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Le Nouvel Observateur - France | Wednesday, April 25, 2007

For Andrzej Stasiuk, communism is a part of European history

In an interview given to Gilles Anquetil and François Armanet, the Polish writer Andrzej Stasiuk refuses to "separate Europe from the 'Europeanism' of communism. After all, communism is a purely European reality. It is here that it was first conceived and it was indeed here that it was put to the test. It cannot be said that 'you had communism and we had Europe'. This is one more iron curtain in the European consciousness - the belief that communism was elsewhere. It was here, with us in Europe, and in this sense it is part of the same national heritage as the Renaissance, the baroque, the chateaux of the Loire Valley, etc. ... Since the happy event of the fall of the Soviets, we simply have a Europe that stretches from Kiev to Lisbon, from Tallinn to Tirana, and that's that. The Albanian Europeanism of Tirana is worth just as much as that of Luxemburg, for example, though the former is considerably more colourful."

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