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Dejan Stojanovic

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Dejan Stojanović (born 11 March 1959) is a Serbian-American poet, writer, essayist, philosopher, businessman, and former journalist. His poetry is characterized by a recognizable system of thought and poetic devices, bordering on philosophy, and, overall, it has a highly reflective tone. According to the critic Petar V. Arbutina, “Stojanović belongs to the small and autochthonous circle of poets who have been the main creative and artistic force of the Serbian poetry in the last several decades."

Stojanović’s poetry collections are characterized by sequences of compact, dense poems, simple yet complex in carefully organized overall structure, and that is why some more visibly than others appear as long poems. This is especially characteristic of the books, "The Sign and its Children," "The Shape," and "The Creator" ("Znak I njegova deca," Oblik," "Tvoritelj"), in which, with a relatively small number of words repeated in different contexts, Stojanović built his own poetic cosmogony. For that reason, writer and critic, David Kecman, described him as a cosmosophist. In his poems, he covers the smallest and the largest topics with equal attention, often juxtaposing them to the level of paradox and absurdity, gradually building new perspectives and meanings that are not only poetic either in origin or in purpose. Some themes and preoccupations, be they stones or galaxies, are present in all of his books, and it can be said that his poetry books are, in themselves, long poems and that all of them serve as ingredients of a hyper-poetry book that is still in the making. He used many poetic forms never used before in Serbian poetry and also created some new forms. “If elegance is represented by simplicity, then these are some of the most elegant verses imaginable," Branko Mikasinovich stated.

In early 1990, Stojanović started writing for the first opposition magazine in Serbia, "Pogledi" ("Views"). He interviewed many prominent Serbian writers in Belgrade, e.g., Momo Kapor, Alek Vukadinović, and Nikola Milošević. During his second visit to Paris in May and June 1990, he interviewed several internationally-recognized artists, e.g., Ljuba Popović, Petar Omčikus, and Miloš Šobajić, who were of Serbian origin, as well as some French intellectuals, e.g., Jacques Claude Villard. In December 1990, he went to the U.S. as a foreign correspondent, planning to stay six months to a year. The goal was to conduct interviews with some important literary figures and then return to Yugoslavia. He accomplished this goal, although not fully, because the war started in the former Yugoslavia in the middle of 1991. He received the prestigious "Rastko Petrović" Award from the Society of Serbian Writers for his book of interviews from 1990 to 1992 in Europe and Americas, entitled Conversations, which included interviews with several major American writers, including Nobel Laureate Saul Bellow, Charles Simic, and Steve Tesich.

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