At the University of Graz, on 15th, May 1924, Andrić handed in his dissertation in German: “The Development of Spiritual Life in Bosnia under the Influence of Turkish Rule” (Die Entwicklung des Geistigen Lebens in Bosnien uter der Einwirkung der Tükischen Herrschaft). On the 12th June 1924, he passed the obligatory examination and the next day he was awarded the title Doctor of Philosophy. It is often asserted that his degree makes Andrić a historian, but officialy this degree was a qualification in Slavonic Languages and Literature. The dissertation was translated in Serbein and published for the first time in the literary magazin "Sveske Zadužbine Ive Andrića”, (“Sveske of The Ivo Andrić Foundation”), No.1, for 1982.
We may consider the dissertation in order to understand the achievement of describing and discovering human existence through the history of Bosnia as it is transformed through the literary work of Ivo Andrić. There are number of themes that are common to both the dissertation and Andrić’s artistic prose: the epic canvas, the feeling that events are flowing rather than progressing, the ability to compress history into narrow, local surroundings and give it general human value, the deep-seated hatred and conflicts among the Muslims, Turks, Serbs, Croats, Jews on the regional level, and war-tormented Europe on the wider stage. We may say that in Andrić’s dissertation reader can find the source of all the writer's most profound preoccupations.