The fourth edition of the Slavic Garden programme, organised by the Pula book fair in partnership with the FSK, took place at the Pula Book Fair(y).
The guests of this year’s Slavic Garden were Finnish writer Sofi Oksanen and Bulgarian author Kapka Kassabova, who writes in English. In her opening greeting at the start of the programme, FSK Director Andreja Rihter said that at the Slavic Garden has always been a place for expanding our horizons and that this year it was time for a valuable perspective on the Slavic world “from the outside”.
In her conversation with Ivana Peruško Sofi Oksanen presented her novel Dog Park, which is also set in post-Soviet Ukraine and in which “the corruption of the East feeds the greed of the West”. The discussion on war in Ukraine and the reasons behind it could not be avoided. Kapka Kassabova’s lyrical travelogue, Border, a Journey to the Edge of Europe, provided a “psycho-geography” of Europe’s forgotten periphery, its raw beauty and hidden tragic stories.
At this year’s Slavic Garden, visitors heard two different writing voices, hard and rough and a quite different one, lyrical and mild, but both of them spoke, as Ivana Peruško, the programme’s manager, wrote, about survival and raw beauty “on the edge of Europe, on the edge of reason”.