Hosted by Dr Mike Phillips OBE, British novelist, historian and curator
Monday 22 March 2010
19.00-21.00, The Ratiu Foundation / Romanian Cultural Centre, Manchester Square, 18 Fitzhardinge Street, London W1H 6EQ; Tel. 020 7486 0295, ext 108; e-mail: email@example.com; Entry is free but booking is essential.
WHERE EUROPE ENDS
Documentary / Romania / 50 mins / English, Romanian, Russian, Ukrainian with English subtitles
Written and Directed by Alina Mungiu-Pippidi and Sinisa Dragin
‘Where Europe Ends’ is the story of the new political division of Europe. It travels along the old Eastern steppe border of Europe, from Transcarpathia (in Ukraine) – which geographically is the very centre of Europe – to the North of the Black Sea where old Genoese castles still stand. The historical border now separates the enlarged European Union from Ukraine and Moldova. Locals left in the cold consider themselves Central Europeans and speak a mixture of regional languages (Slovak, Hungarian, Ukrainian, Romanian, Russian, etc). They are often related to groups and countries across the border in the EU. The film tells the story of some of these border inhabitants, who lived in three or four different national states in the 20th century without changing their village. Some can still sing all the national anthems. Today the old still have only their Soviet-era passports, so they find themselves cut off from relatives across the new EU border. As to the young, they are afraid that a new European wall is leaving them out of Europe for good – so they besiege European consulates or try smuggling themselves across the border. Their stories show how a border which came to be from the hazards of war and peace is now becoming a destiny, dividing once again the East Europeans between losers and winners of history.
Alina Mungiu-Pippidi is a Romanian policy expert, journalist, and Professor of Democracy Studies at Hertie School of Governance in Berlin. She is currently Senior Visiting Fellow at the Department of Politics and International Relations Oxford University. Alina has authored numerous books and articles in English, French and Romanian. In 2002-2003 she was the writer and director of the BBC documentary ‘A Tale of Two Villages’ based on her book ‘Deux villages’ (Paris: l’Harmattan), broadcast in summer 2003 by BBC World Service. Among others positions held in the media, she was News Director of Romanian Public Television.
Organised by The Ratiu Foundation / Romanian Cultural Centre in London.
Culture Power is a programme initiated by the Ratiu Foundation, consisting of a number of presentations and constructive dialogue with an invited audience.
With the support of ProFusion International Creative Consultancy.
Image courtesy of Alina Mungiu-Pippidi.