Picture On The Mantelpiece

By Pandora Petrovska

Picture on the Mantelpiece is a powerful autobiography of Stefo and Lena Duketovski from the Macedonian village of Trna. The book gives a Macedonian perspective on the Second World War and the Greek Civil War, and the consequences for ethnic Macedonians from Aegean Macedonia (northern Greece).

Married during the early days of the Second World War, Stefo is conscripted into the Greek army and later becomes a partisan. But caught up in the Macedonian Freedom Struggle during the Greek Civil War, they become separated from each other and their young family. Stefo and Lena each find themself on Mount Gramos during the heaviest bombing of the Civil War but without knowing the other is there.

The Contest For Macedonian Identity 1870-1912

After the War, with Stefo in the Republic of Macedonia and later Australia, Lena behind the Iron Curtain, and their two young boys scattered across Europe, they must begin the difficult task of finding each other and re-uniting their family.

Picture on the Mantelpiece is an oral history about war, migration, Macedonian village life in the early and mid 20th century, and the importance of family. It is well told and easy to read.

It is the second book by Macedonian Australian author, Pandora Petrovska, whose first book, Children of the Bird Goddess, was published by Pollitecon in 1998 and remains popular.

Picture on the Mantelpiece is the tenth Macedonian book published by Pollitecon. It is available in Australia for $18 including postage and GST. Overseas airmail is A$22.

Picture on the Mantelpiece, Paperback, 113 pages, 28 photographs and documents, 210 mm high x 148 mm wide, Four-colour celloglazed cover, ISBN 978-0-9804763-1-6.

Picture on the Mantelpiece

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