16 March: Issue 100 - February 2017
Romani Library Project
About this initiative
The Roma people have lived as a diaspora spread across all over Europe for centuries. Their number is estimated to be at least 6,6 million of which approximately 4,6 million speak a variety of Romani language, which makes Romani a genuinely cross-border European language. Although the environment and conditions under which the Roma live differ from country to country, they are united not only by common cultural roots, but also by a history of social discrimination and racial persecution which peaked during the Holocaust but still persists today. Efforts to overcome poverty and discrimination, and to improve Roma social and political participation, an integral part of the EU mission, cannot succeed without parallel efforts to strengthen Roma positive self-identification and enrich the understanding of European citizens for their Roma neighbours.
Romani Library platform is based on the belief that positive affirmation of Roma literature and heritage can fight prejudices and enliven intercultural dialogue. It is a pan-European platform that focuses on the selection, translation, publication, distribution, and promotion of significant works of contemporary Romani literature in a multilingual 22-volume book collection. The goal of the project is to introduce Romani literature to the mainstream European publishing scene and reading audience and to promote this literature as an integral part of contemporary European literature.
The Romani Library project is implemented with the support of the Culture 2000 program of the European Commission and OSI-Budapest. It is developed and realized in cooperation with a pool of advisers involving the most prominent researchers on Roma culture, language, and literature in partnership with the Romani Project at Karl Ferentz University (Austria), Romano Dzaniben (Czech Republic), Resource Center for Roma Communities (Romania), Roma Page (Hungary), and over 20 organizations and publishers.
Implementing survey on contemporary Romani literature;
Organizing of writers’ and translators’ workshop to discuss issues of Romani language, orthography and translation;
Translating and publishing of significant works of Roma literature in Romani, Czech, German, Hungarian and Romanian languages;
Organizing cultural events promoting Romani literature and Romani Library titles at book-fairs, conferences and other public events;
Distributing for free of Romani Library titles to libraries, media, higher education establishments and schools via targeted distribution of complimentary copies;
Distributing for free of Romani Library titles to cultural organisations, educational establishments and media via targeted distribution of complimentary copies.
A conference on Romani literature with the participation of 12 experts from 6 countries discussing the means of selection and promotion of quality literature by Roma authors;
Professional network linking authors, translators, scholars, publishers, academic, educational and cultural institutions and Romani media;
A profound survey on Romani literature in Europe covering over 100 organizations and experts at national and international levels;
A united bibliography of literature by Roma authors including bibliographic information on more than 1000 literature pieces, 50 to be comprehensively reviewed and 28 classified as titles of literary excellence;
Selection of 22 volumes to be published as part of the Romani Library series in 5 European languages (including Romani);
A Romani literature stand and presentation of the project at the International Book Fair in Sibiu, Romania - European Capital of Culture 2007.