Reading culture: July 3 Bookstan International Literature Festival

Bookstan International Literature Festival “No East No West” will be held for the ninth time in Sarajevo from July 3 to 6, organized by the bookstore and publishing house Buybook.

Created nine years ago to mark the 20th anniversary of Buybook, Bookstan has become a meeting place not only for domestic, but also regional and international authors.

The executive director of the festival, Lamija Milišić, said that the central theme of this year’s festival is “Zarjavele trumpete” based on the song of the group Kongres, performed by Zoran Predin, who is opening Bookstan this year with his book “Bezgrešna”. She stated that this year they did not translate the name of the theme into English, but the original name “Zarjavele trumpete” remained because it itself represents a reference to the heritage of a generation.

– What we want through a literature festival is to ask questions: What is our cultural heritage? What is our literary heritage? In what way does today’s popular generational literature correspond with generations that do not belong to it, as in our BiH. society develops a dialogue between different generations? Is there any gap, any tension between us, and in what way do we correspond as actors on the cultural scene – she underlined.

Milišić said that authors from various parts of the world come to the Festival, including from those where war conflicts are currently taking place.

– We want to see how they react as members of a generation marked by an extreme situation and how literature reacts in a timely manner in such moments – she said.

The director of the festival program, Damir Uzunović, pointed out that the word Bookstan means the land of books.

– At the beginning of July, we live in the Land of Books. This is our celebration of publication, expectations of books, conversations with authors, an attempt to capture contacts with contemporary trends in literature, presentation of domestic and international authors… – said Uzunović.

He also stated that Bookstan will draw attention to the events in Palestine.

– Literature is isolated, but not so isolated that it is not touched by important things, it is also an engaged art – Uzunović believes.

At this year’s Bookstan Book Festival, readers and lovers of literature will have the opportunity to meet numerous authors.

Among others, the writer from Palestine Mosab Abu Toha will come to Sarajevo, who will present the book “Poems from Gaza”, Peter Maass will arrive at Bookstan where, in conversation with Florence Hartmann, he will present his cult book “Love Your Neighbor”, there are also the books / diaries of Draga Glamuzine, Refik Ličina, presentation of the “Words in Motion” edition, within which the books “Strongly Followed Trains” by Bohumil Hrabal translated by Hasan Zahirović and “Mission London” by Alek Popov translated by Žarko Milenić have been published so far. Aleksandar Hemon will present the new novel “Bejturan and the Rose”, and Faruk Šehić will also come with the new book “Cinnamon Letters, Diamond Creatures (Saga of Survivors)”.

Programs will be held in Atelier Figure, with authors mostly from Slovenia and Croatia, Academy of Fine Arts, where round tables will be held on topics such as “Ethical challenges of literature in the age of political unrest” and “Rusty trumpets: generation as a cultural concept”.

Promotions will be held in the courtyard of the Buybook bookstore, and these are 19 literary promotions that include authors from Palestine, Iraq, Bulgaria, the United States of America, Russia, France and countries of the region.