Martsinovich: Don’t be hung up on language

A contemporary Belarusian man of letters is similar to a spectre of communism; a lot of people have heard about him but hardly anybody has seen, journalist and writer Viktar Martsinovich told cultural analyst Maxim Zhbankou in Belsat’s program “Zhbankou’s Talk”.

Belarusian literature is often narrowed down to works created in Belarusian. “Please let’s behave as people should behave in the XXth century! Let’s think about plots, languages, characters, not only about the [Belarusian] language, the language and one more time about the language,” Viktar Martinovich calls. According to him, it is very difficult to explain to foreign publishers why even in plots so much attention is given to the language issue.

“If you feel free to write in Belarusian – write in Belarusian. But keep in mind that the plot is crucial, not a language you use,” the writer added.

Viktar Martinovich also made a few remarks on his third novel which has been not published yet. “It is a great provocation. I’ll lift the veil a bit saying that it could not have been written in Belarusian because of its characters and their social status. Some absurdal things in Belarus should be described by means of the Russian language,” the author stressed.


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