Articles by Marjola Rukaj

Eugenia Maximova: Balkan kitchens and other visions

23/01/2014 -  Marjola Rukaj

Eugenia Maximova has entered hundreds of houses in the Balkans, asking only one thing: show me the kitchen

Albania rejected, resoundingly

16/01/2014 -  Marjola Rukaj

The EU Council denied candidate status to Albania in December 2013. Some analysts think the rejection could be good for Albania

Albania, Belle Air stops flights

11/12/2013 -  Marjola Rukaj

It had virtually become the Albanian flagship carrier. But now its planes no longer fly. Behind a still confused story there are years of unpaid taxes and owners very close to former Prime Minister Sali Berisha

Albanians and Serbs: a common epic

31/05/2013 -  Marjola Rukaj

Epic songs of the Balkans have often been key in the construction of controversial nationalist ideas. In fact, they sing a common history

Kosovo: my son Tonibler

06/05/2013 -  Marjola Rukaj

For ten years Alban Muja of Kosovo has been doing research into the names of towns, places and people; at the moment he has an exhibition in the centre of Tirana in a small gallery called “the fly”

Who owns Albania's media?

18/03/2013 -  Marjola Rukaj

Being a journalist in Albania is a difficult job. So tells us Axel Kronholm, a Finnish journalist who devoted his dissertation to press freedom in the country

Albania: the nationalist revival

04/02/2013 -  Marjola Rukaj

For the first time in the recent history of Albania, extreme nationalism has political representation: the Red and Black Alliance. An interview with anthropologist Armanda Kodra

Elbasan, the polluted city

08/11/2012 -  Marjola Rukaj

The Chinese built it, the collapse of the Berlin Wall marked its end. The huge metallurgical plant in Elbasan still looms on those who live nearby. A report from Albania's most polluted city

Albania: the boom of private schools

02/10/2012 -  Marjola Rukaj

Private schools of all levels have flourished over the last ten years. A report about a failing public system, teachers struggling with the laws of the free market, and families struggling with their wallets

Albania: if the Kanun degenerates

03/08/2012 -  Marjola Rukaj

In the north there are frequent cases of blood revenge. Killings occur in the name of the Kanun, the traditional law, which in fact is not observed. And women are targets too. Marjola Rukaj explains why the Kanun, tradition, and Lek Dukagjini are not the main causes of the problem, but its symptoms

Albania: return to virginity

14/03/2012 -  Marjola Rukaj

A phenomenon that has exploded in the last 20 years. In Albania an increasing number of women undergoes surgery in order to regain virginity. For marriage. A report

Albania: orphans for life

16/02/2012 -  Marjola Rukaj

There are thousands of orphans in Albania. At the age of 14 they are expelled from orphanages by law, and often have no alternative to crowded dorms where, in poverty and without prospects, they remain for most of their life. A report

Selective abortion in Albania

27/01/2012 -  Marjola Rukaj

If it's a male, all is well. If it's a female, there's a dilemma. In Albania selective abortion is a widespread practice. According to the Council of Europe, in Albania for every 100 females 112 males are born: a rather disproportionate figure compared with the ratio of natural demographic growth. A report from the clinics in Tirana

Baščaršija, the beauty

28/10/2011 -  Marjola Rukaj

The ancient Ottoman market is one of the symbols of Sarajevo. This article concludes our series on Balkan bazaars.

Novi Pazar, the bazaar without lipstick

20/10/2011 -  Marjola Rukaj Novi Pazar

It is very similar to the Ottoman-style quarter in Sarajevo, though many consider it more genuine, the čaršija from which Novi Pazar in south-eastern Serbia gets its name. Our feature

Mostar: the čaršija and the bridge

12/10/2011 -  Marjola Rukaj Mostar

A divided town, a bridge, a čaršija on each side. Symbols of meeting and congregation which now have to deal with the legacy of the war. The challenge of Mostar between tourism and tradition

Skopje, the bastard city

09/09/2011 -  Marjola Rukaj

Skopje, the capital of Macedonia, is a divided city but it retains a 'bastard' soul. Katharina Urbanek and Milan Mijalkovic have dedicated a book to it, looking into the meaning of the deep transformations - spatial and symbolic - that the city is currently undergoing with the controversial "Skopje 2014" plan. Our interview

Belgrade, the lost carshija

21/07/2011 -  Marjola Rukaj Belgrade

Belgrade is a city which has changed radically over the last two centuries. But, behind the town's façade, which mixes Mittel European and Socialist styles, it has not completely lost its Ottoman elements. There are no more bazaars but their spirit lives on.

The secret languages of the Bazaars

07/06/2011 -  Marjola Rukaj Tirana

They were multilingual places where secret languages were spoken. What has remained in the Balkan Bazaars of these codes, invented in order to understand each other and yet not be understood by outsiders? Our analysis

Belgrade and Pristina off the beaten tracks

06/06/2011 -  Marjola Rukaj Belgrade

Belgrade goes to Pristina and Pristina goes to Belgrade free of cold diplomatic formalities and extenuating negotiations. No political misunderstandings, no definitions: here is how two young photographers from the two cities achieved this goal