AN ALBANIAN JOURNAL

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White Pine, Fredonia, NY, 1997, 1st pr.  ISBN 1-877727-76-8.  Trade soft cover, 115+ pages including References.  Unread copy; tiny age spot one fore-edge.  ‘Noted author Edmund Keeley kept this record of his journey of discovery with a group of American writers traveling under the auspices of the United States Information Agency to Greece and Albania.  The journey takes the writers from Tirana to Elbasan and from there to towns farther south, including Fier, near the ancient site of Apollonia, and Vlora (Avlona) near the sea and the Greek Orthodox monastery of Ardenitsa.  During their travels they learn much about the terrible fifty years of physical and spiritual drought brought on by the Stalinist regime of Enver Hoxha and see the first faltering steps that Albania has begun to take toward a more democratic form of government and a more productive market economy.  But what the group finds most satisfying – and what here is described in sometimes lyrical and humorous detail – are the meetings with the more humble city dwellers and rural farms that they encounter in their travels, along with the unspoiled landscape outside the undernourished, depressed cities and towns.’ (from rear wrap)

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