Pre-Opening Event

On the eve of the opening of the Vilenica Festival, we will play host to the renowned Basque writer Bernardo Atxaga, whose visit to Slovenia marks the publication of the Anthology of Basque Literature and his third novel in Slovene translation. The event, organised in collaboration with the publishing house Študentska založba, is part of the project “Europe’s Lesser-Known Literatures at Vilenica,” which this year focuses on contemporary Basque writing. The translator Marjeta Drobnič will moderate the discussion, which will also feature the participation of the Slovene actor Brane Šturbej. The programme will feature guitaristsAlen and Dejan Mujkić.

In collaboration with Študentska založba

Official opening of the 21st Vilenica International Literary Festival

The opening of Vilenica will take place in the Hotel Club atrium in Lipica. Welcome notes will be followed by a reading of the three shortlisted candidates for the CEI Fellowship for Writers In Residence and the announcement of the fellowship winner.

Presentation of the CEI Fellowship for Writers in Residence

At the 21st Vilenica International Literary Festival, the Central European Initiative in collaboration with the Slovene Writers’ Association will present the CEI Fellowship for Writers In Residence. The CEI Fellowship for Writers in Residence is a newly established award aimed at encouraging cross-border cooperation and promotion in the field of literature for young writers from Central European countries not yet part of the European Union. The fellowship is endowed with a cash award of EUR 5,000 for a three-month stay in any of the Central European Initiative Member States, selected by the candidate. The three shortlisted candidates will be guests of the 21st Vilenica International Literary Festival. At the opening of the festival the fellowship winner will be officially announced and presented at one of the festival events. The international jury is comprised of 5 members: Jani Virk, Lucija Stupica, Patrizzia Vascotto, Ludwig Hartinger and Igor Grdina.

CEI Round-Table Discussion at Vilenica: “Who can hear one’s neighbour’s story?”

The discussion, taking place on 7 September will be moderated by Simona Škrabec who conceived the theme of the debate. Here are some starting points for the discussion:

”The question of European identity remains open although the division of the continent into two blocks is happily forgotten. However, discussions mainly follow the model well illustrated by the case of the former Yugoslavia. From the individual we proceed towards identification with the first frame of reference (Slovenia), rooted within a wider notion (Yugoslavia), which can – if necessary – be included into a larger unit (Europe). The frames of reference can be multiplied and adapted at will, but the fundamental characteristic of the concentric circles of identities is that they fit one into another like Russian babushkas. However, as a result of personal experience, many people have more than one central core. Belonging to one community or another cannot always be as clearly demarcated as regions in old atlases. The colours dividing countries, nations or even administrative units cannot describe the world, which is becoming increasingly aware of its fragmentedness.

Admittedly, this phenomenon is not new, particularly not in Central Europe. Robert Musil ironically remarked that in his time every prominent philosopher could name a few millions of loyal followers, so it wasn’t only nations and languages what shattered the world of yesterday. But – despite its complex structure – Hapsburg Austria was the last frame of reference still making it possible that the writings of a nobleman from Kočevsko were read with the same interest in Vienna as well as in Wroclaw. After the Versailles Treaty, Europe failed to build a similarly large paradigm. The European Union enables only the free flow of capital, but not of people or let alone of their opinions. It is hard to expect that Europe could produce a framework wide enough for everyone to feel at home in. Prešeren’s utopia of a ‘Europe of neighbours’ seems slightly more feasible. On the other side of the border we will one day find a neighbour instead of a demonised opponent, who is different, yes, but to whose story we are willing to listen. How far away are we from this vision of the romantic poet?” (Simona Škrabec)

4th International Comparative Literature Colloquium

The Slovene Comparative Literature Association in co-operation with Slovenian Writers’ Association and Department for Comparative Literarture and Literary Theory of the University of Ljubljana, organises the 4th International Comparative Literature Colloquium, themed “History and its Literary Genres”, which is to be included in the 21st Vilenica International Literary Festival. The event will be chaired by Vanesa Matajc, PhD (Department for Comparative Literature and Literary Theory, Faculty of Arts, University of Ljubljana) and MrGašper Troha, junior research fellow (Faculty of Arts, University of Ljubljana). The participating authors will discuss the proposed topic from a variety of viewpoints, including: genesis of the historical literary genres; structural changes in the historiographic literary genres according to different conceptions of the history from romanticism to nowadays; relation between historiographic literary genres and: a) political ideologies; b) national mythologies; appearance of the historiographic literary genres in theatre and film, perseverance on the traditional concept of history in popular (trivial) historiographic literary genres in order to invigorate the consciousness of a national identity or political ideology; poetics and authopoetics of the writers of historiographic literary genres.

Presentation of Slovene translations of books by Vilenica 2005 Prize Winners

The Cankarjeva Publishing House will publish two books by Vilenica 2005 Prize Winners: a collection of poetry by Ilma Rakusa translated by Kajetan Kovič and a book of essays byKarl-Markus Gauß translated by Mira Miladinović Zalaznik. The books will be presentedtogether with the authors and the translators.

