Jump to: navigation, search

Biljana Doj?inovi?

Self-promoting writing as networking strategy: Jelica Belovi? Bernadžikovska


In my presentation I will try to answer a number of questions about the position of a woman author in the patriarchal society of Serbia at the beginning of the 20th century: the meaning of public sphere for women, the importance of self-awareness; understanding of the mechanisms important for presenting one’s self as a public figure; the notion of women as production, reception and interpretative community – all of them presented by a woman author herself.

I will focus on two types of texts by Jelica Belovi? Bernadžikovska in which she supported the creation of female reception networks. The first type of texts are more theoretical, the representative one being her introduction to the 1913 almanach Srpkinja in which she had asked many questions similar to those Virginia Woolf asked 16 years later in her essays A Room of One`s Own and Women and Fiction. Among these important issues were women’s production and reception networks, the need for a community of women writers and readers and the hardships in creating it. The second type of texts present, in a way, a practical answer to these questions. Jelica Belovi? Bernadžikovka was writing about other contemporary women writers and these texts vary from portraits of authors (in 1913 Srpkinja) to the reviews of particular works.

The most interesting part of this latter group are those texts or parts of texts in which Jelica Belovi? Bernadžikovska introduces, discusses and promotes the reception of her own work(s). For instance, her monography on Serbian embroidery, published in 1906, is full of remarks and data on her previous achievements and works which she considered not appreciated enough. Five years after this book was published, Jelica Belovi? Bernadžikovska wrote a text which focused on the reception of both her monography, as well as her research on textile art of Serbian women. Both textile art and her collecting work were percieved as lesser, unimportant in comparison to male art, by some male contemporaries. Belovi?-Bernadžikovska strongly opposed such opinions and theorized the craft, and at the same time was trying to establish a receptive and sensitized auditorium for her own and other women's works.

AsK, September 2012

Personal tools