25 October 2016 Everything perishes, except for text – day one, languages
For Grzegorz Jankowicz, literature is a sort of a rescue, for Agata Bielik-Robson, it is a “small voice”, which stands in opposition to great narratives and always stands for what is individual.
Piotr Paziński wanted to escape from definitions, yet admitted that he is interested in things which can be seen between the layers of texts, and the status of a story is conveyed well by the metaphor of a fabric. On the first day of Conrad Festival we talked about literature, bringing up many different perspectives.
The definitions of literature, which were brought up during the meeting titled “Literature, or the 18th camel” created by Agata Bielik-Robson, Grzegorz Jankowicz and Piotr Paziński came from a mathematical problem, presented in the form of an anecdote, recalled in the book Życie na poczytaniu. Despite their disagreement on the involvement of literature, our guests agreed that it needs to be autonomous. Only then it will be able to go back to the world and change something, even though it is not necessary.
Then, Andrzej Stasiuk discussed changes, mainly those that we experience while travelling, to Aleksander Nawarecki: "Hitchhiking is almost like a monastery. Comprises mostly humiliation”. He considers travel to be a spiritual exercise, which teaches us to experience the borders and to cross them. Moreover, if it is not done alone, it becomes one of the most obvious forms of dialogue. “You join to talk, not to fight each other, but to cover some distance together”. As a hitchhiker, the longest he ever had to wait for a ride was seven hours.