The book of the Albanian pedagogue in London, Lea Ypi! A story between humor and the philosophy of freedom
In an interview with Ilva Taren in 'Euronews Albania' Lea Ypi showed that her book is half autobiographical novel, half philosophical essay, about freedom and what it means to be free and to have responsibility as an individual in the period of changing systems .
"The book is about a child who grows up in the late 80's in communist Albania, it is a kind of formation novel, the novel of growth, where the main character grows up, overcomes childhood and experiences adolescence, while the country where she lives also suffers the same transformation. So it is a child who seeks freedom in a country that is also seeking freedom. The book is about a very ordinary child who grows up in an extraordinary environment and realizes in childhood that these two worldviews were opposite. On the one hand the moral lessons in school and on the other hand the secret and censored conversations in the family. This is the traumatic passage the book talks about, of a child who, as a teenager, realizes that school and family are moving in opposite directions. While the state was experiencing the same trauma. I also remember a kind of collective confusion of the experience of the Albanian society ", says Lea Ypi.
Teacher Nora is an important character in the book, which as Lea says has been one of the sources of her formation.
"She was the teacher of moral education and she was the one who gave the basic concepts to orient in a socialist society while she had not yet reached communism, which was the utopia to which she had to go. My trauma was when I learned that the teacher had told me that I was living in a lie, that we were a free society. What we considered class enemies were the ones I lived with every day. Because of the censorship, my family was not openly told that we were being persecuted. "While I was being educated to become a good socialist citizen, my parents did nothing to prevent this."