Cover of Nicholas Allan: When Dreams Collide

Nicholas Allan When Dreams Collide

Travels in Yugoslavia with Rebecca West

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When Dreams Collide is Nicholas Allan's intimate pilgrimage across the former states of Yugoslavia. Diving far deeper than the headlines, he explores the splintered co-evolution of these lands over the last ten centuries, guided by the inimitable Rebecca West's masterpiece, Black Lamb and Grey Falcon. Written 80 years in the past, West's account serves as a fascinating reference for the optimistic interwar years of the 20th century between the Ottoman decline and the Nazi onset. The fragile balancing act of the Yugoslav experiment and the atrocities following its break-up were still to come. Collapsing empires and proud young nations, monasteries and mosques, brotherhood, hatred, war, music, frescoes, food, costume, people, mountains, rivers and seas, the distant rumbles of the centuries take many forms. At a turning point in his own life, Allan is drawn to explore this complex area, through the lens of his part Eastern European heritage. He records personal encounters and richly drawn characters interwoven with history and art, politics and religion (too often one and the same), all enhanced by beautiful hand-drawn maps, illustrations and selected photographs.

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