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On Multiculturalism

South Pacific, December 1999 To be a Romanian writer (therefore in the minority) in New Zealand! Ibi patria, ubi – wife. In New Zealand, I think about the confluence of our lives. We come from so far apart, we meet unexpectedly, we link our lives, our fates together.

The Couch Grass

Even if this was a long time ago, two of the phrases that remind me of her really bring her back to my mind. When her yard was filled with Gypsies, and – everybody knows this – such a thing happens often enough, because this is the way they go, in gangs, she would chase

On The Romanian Melting Pot

When King Béla of Hungary decided to invite the Saxons to settle in Transylvania, the land had been severely depopulated by the Mongol invasion. The Germans came from the dry lands of Northern Europe and found here what must have seemed to them sort of a Promised Land.

On Minorities' Literature

In Romania, no less than 18 minorities live alongside the majority population, having more or less weight. This has favored – especially in some cases – a very interesting and significant cultural melting pot process, the birth of an extremely rich and diversified cultural

Photographs - A Different Kind Of Bucharester Pedigree

7 January 1839: The Science Academy in Paris announced the arrival of a new art: photography. 39 days later, on 16 February 1839, the historic invention was reported in the Jassy magazine Albina Românească. The first camera – a daguerreotype – known and used in Bucharest

Bucharest As An Alternative Space

It may be said about some cities that they are theatrical; that – in other words – they look like a stage set. Take, for instance, Venice or Naples. It may be only an illusion, however, given a host of plays by Goldoni or Eduardo de Filippo whose plots revolve around

Recent Public Memorials In Bucharest: Paul Neagu's Century Cross

Paul Neagu's Century Cross was set up at Charles de Gaulle Plaza (the former TelevisionPlaza), Bucharest, in September 1997, as a memento of the 1989 anti-Communist riots. It is a six meter wide lenticular bronze disk with a large cross pattern on both faces made up

R.E.M.

excerpt I am going to tell you of things that happened back in 1960 or 1961, when I was still a little girl, no more than 12 years old. I was living with my family in Moşilor Street, in one of those queer houses, with the second floor protruding a little, with two very

What We See

excerpts …Once, when his wife's condition showed signs of deterioration, Marcu entered the Sfînta Vineri church, on his way home from the shops he had called at to collect his rents. He prayed a long time and fervently, though he could hardly concentrate, choking

Bucharest Wit

In Romanian, Bucharest is a plural noun. This implies it is a multifaceted city, dazzling in its diversity. However, it is not a conglomerate of villages, of boroughs, like London or New York. There are not self-contained neighborhoods, each with its main street (High Street),

Chronicles Of An Optimist

excerpts NOISES OF THE CAPITAL For reasons I cannot exactly explain, the flow of ideas circulated by the independent press has strikingly dwindled to a mere trickle. One can only put it down to the times of fatigued irritation we are living through as we wait for the much

Magic Lantern Projections: A Dialogue With Octogenarian Actress Dina Cocea, Honorary Citizen Of Bucharest

The oldest recollections of actors of your generation used to begin with the scene of a provincial school festival: the future star winning a well-known, sympathetic audience made up of parents, grandparents, family friends, touched aunts. The memory of past reality is overwhelmed