Posted: 22.03.2023 14:50:00

Commonwealth of creators

Anniversary 30th Minsk International Book Fair takes place in the capital city

The 30th Minsk International Book Fair started its work on March 22nd and, as usual, gathered a lot of guests from different countries. One of the important events of the book holiday is the presentation of the Modern Literature of the CIS Countries project. Three volumes of the newest anthology, which includes the best examples of today’s artistic literature, are of great interest not only to philologists, but also to the average reader.  


“The project is designed primarily to strengthen cultural and humanitarian ties between countries. All countries that are and were part of the CIS participate in it. During the 30 years of independence, fiction continued to develop in each of the states, new authors and significant works appeared, which today are not well known in the general cultural field of the Commonwealth. The best translation and editorial forces of the country were involved in the work on the creation of the three-volume edition. The Modern Literature of the CIS Countries anthology includes works of prose, poetry and children’s literature translated into Russian. The project is implemented with the assistance of specially created editorial boards from each participating country. The work on anthologies made it possible to draw up a fairly voluminous and vivid picture of the current state of the literatures of the peoples of the CIS countries, presented the most relevant topics and issues that are raised today by the authors,” First Deputy Chairperson of the Belarusian Union of Writers Yelena Stelmakh explains.
Photo by BELTA
The volumes inspire respect and really allow you to get an impression of what is happening today in the literary field of our neighbours: for example, in the anthology of modern prose of the CIS countries — more than 1200 pages, it includes works by 94 authors from 11 countries. The poetic volume includes poems by more than 100 poets, and the volume of children’s literature is no less representative. The forewords were written by authors whose works are already rightfully considered classics — People’s Writer of Uzbekistan Timur Pulatov, People’s Writer of Kazakhstan Olzhas Suleimenov, one of the most popular Russian-language authors of children’s literature Andrey Usachev.
Belarusian authors are widely represented in all three volumes of the anthology: they are the national writer of Belarus Nikolai Cherginets, and prose writers, laureates of state and literary awards Ivan Saverchenko, Vladimir Salamakha, Georgy Marchuk, Ales Karlyukevich, Viktor Pravdin, Vladimir Gavrilovich, poets Mikhail Pozdnyakov, Vladimir Mozgo , Vladimir Karizna — the author of the text of the National Anthem of Belarus, as well as famous children’s writers — Nikolai Chernyavsky, Nina Galinovskaya, Gennady Avlasenko, Elena Stelmakh and many others. 
“In addition, within the framework of the anniversary book fair, bilingual anthologies of modern Russian prose and poetry are presented, bringing together 48 prose writers and 32 poets of modern Russia. They were released in partnership with publishers of the Commonwealth countries in 11 versions, that is, in Russian and in all languages of the countries participating in the project. These are unique publications, since contemporary Russian writers and poets have been translated into the languages of the peoples of the CIS countries even less often than national writers into Russian over the past three decades. The translation of modern Russian prose and poetry into the Belarusian language has become a kind of cultural event, many well-known writers of Belarus have joined this process and successfully realise themselves in translation activities,” Yelena Stelmakh said.

This year, Russia is the guest of honour of the exhibition. 2023 has been declared the Year of the Russian Language as the language of interethnic communication in the Commonwealth of Independent States, and the Russian programme of events will be dedicated to the richest Russian cultural and literary heritage.

By Irina Ovsepyan