One-Sentence Autobiography

Seven years ago, for a book of one-sentence autobiographies by Serbian writers, included, although I’m an American, because of my two books with Zarko Radakovic, I wrote:

After Ljubica Radaković fed me chicken soup and taught me to say Srbi su dobri ljudi, after our Belgrade publisher realized I was not a figment of Žarko’s fertile imagination, after translating Peter Handke’s Justice for Serbia, after traveling up the Drina River between the wars, after the man in Bajina Bašta said he had read our book and I said “so you’re the one,” after the cruise missile bought with my tax dollars shook the stove that cooked the chicken soup, after I left the homophobic Mormon Church that still inspired some of my best feelings and denounced the xenophobic country that I still love, after my hair turned silver and the divorce was final and my children grew up and Lyn taught me her vegetarian ways, after fifty-five years I still wanted, with an only partially embarrassing adolescent intensity, to be a writer.

About Scott Abbott

Ph.D. in German Literature from Princeton University, 1979. Then I taught at Vanderbilt University, BYU, and Utah Valley State College. At Utah Valley University, I'm Director of the Program in Integrated Studies and former Chair of the Department of Humanities and Philosophy. My publications include a book on Freemasonry and the German Novel, two co-authored books with Zarko Radakovic (published in Serbo-Croatian in Belgrade), and translations of a book by Austrian author Peter Handke and of a catalogue of an exhibit called "The German Army and Genocide." More famously, my children are in the process of creating good lives for themselves: as a model and manager, as a teacher of Chinese language, as a watershed scientist and science writer, as a jazz musician, as a corrections officer, as university students, and as parents. I share my life with UVU historian Lyn Bennett and our yellow dog Blue. Some publications at
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2 Responses to One-Sentence Autobiography

  1. wellinja says:

    Serbian or not, a fantastic sentence!


  2. Scott Abbott says:

    thanks jan. it was fun to write and rewrite.


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