If Boris Pahor did not know today, even after 108 years, that would be the case. The hope of egalitarian coexistence. .
India is the second most populous country in the world and the third largest in the world in terms of English books. But because of this the Indians do not know who the author is, so he is young. One such author is Boris Pahor, who wrote the original text in Slovenian and translated it into English and other European languages. He may not be known in India, but he has never appeared in BBC shorts interviewed by German and French media and there has been a flurry of book sales for his book in Italy. Paid by the heads of government of both countries. Tribute to him. Yet they remained strangers to us. Born in 1913, Boris Pahor has suffered many blows in the last century and left many scars in history. Not only did he endure the test, Pahor tried to defend himself. Continued the struggle through writings. With whom is this conflict? It was decided then and there for what. Boris lived during the Pahor period.
So you have to look at their character to know how you lived. But just as the world changed after World War II, so did Boris’ life after 1946. His ancestor was eventually persecuted by Hitler. He was born in Trieste, a picturesque town on the Mediterranean coast. The city is in Italy today, but only ten to eleven kilometers from the Slovenian border. Famous for its ports, the city was part of the Austrian Empire until the end of World War I (1918). The diversity here is the same as in any other port city. Slovenes, Italians and other Atrapagad people. At the age of seven, Boris looked after the family. The city was captured by Italian fascists, deported by the Austrian rulers, and Boris’ father, still a government employee, began living as a street vendor. The nationalist rhetoric of the fascists who considered Italy a holy land then began. So in the 1920s, when Mussolini’s terror reached its climax, Boris Pahor had to join the fascist army. But because he did not want to work, he started studying at a church in Slovenia now. In the meantime, the church taught him paramedics. Until 1938, he continued to study in one way or another. But finally, from 1940, he had to work for the Italian fascist army. During the fall of Mussolini in 1943, Hitler’s Nazis captured Boris as a prisoner in Yugoslavia and first sent him here and there in a show of torture. Prisoners in these concentration camps were used for quick repairs to roads and bridges that were destroyed during the war. Boris’ role in the medical team that kept the prisoners and workers in good condition saved him from death, but he had to watch the deaths of others. The war ended, and Boris returned alive, but he contracted tuberculosis and fled to Paris.
Here began his second life. While in Paris, he fell in love with a nurse. Until then, the United States, Britain, France, and Russia had changed the course of Europe. The ‘Empire of Yugoslavia’ is now independent Yugoslavia. The ‘Parisian’ nurse rejected the offer to go to the Slovenian-dominated area and stay there. Boris returned to the Slovenian-speaking province, where he found a new way to live. He started a magazine in Slovenia, where he found a partner. In 1952, at the age of 39, he married. The following year, however, Tito declared himself president of Yugoslavia and Boris persuaded it to be a “monopoly here”. After leaving Yugoslavia, he returned to his hometown of Trieste. Evanna Triste’s ‘Italianization’ is almost complete, although there are Slovenian speakers who now have minority status instead of violence. It was here that he wrote the autobiographical novel Necropolis, now part of the Cosmos. It was published in 1967. She also visited Yugoslavia, where she was welcomed by Slovenian speakers. But by the time it was translated, it had reached the world in the early 1990s.
‘Necropolis’ and later ..
There is a very detailed account of the 15 months spent under Hitlerite persecution in the Necropolis, but this writing is like telling a story. The protagonist is the narrator, and like Boris, he is on the harassment medical team. Staying there and watching the game of human emotions between life and death. He was surrounded by labor prisoners who insisted on pretending to be ‘sick’ to escape work, on the other hand, realizing that their departure was ‘inappropriate’ leading directly to the corpse. But other Nazis also suspect he is helping them. Enemy prisoners! The protagonist is finally released from such a strange situation, but does it change the hellish situation? – The long answer to this question, Boris is always looking for a ‘bonus’ in the future. That is why they continue to see injustice and speak out against it. Stalin not only spoke out against injustices, but also adopted anti-communist rhetoric, he wrote against the greatness of the capitalist system, gave speeches, and even gave interviews.
Now the news of his death is telling, he continues to work primarily for the recognition of Slovenian speakers, but not only for “us and our people”. At the time, Boris may have thought of doing something similar to what the Italian fascists did. When the Italian fascists captured part of the city of Trieste from Italy. But that did not happen. That is not what is happening. Because Boris saw ‘Yachi Dehi Yachi Dola’ as a demonstration of Mussolini, Hitler, Stalin, Tito and these so-called extremist nationalists and their followers. Coexistence is important, it is important to have a sense of equality .. It is wrong to determine the priority of any society based on numerical strength, all these lessons they have been following since time immemorial. He also writes books based on it. At some point, he filed and campaigned for the Slovenian party in the Italian provincial elections, but that was all. Some MLAs did not after that. His speeches were like literature rather than politicians.
Boris Pohor’s next novels are A Difficult Spring, Observation and In the Labyrinth. It must be said that the first and third of these are the same stream, because on both sides comes the character of a distant lover. In ‘A Difficult Spring’ the girlfriend meets the protagonist in Paris, in ‘In the Labyrinth’ the memories of the protagonist living in the city of Trieste, and the corresponding correspondence with her remain. The situation of ex-prisoners falls into a difficult spring at the end of World War II. It is also important because of the detailed descriptions of the novel. But in the last ‘In the Labyrinth’ Boris also portrayed the state of Europe beyond himself. The protagonist’s girlfriend gets married in Paris, falls in love with the world, but her fianc does not like her wholeheartedly, and the world goes against her will. It also tells you how to live with Italian speakers. An Italian translation of the book was readily available, which caused a stir with Boris Pahor on Italian television and led to interviews.
At this point, Boris never gave up hope on equal coexistence. That is why the impact of his book is positive. Shortly after the coronation, the presidents of Italy and Slovenia met in July 2020 and confronted each other at a massacre in Trieste in 1920 – holding hands and expressing their grief over the massacre that the Slovenes had to endure. They both mourned the death of Parva Boris Pahor.
Boris Pahor is one of the most memorable writers. It is natural to have some curiosity about him as he has lived for 108 years, but as a minority – yet with a passion for life and creativity – Boris Pahor was one of those who thought ‘this number is not how many years’. How you live is important. From the twentieth century to the present he has lived not only as a silent witness but also as a fighting witness!