Why love and not, for example, pandemic, loneliness, alienation, new normal, an even newer world and so on and so forth? It can also be the other way around: why pandemic, loneliness, alienation, new normal, an even newer world and so on and so forth, and not love?
Actually, it is the only way…
Every big, milestone, historic event – which the persistent pandemic for sure is – puts a shadow on everything else. It happens with wars, earthquakes and, as seen, with this virus. And, of course, with so many other, too many, things. However, in each of these times of turbulence and wars, adversity and suffering, life does not stop. Especially the artistic one. Consequently – even causally, because the beginning can not be determined in the unbreakable bond of author, work and public – and readerly.
The obsession with covid, as a group of British scientists called the current collective state of mind, is understandable but also very demotivating. We can say it differently; if in these horrible times nothing matters (enough) besides the pandemic, does that mean books should not be written, printed, read or dealt with in any way, except dusted?
Had we, even for a moment, thought so, we wouldn’t have prepared the 26 th Book Fair(y) last year, nor would we have held it more than six months later. This, 27 th Book Fair(y) would probably have happened but much, much later.
In the last 19 months we have lost forever the magnificent Istrian writer Drago Orlić and magical Josip Osti.
In the year 2021, we are celebrating half a century of the Biblioteka XX veka (20 th Century Library), 700 and 200 years since the deaths of Dante Alighieri and F.M. Dostojevski, respectively. It is also the 40 anniversary of Miroslav Krleža’s death.
During all this time, since the first day of panic and fear until this moment, writers have written. Since no one writes in order for his/her computer memory to stay empty, books have been read, awarded, lent and told. Life, to repeat, not even artistic or reader’s, did not end nor plans to. That is why we do everything to keep the Fair’s continuity, no matter the circumstances, limitations and consequences. We guess, nothing less was expected of us.
True, one might have expected the subject of the fair not to be love, rather something else, more adequate. How was it: pandemic, loneliness, alienation, new normal, an even newer world and so on and so forth.
Authors presented at the 27 th Book Fair(y), as well as those we remember, did not write about this. They did write about many things, whatever their subject or idea were, as they did about love that is not, as an old ballad says, just a word.
We will talk with our guests this year about what love is, can be, how layered, different, inspiring, painful, passionate and powerful.
After all, the Book Fair(y) arose from love and the magnificent madness of being in love. It was late summer of 1995 when, like today, one could have asked why love and not… Well, it does not matter.
That is why love and why Book Fair(y)!