Book arsenal 2019Book Arsenal


On May 22-26, 2019, the 9th International Book Arsenal Festival – an intellectual event in Ukraine, where book, literary and artistic scenes develop and interact with each other, and joint high-quality, timely and innovative projects are implemented – will be held at the Mystetskyi Arsenal. 

The 9th Festival focuses on a theme of co-existence, a common being based on values ​​and arrangements. As in the wider context – meaning our distant and close neighbors, political and cultural, issues of (good) neighborliness, partnership and cooperation on the international scale. And in the narrower context – meaning co-existence of people within one country or territory, one settlement or even a house; about mutual support and empathy, but also about conflict, confrontation or indifference. The theme under the working title Neighborhood draws attention to “us” and “them” within one country, to different experiences of neighborhood throughout history, as well as to whether we know the literature of our neighbors and how our neighbors have imagined and imagine us now.

“Responsibility, participation and dialogue – these concepts are actively discussed in Ukrainian society as key to the further development of the country. All of them assume the other side, the other voice. Who are these well-known and unknown “others” with whom we interact on the geographical scale of the country, in the immediate border zone and within the framework of modern political alliances? Where does the private territory end and where does the common one start?

What kind of images of neighbors, enemies, fellows, allies and traitors were created by the Ukrainian culture, and who is portrayed by it today? And how from the modern point of view, we re-read these images in the texts by Taras Shevchenko, Panteleimon Kulish or Ivan Nechui-Levytskyi?”, says Vira Baldyniuk, curator of the focus theme program, as well as editor-in-chief of the online magazine Korydor, journalist, critic, who joined the Book Arsenal team in 2018.

During the events of the focus theme program, we will consider who we are in the eyes of each other and who we would like to be in the perception of the outer world. What should one know about oneself in the mirror of European and world cultures? How do the countries cope after 1989, the year of the fall of the Berlin Wall?

In addition to the focus theme program, the Festival will host exhibition projects, as well as curatorial and special programs presented by invited curators and partners, the Ukrainian program will be held in cooperation with publishers.