Lesser-known Literatures of Europe at Vilenica: Contemporary Basque Literature

At Vilenica 2006 a new project will be launched. “Lesser-known literatures of Europe at Vilenica” is a project aimed at presenting those literary landscapes in Europe which have for various reasons remained in the shadow of bigger and better known traditions. This year, the focus will be on Basque literature. A range of events will be organised so as to bring home the rich literary production of the Basque country to the Slovene and international public. On 5 September we will play host to Bernardo Atxaga while a second series of events will take place on Friday, 8 September. A round-table discussion themed “To Write in Euskera, the Basque Language, Today and Tomorrow” will be moderated by Marjeta Drobnic. The debate will be followed by a reading by four authors from the Basque Country: Harkaitz Cano,Miren Agur Meabe, Rikardo Arregi and Unai Eliorraga. On this occasion, the Anthology of Contemporary Basque Literature, as the first book of a new collection of the Slovene Writers’ Association titled Vilenica Anthologies, will be published.

Reception by the Mayor of the City of Ljubljana

The reception by the Mayor of the City of Ljubljana will take place at the Ljubljana castle. The evening will be dedicated to the presentation of Vilenica 2006 Prize Winner, Serbian poetMiodrag Pavlović.

Presentation of the Crystal Vilenica award

The Crystal Vilenica award will be presented to one of the authors from Central Europe, featured in the Vilenica Almanac and appearing at a literary reading within the festival.

Culture of the Porabje region at Vilenica

After a successful presentation of the contemporary literature of Beneška Slovenia, we will bring into focus the literature and culture of another Slovene minority, which lives in the Porabje region in Hungary. Porabje situated Northeast of Slovenia is part of the Slovene ethnic and linguistic area in Hungary. For almost half of the century it was cut off from the Slovene cultural area. It was only in the 90s after the democratic changes in Hungary and in Slovenia that it opened up again. Due to this isolation, the Porabje minority is tied to the Porabje dialect. As a result, it is one of the lesser known minorities in Slovenia.
The presentation of Porabje culture at Vilenica is co-organised with writer and poet Dušan Šarotar. An overview of the history and culture will be provided by Franci Just while special attention will be given to the very first novel ever written in the Porabje dialect by writer Francek Mukič. On this occasion, a photography exhibition entitled “Between Mura and Raba”, featuring images of the Porabje region through the eyes of a renowned Slovene photographer Jože Suhadolnik, will be opened.

Presentation of the grand Vilenica 2006 Prize

The central event of the festival is the presentation of the Vilenica 2006 Prize to the Serbian poet Miodrag Pavlović, one of the major poetic figures in Serbia with international renown. The presentation will take place in the Vilenica cave on Saturday, 9 September at 19.00.

Literary readings

Wednesday, 6 September, at 8.30
Lipica, Valley of the Mother of God
In case of rain the event will take place in the Wedding Hall.

Thursday, 7 September, at 7 p.m.
Nova Gorica, France Bevk Public Library
Hruševje by Postojna, St Daniel’s Church
Lokev, St Michael’s Church

Friday, 8 September, at 5 p.m.
Ljubljana, Slovene Writers’ Association Summer Garden
In case of rain, the event will take place at Jazz Club Gajo.

Friday, 8 September, at 8 p.m.
Ljubljana, Ljubljana Castle

Saturday, 9 September, at 11 a.m.
Literary matinée at Štanjel castle

Accompanying Programme

Events organised by the Slovene Writers’ Association

Book Fair
6–11 September 2006
Hotel Klub, Lipica

Vilenica on Radio Slovenia 1
In collaboration with Radio Slovenia
5 Sept, 8 p.m. – 8:40 p.m.: 3rd Programme: “Literary Evenings: Contemporary Basque Writing”
7 Sept, 9:05 p.m. – 9:45 p.m., 1st Programme: “Literary Evening: Vilenica Prize Winner Miodrag Pavlović”
5–10 Sept, 11:05 p.m. – 11:15 p.m., 1st Programme: “Literary Readings by Guests of Vilenica 2006”

Images from the Basque Country
In collaboration with the Institut Cervantes
4 Sep, 5 p.m.: Plenilunio, directed by Imanol Uribe, 112 min
5 Sept, 5 p.m.: Vacas, directed by Julio Medem, 96 min
Both films will be in the Spanish language with English subtitles.
Slovanska knjižnica / The Slavonic Library, Ljubljana

Discussion: Steps from Vilenica, Traces from Porabje
The Slovene Language and Culture in Porabje
Moderator: Franci Just
27 Sept 2006
Slovenska matica, The Kongres Square 8/1, Ljubljana

Events Organised by the Vilenica Cultural Centre

Translation Workshop
10–16 July 2006

Gathering of Central European Publishers
Late September 2006
Publikacije 21. Vilenice
Publications of the 21st Vilenica Festival

Changes to the programme are possible.