LOST PROVINCE: ADVENTURES IN A MOLDOVAN FAMILY
— Vancouver: Beach Holme Publishing, 2002.
Highly recommended is Stephen Henighan’s Lost Province: Adventures in a Moldovan Family. One of the best travelogues about Moldova, it follows a Canadian’s experiences teaching English in this forgotten country and is humorous and touching while bringing up astute, even disturbing points about Soviet cultural colonisation and the inter-ethnic tension he finds there. Incredibly insightful, it will help you make the most of your trip there.
In 1994 Stephen Henighan decided to travel to Eastern Europe to teach English. Armed with a Romanian-language grammar and hours of taped lessons, Henighan applies to teach in Romania. Instead he winds up in Moldova, a former republic of the U.S.S.R. that was carved out of Romania after the Second World War.
Henighan’s writing is fresh and vivid. His underlying theme –the demoralizing effect of cultural colonization– is a weighty one, but his detailed account of everyday life is light and touching and often hilarious.
Henighan writes perceptively about the interpenetration of private and public lives...Lost Province benefits from Henighan’s close observations and sympathetic accounts of those he meets.
The trip with Henighan is well worth taking. He’s an astute, intelligent guide to this too-little-known part of the world. His observations about cultural influences and change are insightful, and I can only hope his travelling days are not all behind him.
Lost Province is often a bleak book, but Henighan’s analysis and personal portraits shine needed light into the dark corners of post-Soviet Eastern Europe.
The analysis of an author with an extremely clear perception of the realities....We are in the presence of a book that creates great discomfort due to the accuracy of its analyses and conclusions.