Albania is a state of mind, a metaphor for space, and a rite of passage. As represented by media and politics, Albania runs the risk of turning into nothing but a site of migration: a shelter for the refugees from Kosovo or a point of no return in the escape towards the Western myth. Albania lives the tragedy of distance: its citizens are close to everything and everyone (NATO, the U.N., Italy, the East...), yet they are forced to leave their homeland, and rely only on the image of a future which never happens. Escape or hope: this is how we picture a better tomorrow. This precarious equilibrium, a hybrid of desire and frustration, often produces a cynical optimism, or generates a feeling of melancholy and uselessness in the face of history.
Albania may seem an obscure and even unlikely place to contain such a vast body of archaeological finds. However, the country's small surface area is not at all indicative of its richness or of the significance of what lies under its soil. Given the region's place in Greek history, its classical sites are of great importance. But Albania also contains remains that will allow us to further our knowledge about other periods, from the Paleolithic to the Byzantine. As these recent finds tell us, Albania is not a backwater but an archaeological hotspot.