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Belarusian writer against cancelling cultures, including Russian
And the most powerful tool against colonization is the Belarusian language / pixabay
Belarusian writer Alhierd Bakharevich is against canceling culture, regardless of the language in which it is created.
"I believe that culture cannot be canceled. If some culture comes from Russia, it should not be banned. But what comes from Russia is not always culture; it's mostly propaganda and destructive masculism.
I understand Ukrainians, in their situation, total derussification is a justified step. It's a military strategy. But Belarus is not Ukraine. We are in a situation of war, but not that war. We may also be at war with Russia, but it's a different front".
Bakharevich also commented on the "canceling" of Russian film critic Anton Dolin by Belarusian Facebook and the resonance around the "Pradmova" festival. He reminds those who have been very vehemently critical of the organizers' methods that "Pradmova" today is the only chance for a Belarusian writer to meet their readers.
"Pradmova" is a festival in exile, the only festival of independent Belarusian culture today. Our opponents treated it as if we were going to hold it somewhere in Minsk in the Palace of Arts. Solemnly, as we did a few years ago. People just don't understand that this is the only opportunity for a Belarusian book to meet a reader.
We must not look at it with Ukrainian or Russian eyes. We should look at it with Belarusian eyes.
But to ask questions about colonization by Russia is worthwhile. And Bakharevich has some advice as to what weapons we should fight this colonization with.
"For many years, we have been saying that Belarus should be perceived in a post-colonial context. Now it's time to talk about Belarus in a colonial context again. Language is the best weapon at the moment.
It's difficult for me to analyze what is now happening in Belarus. All the information I get comes from my friends, from my colleagues. But they all tell me that there's more of the Belarusian language in Minsk. It will be difficult to assimilate us. It will be difficult to bring a new generation back into the empire".