numerous works in poetry, prose or even other genres of artistic creativity, but they had given assessments of published works, among whom he mentions Jeronim De Rada, then Faik Konica, which list the among the most valued critics in the aesthetic thought in Albanian letters, which in his writing “The timeline Albanian letters” testifying a higher awareness of the need for Albanian literary criticism, as part of the literature, which also helps in its development. We can freely say that Faik Konica is valued as one of the most astute critics and one of those who helped in the development of critical thought in Albanian literature.
In this sequence should also be mention many other contemporaries of Konica, among whom we are mentioning Fan S. Nolin, who accompanied by introductions translated books from different languages into Albanian, hence his calls his criticism introduction criticism. No doubt that these interpretations are Noli’s precious treasure in the development and growth of critical and aesthetic thought in Albanian letters.
However the consolidation of Albanian literary criticism starts quite late. It begins to develop and cultivate after the start of the publication of many literary magazines in Albanian, whether in Albania or in the Diaspora. In these newspapers and magazines many dams begin to publish their writings that would later become known, thus helping cultivate literary criticism as an integral part of literature. This happens in the ’20s and ’30s of the last century when the magazines “Boyhood”, ” New Albania”, ”Minerva”, ” Illyria”, ” Light Star”etc begn to publish. At their sites will find writings of Eqrem Çabej, Justin Rrota, Mitrush Kuteli, Krist Maloki, but also those of Dhimiter Shuteriqi, Gjergj Fishta and many famous names of Albanian literature. A good part of the Ibrahim Rugova’s study is devoted to contemporary criticism, separately what was created in Albania and separately what was created in Kosovo, namely in the former Yugoslavia. The author of the work under review has brought depth analysis of orientations and values of contemporary critics, whether their published works in the press of Albania or Kosovo, together with their orientations in this field of creativity.
Ibrahim Rugova has followed its work with scientific apparatus, citing footnotes for the used sources, as well as he acted with the count of the utilized literature, historical index of terms, index of names and similar. In two other books, one he has published collections of poetry list with brief assessment of each separately, and on the other, to the latest “Aesthetic rejection” where he counted novels published since 1949 until 1986, just a year before the publication of the book in question. All of which makes his work with high values not only aesthetic, but also scientific.
Albanian and European middle Ages
The study of Ibrahim Rugova, “Bogdani’s book”, where are integrally studied the works of one of the biggest creators of Albanian Middle Ages, Pjeter Bogdani, he is part of those cultural achievements in general, particularly scientific, that among others, inspire respect for the object of study. The man of our time, of this rush and confusion as it has no time to deal with cultural heritage, scientific, philosophical and literary of ancestors. This may be the consequence of our mentality that allegedly everything starts with us or at least reached the enviable development with us. Thus, viewed from this angle, Ibrahim Rugova study opens new windows of knowledge, and thus points out the dark centuries, especially the Middle Ages, where as factuality, is not known for all the treasure of our spiritual heritage. Further, “Bogdani’s Book” removes, among other things, the disposal of heritage cheesecloth, which is a source of the right recognition towards the present, which makes it possible to find ways for prospects of future. The study of Ibrahim Rugova adamantly insists on this issue.
Issues that he has made efforts to raise in interest level and interpretation, to analyze and to solve are major issues that arise before the researchers, and at the same time are part of our spiritual heritage, but also spiritual good things, in the fond of cultural achievements in Europe. Dealing with the work of Pjeter Bogdani, the author of the study a major has investigated its great values in different fields of knowledge, in different plans of knowledge and different plans of achievements of the human mind. Bogdani’s book “Cuneus Prophetarum”, published for the first time in 1685, in Padua, in the Cardinal Barbarigos printing, is the best evidence of the development of art, science and philosophy in the middle age Albanian. Seeing this issue, the author has investigated the forerunners Albanian and European predecessors, to create links of continuity of this development. In the European plan this development is a contemporary of elevated minds of Descartes, Malebranche, Spinoza, Pascal. In the national development plan, it is the brainchild of achievements and efforts of Barleti, Buzuku, Budi and Bardhi.
In the study “Bogdani’s book” is followed a scientific methodology, which was limited by the scope of the study. Multiple historic-graphical data offered to readers today, it may seem that they burden the study, but it is necessary for works of height, because only in this way can be achieved the potential continuity between the offered level to the facility, which is examined in the level of achievement of scientific opinion at the present time.
