15 May 2021, Saturday, 8:35
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Svetlana Alexievich: Freedom Will Come

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Svetlana Alexievich: Freedom Will Come
SVETLANA ALEXIEVICH
PHOTO: REUTERS

The Belarusian writer has become an honorary doctor of the Free University of Brussels.

Nobel Prize laureate in literature Svetlana Alexievich has become an honorary doctor of the Free University of Brussels, Radio Svaboda reports.

It was announced about the title during the ceremony "Day of Change," which is held annually at the university on the occasion of the International Press Freedom Day. This year's ceremony was dedicated to women in journalism.

Svetlana Alexievich addressed the participants of the event via video conference call. She said that "in the 1990s, when we were learning to say the once-banned word 'freedom' out loud in the streets and squares, we thought that freedom was a holiday that would come very soon - it was just around the corner. But then it turned out that it was also "collapse, chaos, wars in the outskirts of the empire, it was the people who had lost faith in ourselves and in the word 'freedom' itself, who started to be afraid of this word".

Then it became clear that freedom - it is a long way and a lot of work. Alexievich admitted that she was surprised by how quickly Stalinist practices returned to some post-Soviet countries - "as if there had not been those thirty years of trying to be free, talking about freedom, writing books about freedom".

Yet she is convinced that the need for freedom has not disappeared altogether - the revolution is gone from the streets, but it has remained in their heads.

"Those young people who are resisting today - they will achieve freedom. This freedom will come, because the modern man can no longer be made unfree," - the Nobel laureate believes.

It turned out that she has not finished her story of the "red man," now forced to continue it.

"Communism is not dead. It came out to give us the last battle. And now our children and grandchildren are resisting it with us. And I am writing a new book again...", - Svetlana Alexievich said.