‘What we’re seeing can’t be called communism – but it has been happening for some time now and, in my view, it’s comparable.’ Svetlana Alexievich talks about the legacies of the Soviet past in Belarus; about literary freedom and the role of culture; and why, in her personal relationships, love prevails over the political.
is a Belarusian journalist and author who writes in Russian. She was awarded the 2015 Nobel Prize in Literature ‘for her polyphonic writings, a monument to suffering and courage in our time.’ Her books, which address Soviet and post-Soviet issues through multiple interviews with individuals, include: Цинковые мальчики (‘Boys in Zinc’) (Moscow. Molodaya Gvardiya. 1991); У войны не женское лицо (‘The Unwomanly Face of War’) (Minsk. Mastatskaya litaratura. 1985); Чернобыльская молитва (‘Chernobyl Prayer’) (Moscow. Ostozhye. 1997); and Время секонд хэнд (‘Secondhand Time’) (Moscow. Vremia. 2013).
Nobel laureate Svetlana Alexievich speaks to director Staffan Julén about love, reality and writing
Belarusian journalist and author Svetlana Alexievich was awarded the 2015 Nobel Prize in Literature for her work documenting the lives of Soviet and post-Soviet citizens. Her latest project, about love, is the subject of a documentary film by Swedish filmmaker Staffan Julén. Here, Alexievich discusses with Julén why she chose the subject, and what drives her work.