Media Library


FORMER-YU – Our language(s)

2021-06-13, 6:00 PM

A conversation among neighbours

The question as to whether Bosnian, Montenegrin, Croatian and Serbian are ultimately just variants of a ‘common’, pluricentric language or languages in their own right is one that can probably only be answered in political terms. What is plain is that everyone in the region understands each other’s languages 99 % of the time. Everyone agrees on that.

Reading & discussion with the writers Senka Marić (BIH) | Ivana Bodrožić (HRV) | Kralj Čačka (SRB) | Dejan Ilić (SRB) | Hosted by: Mascha Dabić, writer, translator and interpreter (AUT)

But young people are hardly taught any more that it is the same language being spoken in the neighbouring country. What does this mean in cultural terms for this centuries-old ‘language area’ and what do poets have to say about it? What constitutes home-grown literature now and what connects people with it? What does it mean when books are no longer distributed in a single language area? How do writers and publishers in the region work together today? How do poets in the ‘common’ language perceive each other? How is exchange managed between the cultural scenes? What happens to a cultural space when language policy has ensured that for decades only the identifiatory functions of language have been used and not its communicative functions? The writers Senka Marić, Ivana Bodrožić, Kralj Čačka and Dejan Ilić discuss these questions and read from their work.

Reading and discussion in Bosnian, Croatian and Serbian with German subtitles.

Project leader: Sladjana Strunk

Language Archipelago I: FORMER-YU – Our language(s) acknowledges the kind support of the translator network Traduki, the Goethe Institute Belgrade and the Austrian Culture Forum.