Universitatea „Alexandru Ioan Cuza“ din Iaşi, Facultatea de Litere ”Alexandru Ioan Cuza” University from Iassy, Faculty of Letters
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10 / 2009
Ion D. Sîrbu. The Man behind Letters
In the specific case of our country, the wholesale publication of diaries, correspondence, memoirs and different documents, shown up after 1989, met with the natural need of the public who wanted to find out the secret history the totalitarian censorship refused to bring forth for such a long time. Rarely the irrefragable value of these documents is doubled by a similar aesthetic value. There are few “professional” writers who had the inner strength to reject compromise, and correspondingly, to accept isolation and anonymity as facts. That is why, the so-called “pigeon-hole literature” proved to be, with few notable exceptions, pretty thick and unsubstantial. When the precious underground manuscripts of Ion D. Sirbu’s works were set into free circulation, the editing and printing event was synonym with the abolishment of censorship ban. The most important writing pieces are, in fact, the posthumous works, namely the diary, the correspondence and the novel Adio, Europa! (Farewell, Europe!). They might be taken both as an intellectual’s testimony, granted with his flawless behavior, and as a prose-wrighter’s fine expression, perhaps one of the most valuable in Romanian post-war literature. As a philosopher, Lucian Blaga and Liviu Rusu’s disciple, member of the Sibiu Literary Circle, Sîrbu has been seduced by Marxism, cherishing socialist ideals (just like Solzhenitsyn, Kolakovsky did etc.). Yet, becoming aware of the results of the Marxist utopia, being imprisoned for a long time, bearing the forced-residence, having his manuscripts confiscated and melted, being forbidden to publish, Ion D. Sîrbu gave up the ideals of his youth by radically criticizing the Marxism and the Marxist-Leninist dialectics. There is an extended area of Marxism and its variations in Farewell, Europe!, of ideas’ debate which grant the philosophical nature of the novel. The author denounces and discloses, in a lucid manner, the stupidity and the insanity of the political leaders, their duplicity, their lies and the newspeak, the whole net of unbelievable atrocities. And yet, I D. Sirbu’s work is still cast out by the Romanian writers. His particularly drawn back by the loss of interest for the chosen topics. But, although history goes on the totalitarianism will always represent the biggest temptation of the human being, even though it proved self-destructive (as Jean Francois Revel asserted). That is why, like Solzhenitzyn, Pasternak, Orwell, Kundera, Sirbu should always be regarded a nowadays writer in order that the facts already happened must not happen again.
Keywords: Censorship, ironic dialogue, allusion, subversion, Marxism, utopia, friendship cult, politic literature, imaginary letters, confession, intimate space/private space
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