Kosova as a new country, abusive relationships and equal rights.

man-abusing-woman Prishtina, Kosova. Autumn 2015 Kosova is a new country in southeastern Europe. Not much special about it, Kosova used to be a part of Albania however it politically gained independence from Serbia on the 17th of February 2008. Quite tiny, partially recognized and in the center of the Balkan Peninsula it is mainly known as a war-torn country. Sure, we Kosovars hear visitors point out or complain of the damaged and inadequate roads, flickering electricity at times, corruption and don’t get me started on the staggering amounts of Kosovars and Albanians who migrate. One in four Kosovars live abroad and in two recent months alone, 50,000 Kosovars have migrated to Hungary through Serbia hoping for a  better tomorrow. Over 100,000 since August 2014. That’s a lot. However I, alike many other Kosovars and visitors galore will argue that our country’s beauty lies in the people. The kind and modest Kosovars, with the best and quite cheap I might add, macchiato in the world. The trustworthy nationality with the purest of respect for other cultures. The people whose entire tradition in built upon: “mirepritje” (welcoming) and “besa” (giving your word to someone) gives us a homely vibe, no? Ever since the war, cities other than Prishtina barely have any job openings, decent schools or decent…anything. It’s true that ever since then Kosova has witnessed a staggering amount of people moving to Prishtine after this war, in search of ways to make a living. In this new and scrawny country, do the citizens of this capital city live up to all it used to. Or has tradition been lost and the a new bubble-forming, hypocrite society emerged? In these following lines I’d like to expand on a particularly disturbing aspect of this. One day after some really mental weather it had finally calmed down and the small city was blatantly thrilled. The sky was crystal clear and the sun was out for the first time in weeks. As I sat in the bench between the  state university and public library I couldn’t help but grin in delight at the soaking rays of sunshine upon my skin. I was quietly reading my Edgar Allan Poe book which had my full concentration at the moment. My only worry at the time was who was behind the murder at the Rue Morgue. However before I could find out my attention was quickly seized by a young woman’s loud voice. I turned around to see a middle-aged man and a younger woman, possibly a student, having an argument. I decide to mind my own business. “Just another couple having one of those days” I think. But is it? No, that’s quickly scribbled out as a possibility. The argument transitions. They come closer to each other as they glind and clench their teeth. I try not to stare. He grabs her wrist, brings her closer and whispers something in her ear which makes her grow angry and flustered. She’s oozing seemingly built up anger and it’s quite obvious. He then proceeds to whisper another few lines and she slaps him immediately. “Maybe it’s not an abusive relationship” I think. “Maybe they just both have anger issues, I can’t make out that she’s a saint”. She then blurts out: “If we get a divorce my father will kill us both, are you crazy?!” He makes an imminent glare and slaps her twice. She starts to curl up in a standing up fetus position. Attempts to vomit but either stops herself or can’t. I quiver. He stands up and stares at her. Keeps it up for a couple of seconds. Then he leaves. Just like that. Walks away slowly. She wipes her tears and bites her tongue. As she sees him leave with his back turned she starts to follow. Like a fruit fly following a lightbulb. A horrible sight to behold. A man beside me starts to follow them to sort this out. He somehow convinces me to not call the police. He says they won’t take me seriously as a child but his voice will be heard. I understand that and put my phone back in my pocket. He dials the number and starts walking in their direction. While anyone, even an ignorant past me would think that this situation could be averted by the woman simply breaking up with the man. But most of us ‘s know it’s never that simple. Putting on my detective cap and applying my knowledge of stereotypical/traditional Albanian Kosovar families, my shrewd capabilities take me to but one conclusion. Fathers in traditional homes usually split their resources, land or whatever it is they have only amongst their sons. The daughters get nothing as they will marry someone and go live off his belongings. When the daughter does marry someone, likely someone with the same sexist mentality, she will, by default, be at her husband’s mercy. They’re not equal because everything belongs to him. Yes he could be nice and a total Prince Charming but what are the chances of that happening? She is lucky to have found someone who can support her so she can’t really leave at will unless she wants to end up homeless. So he can take her for granted all he wants, she’s not leaving. And there’s no boundaries as to what he can do to her. Nobody is there to stop him. And that is how abusive relationships start in Kosove. And very likely other underdeveloped countries. And that’s why we need feminism.


5 thoughts on “Kosova as a new country, abusive relationships and equal rights.

    • Kososheep says:

      A prideful export, as many say. I’m thrilled to hear that, especially after reading through your blog and seeing YOUR amazing work! “How do you do what you do” was just mesmerizing.


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