Beer Kingdom
Part 3Belgrade School of Life
Once more life was beautiful: all a creative person had to do was imagine a work of art, and the work in it original form would be put into circulation, without any censorship, editorial intervention, or problems with execution and uninspired collaborators! Members of the Belgrade School went to work "producing" tons of fiction, essays, and experimental work, with some unavoidable memoirs and travelogues. There was also plenty of "really dangerous political writing," all of it left to the famous northerly koshawa wind to take it up and down the Danube river in search of an eager recipient.
As for the "people's masses", they were deprived of the unexecuted masterpieces and rightly so: the father of modernism himself wrote AN ENEMY OF THE PEOPLE to prove the majority is never right. Hesse, on the other hand, wrote that exceptional souls recognize each other and have ways of communicating with each other beyond mere language. And Colin Wilson, regarded by many in Belgrade as a distant and not so successful of Koestler, explains that only some five percent of our planet's populace are independent thinkers, capable of leading others and having broader views.
Like every movement, the Belgrade School of Life had its traitors and those who took its teachings in a less orthodox way and tried to make compromises. But the hard core nucleus of the movement dealt harshly with these heretics: they were not allowed to join the common table at the better Belgrade bars and clubs or, if allowed into the circle thanks to their ability to buy a round or two of drinks, they were not allowed to contribute significantly to the discussions. Upon entering a Belgrade bar, it is usually easy to figure out which table belongs to the members of the School; the noise that emanates from the group is the sign of every writer's eternal dilemma: whether to live or to write: to devote more time to writing or to living one' life to the fullest.

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As the author is all for anonymity, we'll respect his wishes to stay unknown and omit his name from this text. However, the above article appeared in Volume 17 #2 of the San Francisco Review of Books, for Fall 1992. The author of TRUE WEST and some other plays is on the cover, dressed as a cowboy.
Copyright 1996 Bahus Enterprises