Dogs & Others
Author: Biljana Jovanović
Translated by John K. Cox
The protagonist in Dogs and Others is the first openly lesbian character in modern Serbian literature, but she is also so much more than that, as she encapsulates the zeitgeist of her generation. Coming of age in 1970s Belgrade, then the capital city of thriving, socialist Yugoslavia, we follow Lida and the bohemian life she leads, made more complicated by the trials and tribulations of her eccentric family. The whole novel breathes with a raw sensibility so aptly captured in the voice of the heroine — a striking, rebellious, overtly feminist and somewhat neurotic young woman.
"While Dogs and Others is widely hailed as the first recorded sexual relationship between two women in Serbian literature, it may also be a pioneer in its time and country in the way it depicts mental health issues and their implications for prevailing views on gender differences."
Hannah Weber, Words Without Borders
"... the entire book is refracted through Lidia's hopeful, damaged personality, and as a portrait of stifled energies, and of old, patriarchal customs persisting in the supposedly equal new society, it's forceful, foul-mouthed and memorably aggressive."
Alex Johnston, The List
"The acerbic and unapologetic writing voice of Biljana Jovanović, even when translated, makes readers believe they have known the author personally for years. It was a big brave thing to be a female writer in Serbia in 20th century, but to be the first queer female writer was, and still is, worthy of magnificent respect."
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