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Kiisler, Vilja

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4 articles of this author have been cited in the European Press Review so far.

Delfi - Estonia | 03/11/2010

Estonians disdain successful author

The Finnish-Estonian author Sofi Oksanen has become famous all over Europe with her novel Purge about the Soviet era in Estonia. On Tuesday she was awarded the French literary prize Prix Femina étranger. In Estonia, however, she has come under fire from colleagues and literary scholars, the news portal Delfi writes: "These men are simply annoyed that literature is no longer what it was when they were young. But the book as a product is changing and books are marketed in more or less the same way as furniture or washing powder nowadays, with the personality and media presence of the authors playing an important role. Moreover books are printed to make money. In terms of marketing Oksanen without doubt has great abilities, but perhaps the attacks against her define Estonia's international image more than her book. We run the risk of being perceived as an envious nation which believes it has exclusive rights on the way its history is portrayed."

Eesti Ekspress - Estonia | 11/02/2010

Fighting poverty more important than introducing the euro

One in five Estonians lives under the poverty line, the weekly Eesti Ekspress writes, calling on the government to tackle the problem: "Poverty produces poverty. The result is inadequate education, because children from poor families have little chance of obtaining an academic degree. Everyone talks about how Estonia is firmly rooted in science and academia, but no one ever bothers to figure out how many talented children never get an education because they can't afford it. One hardly dares to ask how much of our intellectual potential has already been destroyed, because the answer may be so alarming that we don't want to know. ... The major problems facing Estonia today are unemployment, poverty and poor health, yet the government's biggest goal is the introduction of the euro. What will that achieve but more poverty? The euro will bring us neither jobs nor better health."

Delfi - Estonia | 28/03/2008

Forgetful Estonia

All too soon, Estonians are taking their own state, for which they once fought hard, for granted, writes journalist Vilja Kiisler. "For some time now it's become increasingly seldom to hear the phrase 'former Soviet Union'. Our state is taken for granted. But it has also become something one can complain about. We can insult our president and our prime minister, and we can say whatever we like about our parliament. We do this as if we had forgotten that this is our own state, for the freedom of which we were once prepared to live on potato peelings. When we complain we fail to realise that we should be delighted that we are no longer arrested for our comments. We can call our prime minister a pig and no one will come knocking on our door at night because of it."

Delfi - Estonia | 19/12/2007

Vilja Kiisler on western democrats

Estonian journalist and commentator Vilja Kiisler criticizes the narrow worldview of proponents of western values: "The modern westerner is usually Christian or non-religious; to him, all other faiths are marginal. The enlightened westerner may well behave with tolerance towards members of other religious communities. But non-Christians are always viewed as 'the others.' It's not spoken aloud, because that would be impolite and not politically correct. Not only that: the modern westerner also considers small countries and their representatives as mere fringe phenomena; for them, the only ones who count are citizens and representatives of big countries."

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