On April 12 a "Chernobyl: Between Past and Future" discussion as well as a presentation of the German translation of the book "Philosophy of kindness. From disaster to garden of hope" took place.
"EuroBelarus" Information Service spoke with Aliaksandr Tamkovich about his way into literature, his heroes, the situation in the country and his creative plans.
On the main problem of the Belarusian opposition
It is impossible to communicate with people in rigid boundaries, the person you are talking to won’t open up. And it is very hard to tell anything new about someone. I really do not like being asked to send interview before publication. People think that if they talk the way it is written in advertising leaflets, others will understand them better. I do not think so: people understand you when you talk to them in their language. That is the problem of our opposition.
On his own "gallery"
When I started working in the biographical genre 10 years ago I did not have any global goals. Now I want to create my own subjective "gallery". Indeed, the modern encyclopedia of Belarus does not include many personalities, there is a terrible censorship. Once Vintsuk Viachorka asked me: “Is there BPF in the encyclopedia?". We looked it up and the answer was ‘no’. There are other examples. It means that in 15 years people will not remember what the actual state of things was like.
On the journey to the Belarusian language
In 2007, at the suggestion of the late Aliaksei Karal I began to make sketches for the "Novy chas" newspaper. I thanked him but had to refuse his offer since the newspaper was in Belarusian language. And Aliaksei said: "Well, just write, and we will translate." I felt ashamed. My wife brought a program, which would underline Russisms, I put dictionaries around me and started to write. Oh I don’t envy the people who were the first to read it! But over time I got better and started to write in the Belarusian language, and after the Russians got the gas pipe and "Gazprom" appeared in Belarus, it is my principle to not write in Russian, although sometimes I have to do it for "Free news".
On the book "Philosophy of kindness. From disaster to the garden of hope "
The book is an attempt at restoring justice. After all, many people claim what the fund "Children of Chernobyl" has done to be their achievement. I suggested Gennadz Grushavy to make a book, we’ve been discussing it for a year. Finally we have agreed, but after some time Gennadz had a heart attack. Back then I had no idea that he had cancer... However his wife Irina Grushavaja stepped in and we made a book.
My wife and I traveled almost 5,000 km across the Chernobyl zone. What struck us was the scene when 200 meters away from the end of the zone there were cows grazing. What about the snow, the wind, the ground waters?.. If someone had told me that we would build a nuclear power station, I would have sent them to a psychiatrist.
On the next book, and the situation in the country
I want to raise money for the new book through the "Talaka" platform. I have never done it before and have never been selling my books in general. Nevertheless nowadays, unfortunately, it is impossible to do without help of people. The book is not political, it will be called "Life Mosaic". Once I've made the book called "Contemporary History in Faces", which consists of essays about 100 people. But it is not enough for Belarus and now I want to make a "second wave". There will be Zmicier Vaitsiushkevich, Ihar Varashkevich, Aleh Khamenka, Ales Kamotski, Kasia Kamotskaja, Ivan Kirchuk, Siarhei Horeuski, Henik Loika, Andrei Kudzinenka and Andrei Kureichik, Julia Charnjauskaja and many others.
I wanted to start the campaign on Easter. But under the circumstances it will have to wait until May - I hope the tension will have calmed down by the time. Generally speaking, the main difference between the events of March 25 and the election in 2010 is that at that time unlike now the authorities had something to fear. The authorities can not understand one thing: it is neither politics nor the "fifth column". People see what becomes of the country.