3.4 C
Ljubljana
ponedeljek, 29 novembra, 2021

The Prime Minister of Slovenia, Janez Janša, in a message on the occasion of a cultural holiday: The epidemic has exposed many weaknesses in society. It has become even more pronounced how unwilling we are to accept difference, to listen to each other, to respect each other, to maintain a culture of dialogue and mutual communication

by P.T.

»Throughout history, national culture has preserved the Slovene essence and strengthened the national consciousness, which achieved its realization through Slovene independence. Culture is therefore one of the key foundations of the Slovene nation and an independent Slovene state. Awareness of its importance is also reflected in the fact that the cultural holiday is a Slovenian national holiday and a non-working day,« said Prime Minister Janez Janša in a message on the occasion of Prešeren’s Day, a Slovenian cultural holiday.

We publish the message in full:

Dear Slovenes, citizens, dear compatriots abroad and around the world, dear friends,

throughout history, national culture has preserved the Slovene essence and strengthened the national consciousness, which achieved its realization through Slovene independence. Culture is therefore one of the key foundations of the Slovene nation and an independent Slovene state. Awareness of its importance is also reflected in the fact that the cultural holiday is a Slovenian national holiday and a day off work.

The coronavirus epidemic has strongly marked our lives and confronted us with a whole new reality. Last year was difficult for everyone. We are aware that with the measure of closing public life, culture has also suffered a great burden. Therefore, the government has so far allocated EUR 36.4 million in anti-corona packages to help cultural creators, associations, institutions and institutes in the field of culture. All in the desire that various activities in the field of culture would survive this difficult period with as few consequences as possible. Slovenia can be a model for other countries, both in terms of response and in terms of the amount of assistance due to the epidemic to the most affected activities, groups and individuals. For 2021, compared to 2020, the budget of the Ministry of Culture also increased by EUR 48.5 million, amounting to a total of EUR 238 million.

Culture has accompanied Slovenian people through various historical periods. It strengthened and encouraged them in the most difficult times, encouraging them in crucial decisions. This mission of culture is especially put to the test during an epidemic. In order to be successful in dealing with the epidemic, we must combine all our strengths and the best we have as a nation. That is why it is all the more difficult to understand the response of Slovenian artists in the field of culture, who used the situation due to the epidemic to deepen public divisions, to raise doubts about measures to prevent the spread of the virus, to sow fear and hatred. The situation is too serious to respond to through street activism, threats and acts of vandalism. From a culture that is a key part of a nation’s spiritual existence and as such a source of power to a nation to face difficult trials, one would expect a different, more state-building stance in these times.

It turned out that the epidemic hit us unprepared in many ways. It has exposed many weaknesses in society. It has become even more pronounced how unwilling we are to accept difference, to listen to each other, to respect each other, to maintain a culture of dialogue and mutual communication. It turned out how quickly we are willing to forget the weakest, how hard it is to give up our comfort and steady lifestyle. The epidemic has also raised some important questions in the field of culture. Maybe now is the right time for culture to set a mirror for itself as well.

In the second half of this year, Slovenia will hold the presidency of the Council of the European Union for the second time. This will be an opportunity for Slovenian culture and its recognition. I believe that with its creative energy and freshness it will confirm Slovenia’s integration into the European cultural space. The presidency will also be an opportunity to revive a common cultural space with Slovenes living outside the borders of our homeland.

Due to the epidemic, today’s cultural holiday will certainly take place in a different atmosphere than it would otherwise. Nevertheless, I want it to be no less perceived  and heartfelt. I am glad that many artists have found new, digital ways of creating and found new, innovative solutions to their artistic expression. As creativity spreads among people regardless of physical barriers and other limitations, the eternal truth that true art is never captured in time and space is reaffirmed. It is free and therefore timeless.

Even though hard times are behind us, let us never lose hope. For everything passes and even this difficult ordeal will pass. May the words of encouragement and hope of the great poet France Prešeren from his Wreath of Sonnets always accompany and encourage us:

»The weather will clear up for the people of Kranj, the stars will shine brighter, poems about them will be more solemn.«

Sincere congratulations on Prešeren’s Day, a Slovenian cultural holiday.

Share

Latest news

Claudiu Târziu: “We want a new Europe, of sovereign and strong nations!”

By Álvaro Peñas Interview with Claudiu Târziu, journalist, author and editor. Co-president of AUR party, Romania’s fourth largest political force, and member of the Senate...

Ski jumper Anže Lanišek wins World Cup event in Ruka

By: J.S., STA After fishing second at the men's Ski Jumping World Cup event in Ruka on Saturday, Slovenian ski jumper Anže Lanišek won the...

Pahor and Vučić discuss situation in region

By: P.T., STA Visiting Belgrade as part of the preparations for the next summit of the Brdo-Brijuni Process, President Borut Pahor met his Serbian counterpart...

Almost 1,500 Covid cases confirmed as w/w drop continues

By: J.S., STA A total of 1,478 PCR tests returned positive on Saturday as cases kept falling week-on-week, show the latest data by the...

Related news

Pahor and Vučić discuss situation in region

By: P.T., STA Visiting Belgrade as part of the preparations for the next summit of the Brdo-Brijuni Process, President Borut Pahor met his Serbian counterpart...

Almost 1,500 Covid cases confirmed as w/w drop continues

By: J.S., STA A total of 1,478 PCR tests returned positive on Saturday as cases kept falling week-on-week, show the latest data by the...

The first Mediterranean Day, which is of great importance for Slovenia, marked

By: UKOM On 28 November, we celebrated the first Mediterranean Day, which was declared in 2020 at the meeting of the foreign ministers of the...

Ministers adopted the Ljubljana Agreement and the Multiannual Work Programme for the Urban Agenda for the EU

By: UKOM The Slovenian Minister of the Environment and Spatial Planning, Andrej Vizjak, chaired the virtual informal meeting of ministers responsible for urban development. With...
Share