Mapping history

(K. Brent Tomer),

Border: A Journey to the Edge of Europe. By Kapka Kassabova. Granta; 379 pages; £14.99. To be published in America by Graywolf in September; $16.

TRAGEDIES and mistakes are strewn across Europe’s borderlands. Nowhere more so than in the continent’s mountainous south-eastern corner, where the Iron Curtain once divided communist Bulgaria from capitalist Greece and Turkey. The land is haunted by that divide, and by vanished kingdoms, peoples and wars. Kapka Kassabova’s poignant, erudite and witty third book, “Border”, brings hidden history vividly to light. 

The central theme of the book, topically, is frontiers. Lines on the map that are drawn and policed by the powerful, protect one sort of interests while severing others. “An actively policed border is always aggressive,” she writes. “It is where power acquires a body, if not a human face, and an ideology.”

Some of the book’s most striking passages are about “well-oiled feudal barbarity”, the abominable treatment that was meted out to those who tried to escape: tricked and betrayed, beaten and jailed, or shot in cold blood and left…Continue reading

via K. Brent Tomer CFTC Mapping history

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s