A fairly precise periodization can be adopted for the last thirty years. The first fifteen years, following the revolution (23 August 1944), are engaged in a denunciation of the previous literature, condemned as a whole as hermetic and decadent: the military defeat and the advent of the socialist republic favor the affirmation of the novel (and in genre of literary creation), to which the representation of the working class, neglected until then, offers a vital element, and moreover ensure a new angle of view, which is no longer that of critical realism, as in the interwar period. Socialist realism – the term and doctrine belong to Russian criticism – offers the writer the principles for the complete representation of social reality. Equipped with an ideological conscience, the artist will no longer limit himself to denouncing contradictions, but will undertake to propose models of struggle to eliminate them. Therefore, at the center of his interest is the positive hero, who identifies his own with the aspirations of the community and sacrifices all his energies to the achievement of collective happiness.
Among the writers who, although already established, are the first to try to insert themselves into the problems connected to the new political-social situation or to re-examine figures from the past (N. Bǎlcescu, for example), starting from a new angle of view, we will only remember M.. Sadoveanu (1880-1961) and C. Petrescu (1884-1957). But the happiest realization of this first moment is the novel by a writer until then known only as a poet, Z. Stancu (1902-1974). His novel Descul ţ, “Lo scalzo “, 1948, begins a large cycle that from the pre-war period reaches the first years of popular democracy (R ǎ d ǎ cinile sînt love, “The roots are bitter”, 1958). But the lyrical timbre of the first volume has remained unsurpassed. Unfortunately, as has been said, the new socialist novel must develop within a fairly rigid ideological scheme: from Temelia, “La base”, 1951, by E. Camilar (1910-1965), the first novel on collective agricultural organization, in Pîinea alb ǎ, “Il pane bianco”, 1952, by D. Mircea (born in 1924), a novel now forgotten, and which nevertheless owes its success to the rigor with which the problems connected with agricultural collectivization are posed. It also happens that the conflict (takes place against the backdrop of a peasant civilization or arises in the factory environment) manages to find accents of revolutionary romanticism, to which, however, even the official critics will sometimes be forced to recognize “a spectacular and unique character”. We indicate among others: by E. Galan (1921), zorii robilor, “The dawn of the servants”, 1950; by D. Deşliu (1927), Minerii din Maramure ş, “The miners of Maramureş”, 1951; by I. Cǎlugǎru (1920-1956),, “Steel and bread”, 1950. Soon even this heroic inspiration will mortify itself into conformist schematism. To understand, moreover, how the literature of the fifth decade, in order to remain faithful to an abstract typology, condemned itself to the ankylosis of the inauthenticity, it is enough to consider the fact that, in 1954, a novelist born in 1924, F. Munteanu, for having dared violate, in the novel In ora ş ul de pe Mure ş, “In the city on the river Mureş”, the taboo of the positive hero, in order to “restore a human measure to the communist militant too” will cause a scandal. A slow process is necessary for the bravest and most gifted writers to be able to free themselves from conventionalism, which wants them to be tied to the false perspective of a sweetened optimism, returning man to the risk of error and setback, and human affairs to the laws of pain and death.
Among the writers born in the decade 1920-30, to whom we owe works of certain validity, at least worthy of note are: E. Barbu (1924), with the novel Groapa, “La fossa”, 1957, followed by Ş oseaua Nordului, “La strada del Nord “, 1959, Facerea lumii,” La genesi “, 1964 and, in 1973, Princepele,” Il Principe “, one of the most notable works of the last thirty years; T. Popovici (1930), who published Str ǎ inul, “The stranger” in 1955, and in 1958 Setea, “La sete”; and above all M. Preda (1922), a strong prose writer, faithful to his style of critical, honest and courageous reflection. Setting himself up with a novel,, “I Moromete”, 1955, whose sequel will appear only twelve years after the first volume (1967), he managed to create a type of peasant, different from those of Sadoveanu or Rebreanu, but equally authentic and vital on the psychological and artistic plan. Writers who adopt the form of the travel report occupy a place of their own, such as G. Bogza (1908), with Cartea Oltului, “The book of the Olt”, begun in 1939, and those who venture into science fiction and ” futurology “, such as I. Habanǎ (1931) with Viitorul at început yesterday,” The future began yesterday “, 1966, and Vl. Colin (1921) with Viitorul al doilea, “Anterior future”, of the same year.