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Opinions & Interviews

11 Dec 2017

Opinion: House of National Literatures in Moscow will develop ties between writers

Opinion: House of National Literatures in Moscow will develop ties between writers

MINSK, 11 December (BelTA) – The House of National Literatures in Moscow will develop contacts between writers from different countries, First Deputy Chairperson of the Union of Writers of Belarus Yelena Stelmakh told a press conference in Minsk, BelTA informs.

According to Yelena Stelmakh, Belarusian and Russian writers have never lost contact. The year marking the jubilee of the classical Belarusian authors Yanka Kupala and Yakub Kolas saw translations of their separate works into Russian and some other languages of Russia. In turn, Belarusian literary magazines publish translations of Russian authors. Works by CIS writers are also released on the website

The lack of contacts between authors from post-Soviet countries is evident today, the official added. The possibilities for exploring the current state of literatures of other countries are limited. The House of National Literatures in Moscow is designed to solve the information deficit problem. It will feature a venue for press conferences, roundtable discussions, and art meetings. Such cooperation will help deal with difficult tasks, Yelena Stelmakh remarked.

Belarus is the first country to host a presentation of the House of National Literatures. A delegation of the Maksim Gorky Literary Institute (Moscow) arrived in Minsk. The visit was a matter of course, rector of the institute Aleksei Varlamov pointed out, as Belarusian and Russian colleagues are more than just colleagues – they are friends.

The initiative to set up the House of National Literatures emerged long ago and received support at the highest level. The House is designed to host book presentations, months and ten-day festivals of various literatures, and exhibitions. The venue is being cleaned up on 11 December. Belarusian writers are expected to become the first guests to visit it.

Literary translation plays an important role in developing cooperation between authors. Plans have been made to offer courses for Belarusian translators in the Literary Institute, Aleksei Varlamov said. “We understand the importance of literary translation and realize the fact that the literary translation school has been lost. Today there are no young translators working with languages of Russia and Slavonic languages. This is why we would like to run courses for Belarusians and invite gifted young people who are eager to work with literature and literary translation to the Literary Institute” the rector added.

There are plans to announce a contest of translations and works. Candidates for the courses will be selected through a competition.

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