Dritëro Agolli (born 1931) is an Albanian poet, writer, politician, and former president of the defunct Albanian League of Writers and Artists. He studied in Leningrad in the Soviet Union and wrote primarily poetry, but also short stories, essays, plays, and novels. He was head of the Albanian League of Writers and Artists from the purge of Fadil Paçrami and Todi Lubonja at the Fourth Plenary Session of the Albanian Party of Labour from 1973 until 1992.
Agolli was born to a peasant family in Menkulas in the Devoll District near Korça and finished high school in Gjirokastra in 1952. He later continued his studies at the Faculty of Arts of the University of Leningrad and took up journalism upon his return to Albania, working for the daily newspaper Zëri i Popullit (English: The People’s Voice) for fifteen years. Agolli was also a deputy in the Albanian Parliament.
Beginnings as a poet
Agolli first attained success as a poet. His early verse collections I went out on the street (Albanian: Në rrugë dolla, Tirana 1958), My steps on the pavement (Albanian: Hapat e mija në asfalt, Tirana 1961), and Mountain paths and sidewalks (Albanian: Shtigje malesh dhe trotuare, Tirana 1965), introduced him to the reading public as a sincere and gifted lyric poet of the soil who already demonstrated masterful verse technique. An attachment to his roots came to form the basis of his poetic credo.
As a prose writer, Agolli first made a name for himself with the novel Com..