Naive Literature: The War Memories of Dumitru Nistor, An Austro-Hungarian Soldier from Transylvania


  • Ioana Bot Babes-Bolyai University


WWI, Dumitru Nistor, Leo Spitzer, literary expressivity, naïve literature, memories, Central Europe


An exemplary text of “naive” literature, Nistor’s “diary” is an extraordinary book, which I intend to study from a perspective close to Leo Spitzer’s investigation into the birth of literature and the expressivity of language in the written testimonies (letters, memoirs) of the prisoners of war. In the discovery of distant and unknown worlds Nistor is moved by a great curiosity; at the same time, he continues to make comparisons with his world, the familiar world which he is very nostalgic for and which he does not want to forget. How does he, a barely literate peasant from Năsăud, parallel worlds so distant and unknown with the familiar one, the one he left at home? What links does he discover between these foreign spaces and his Transylvanian world?





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