A writer, professor, and more recently a mountain climber who looks at the world with eyes wide open and marvels at it innocently, Prof. Nikola Petković is an inexhaustible source of topics, ideas, observations, and dilemmas such as issues of intellectual property, copyright in cyber reality, overcoming the limitations that new reality imposes on us as we try to adjust. Professor Petković tells us solidarity has proven to be one of the sure solutions.
Professor Nikola Petković, Ph.D., is a full professor with tenure at the Department of Cultural Studies at the UNIRI Faculty of Humanities and Social Studies. Apart from teaching at his alma mater, he is also a professor at the Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences in Zagreb and the Faculty of Political Science in Zagreb. Before his return to Croatia in 2003, he taught at several American universities, and since returning, as a visiting researcher and professor he taught at Cornell University and University in Tel Aviv. He is the author of 20 books of various kinds, types, and genres. From 2011 to 2018 he was the president of the Croatian Writers’ Association, and for many years worked as a columnist for the Novi list Daily, where he has monitored and evaluated recent poetry production.
Of course, the circumstances of the COVID-19 pandemic are challenging for everyone, but Professor Petković still manages to find positive sides in exploring the possibilities offered by the new reality. Social distancing has opened up new dimensions of closeness, and once this situation ends, he believes the world will be a better and more beautiful place.
Although now physically distant from his students, he claims that he has rarely felt closer to and more connected with them. When asked if he could give concrete examples and explain his position, Petković emphasizes that this situation allowed the students to show their maturity, responsibility, vulnerability, openness, empathy, solidarity, and overall traits we all share but rarely show.
When asked about the current measures, Petković explains that all the restrictions are, in this case, justified, as they aim to protect our health and life itself. However, they have, in some unusual, unexpected way, stimulated the flow of new ideas, opinions, and initiatives that have never occurred before.
As someone who relies solely on imagination, and to whom letters are only symbols on the path for the unknown, Prof. Petković certainly has a unique motto: Interestingly enough, before the pandemic, I was often a trademark of positive resignation – I have no expectations, so nothing can disappoint me. Now it seems as if that sentence came from another world… For now, I think I will accept my son’s motto: Step by step.