17 November 2022 The Continental Literary Magazine: discussion on central european literature

The meeting, chaired by the program director of the Conrad Festival, Grzegorz Jankowicz, will be attended by:

  • Pavla Horákova (Czech writer and journalist)
  • Viktor Horváth (Hungarian prose writer and university teacher)
  • Weronika Gogola (winner of the Conrad Prize, permanently residing in Slovakia)
  • Silvester Lavrík (Slovak writer and theater director).

In the year 2005 – not long after the enlargement of the European Union to include new countries – Alexandra Laignel-Lavastine's book “Spirits of Europe” was published in France. The author states that new hope for the European community would come from Central European countries. “Revival can only come on the condition of reassimilating the Central European part of our intellectual heritage,” wrote Laignel-Lavastine. Central Europe, however, is not only about ideas and stories, but above all about experience, which Milan Kundera once called “work in the laboratory of twilight.” The enslavement against which the people living in this part of the continent struggled was, as Václav Havel said, a shorthand for the entire 20th century world.

What else is Central Europe and what is its contemporary literature? What experiences are described today by writers from Hungary, the Czech Republic, Slovakia, and Poland? What are the specifics of what is called Central European literature?

Join us for a discussion with four distinguished authors: Pavla Horáková (Czech writer and columnist), Viktor Horváth (Hungarian prose writer and academic teacher), Weronika Gogola (Polish writer living permanently in Slovakia), and Silvester Lavrík (Slovak prose writer and theater director). All of them are engaged not only in the creation of stories, but also in translation, which enables them to constantly dialogue with other literatures, both Central European and Western. What they also have in common is that they publish in Hungary’s The Continental Literary Magazine, an English-language periodical that presents writers from Central Europe, promoting their work in Western countries, primarily in the United States.

The discussion will be accompanied by a presentation of the publishing activities of The Continental Literary Magazine by Margit Garajszki, editor, and will be moderated by Grzegorz Jankowicz (Polish essayist and the program director of the Conrad Festival).

The event is a part of the CONRAD AFTER HOURS cycle. The Continental Literary Magazine is a partner.

The organizers of the Conrad Festival are the City of Krakow, the KBF and the Tygodnik Powszechny Foundation.