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I’m an Old Commie!

Lungu, Dan, Blyth, Alistair Ian
Format: Paperback
Publisher: Dalkey Archive Press
Published: February 24, 2017
ISBN: 9781628971484
200 pages
Country of publication: United States


Emilia, a pensioner in northern Romania, is forced to confront the nostalgic illusions she nurtures as a reaction to the grim post-communist present when her daughter, now living in Canada, telephones urging her not to vote for the former communists in upcoming elections. Determined to discover in her own mind why ‘things were better back then,’ she explores her memories of growing up in an impoverished village and of her life as a factory worker in the town. But ironic tension grows as the reader glimpses between the lines how nothing was what it seemed in Ceaușescu’s Romania. Interspersed among Emilia’s memories are fantastical, hilarious anecdotes about the dictator, told by a factory foreman who will turn out to have been a secret police informer. I’m a Commie! is a subtle and humane novel about self-deception, but also about the ways in which a totalitarian state twisted ordinary lives.

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