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To write about diaspora and to live in diversities

Lidija Dimkovska

Free-lance writer, poet, translator and essayist


I like the word diversity but I still have troubles with the word diaspora: for me, it is still a synonym for folklore, pathetic, and ghettos. Even if I have been living outside my native country for more than 20 years and I have never felt myself as part or a member of the Macedonian diaspora. My few attempts to get closer to the Macedonian diaspora, first in Romania, and later on in Slovenia,have been fiascos. In the course of all these years I realized that, in general, artists and intellectuals who do not depend on the diaspora’s recognition, interests, affiliations, activities, and help, do not really need to be part of it. I like living in diversities, my emigration was initially triggered by my cosmopolitan wish to be somewhere else, to feel the world as my home. Paradoxically, the meaning of home has become very relative as well as the notions of identity, language, homeland, citizenship, etc. The themes of migration, diaspora, nomadism, memories etc. have become themes in my writing and one of the central concerns in my life: in all my novels and in many of my poems I try to find answers to the issues of the Other and the Otherness, of migration and mobility and the nomadic way of life, etc. My own experience of an e/i/migrant and a nomad influences my writing but also my writing influences my e/i/migrant/nomadic way of life.

Keywords: diversity, diaspora, Otherness, identity, fatherland


Dr. Lidija Dimkovska was born in 1971 in Skopje, Macedonia. She is a poet, novelist, essayist, and translator. She studied Comparative Literature at the University of Skopje and took a PhD in Romanian Literature at the University of Bucharest, Romania where she worked as a lecturer of Macedonian language and literature at the Faculty of Foreign Languages and Literatures, University of Bucharest. Since 2001 she has been living in Ljubljana, Slovenia, as a free lance writer and translator of Romanian and Slovenian literature into Macedonian. She has published six collections of poetry, three novels and edited three anthologies. She received the Macedonian awards for best poetry debut and best book of prose for the first two novels, the Romanian awards for poetry Poesis and Tudor Arghezi, the German Prize for poetry Hubert Burda, the European Union Prize for Literature (2013) and this year the European Prize for Poetry "Peter Krdu”. Her books are translated in numerous languages. She has participated at numerous international literary festivals and was a writer-in-residence in Iowa, Berlin, Graz, Vienna, Salzburg, Split, and London.

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