Latvian poets in the 31st Vilenica International Literary Festival

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September 20, 2016

Latvian poets in the 31st Vilenica International Literary Festival

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From 6th until 11th September, 2016, Latvian poets Artis Ostups, Arvis Viguls and Ingmāra Balode took  part in the 31st Vilenica International Literary Festival covering its latest topic of “Literature and Ethics”. Latvia was one of this year's foreign guests at the festival, therefore Latvian literature and culture was represented in a series of various events, that included poetry readings, round table discussion “Latvia in Vilenica”, presentation of the anthology of contemporary Latvian poetry in Slovenian, and other events in venues around Vilenica, Ljubljana, Lipica and other towns.



“Vilenica Festival is rather political. Both the opening speech by the president of the Slovenian Writers' Association, and the closing speech by the Slovenian Minister of Culture were inundated with critical opinions towards neo-liberal capitalist ideology in which poetry can hardly be heard. The poems were political as well with the Crystal Vilenica prize being awarded to one of the authors included in the almanac, the Ukrainian poet Katerina Kalitko, who writes about life in a war torn land. The organizers of the festival had set the theme to be “Literature and Ethics”. One could say that the central discussion at the festival was regarding the responsibility of the artist. In contrast, the group of Latvian poets stood out with pure poetry. And that was a good thing,” poet and translator, Artis Ostups, shares his experience at the festival.



The anthology of Latvian poetry in Slovenian was compiled by the editor-in-chief of Punctum magazine, Artis Ostups. The 'Dzeja' anthology comprises works of fourteen Latvian poets: Uldis Bērziņš, Inese Zandere, Liāna Langa, Edvīns Raups, Māris Salējs, Anna Auziņa, Inga Gaile, Kārlis Vērdiņš, Ingmāra Balode, Marts Pujāts, Arvis Viguls, Artis Ostups, Justīne Janpaule and Katrīna Rudzīte. The book was edited by Klemen Pisk, poems translated by poets Breda Biščak, Milan Dekleva, Miriam Drev, Nada Grošelj, Brane Mozetič, Ana Pepelnik, Klemen Pisk and Veno Taufer.

For more information please visit : Vilenica Festival

Latvia's participation in the 31st Vilenica International Literary Festival was supported by the Ministry of Culture of the Republic of Latvia and partners in Slovenia.