The study “Bogdani’s book”, pull “annexes”, is divided into two parts. In the first part the author has dealt with the genesis of the book, while in the second part with the analytics of the book of Pjeter Bogdani. These main divisions are followed with numerous subsequent subdivisions, highlighting numerous issues of the book’s plans. The first part are addressed issues that are conditional on the arduous road to the creation of first original national book “Cuneus Prophetarum”. The author of the study has had to deal with the issues of the definition of old Albanian literature, this means with problems of systematization of literature. Furthermore, with the classification of genres and forms that are developed within the old literature, the biography of the author, whose work is the subject of study. To investigate his time, social and cultural circumstances of the time, is also dealed with other sides, outside side of the book nature, to complete this way not only scientific curiosity, but also the demand of cultural opinion of our time. Because, as Shakespeare said, that the author has quoted, “lets get back to the old (antiquity) because it will be progress.”
Below the author has given the six publications that had Bogdani’s books starting from 1685 until 1977. Until today we know that not many people have tried to study the book of Bogdani, even though the book has not ceased to be the subject of different interests since its publishing, in 1685, to the present day. Special book known until today about Bogdani and his work is that of Matteto Sciambra titled “Bogdanica” II, published in Bologna in 1965, which provided many new documents for Bogdani, and analyzes the linguistic and philosophical aspects of the book the Bogdani. However, as the object of various interests, Bogdani’s book was always in the spotlight. According to the author of the study “Bogdani’s book”, among many researchers some of them may be singled out: Mark Harapi, who transcribes and annotates the first part of Cunesit, which publishes in Shkodra in 1940-43. Should mention the contribution of proff.Alberto Sratogonit, Anton Santori, Zef Jubani, Sami Frasheri, Faik Konica, Gaetano Potrotta, Eqrem Çabej, Justin Rrota, Injac Zamputit, the Serbian researchers Radoniq, where is interesting the picture about Bogdani and his family. The study of Jovan Radoniq, most likely, is a result of the controversy that he had with Chedomir Mijatoviqi about the origin of Bogdani and his family, which Mijatoviqi attpempted to proclaim with Serbian origin.
In the second part are addressed issues that emanate from the structure of the book. This structure, as it comes from the study of Ibrahim Rugova, departs with the outside and formal organization of the book “Cuneus Prophetarum” (The Band of the Prophets) that resembles the organization of a library, going till the spearation in scales and circles, to interpret, analyze and evaluate then the book of Bogdani.
To investigate all these aspects of the values of Pjeter Bogdani’s book, the author has determined rightly the extension within the time context, when it is created. This context has two directions: European Middle Ages and national tradition. Obviously, comparative plan was inevitable, because he has made it possible to be understood right, and not just the issue of creation of the book, but also the scientific, philosophical and artistic level. These and other issues, analyzed and interpreted with knowledge of Ibrahim Rugova, make his study among those works that put the fundamentals bases of the study of our spiritual heritage. While exploring the stratification of the book values, the author has dealt with issues of aesthetics and poetry, rhetoric and semiotics, the semantics and poetics, rhetoric and semiotics, semantics and ethics. All these are associated with arguments supported, primarily in resource values that offered Bogdani’s work.
In the tradition of writing and publication of the Middle Ages, it is known that within the publishing of different nature have been introduced the poetry writings too. The author of the study call the poetry that is published in Cuneus, poetic practice. In this context, the author talked about the style, the figures, and the entirety of the work for the types of discourse which, according to him, are two: scientific discourse and artistic discourse. These and other plans observed in the work of Pjeter Bogdani made possible the unfolding of different angles of values that have conditioned its revival from the Middle Ages to the present day. The author of the study, convinced that he hasn’t touched all the contexts of Ceneus, brings an essay at the end. With this book, the author has attempted to review the creative presence of Bogdani’s book in the subsequent creativity of our artist. This interest starts with De Rada and Naim and continues with Nol and Lasgush, coming up in the late days, with Sabri Hamiti and others. Although this presence he calls as a job that should be investigated, comes out tha fact that the greatness of the Bogdani’s book, with its presence wasn’t fictitious but creative.
(Published in the book of the author Engjël lKoliqi “Dr.Ibrahim Rugova architect of The New Dardania-Republic of Kosovo”, Publisher “Rugova Art”, Pristina, May 2011, pg.55 to pg. 60).