Explore Belarusian Culture

In this section, you will find articles on well-known people and places from the Belarusian cultural scene, as well as interesting facts about the past and present Belarus that remain unknown to the Western audience.

Thu, 2010-10-28 14:20

Mac Space Desktop Apple Cosmic Pictureshttp://www.nv-online.info/get_img?NrImage=2&NrArticle=12034Barys Kit (Boris Kit) is a unique Belarusian, who is well-known far beyond the boundaries of his country and who has not abandoned his roots and his native language. In  April 2010, Kit  has turned 100 years old. A renowned scholar, mathematician, physicist, chemist, doctor, member of various astronaut societies, including the International Academy of Astronautics, Kit celebrated his birthday in Frankfurt, Germany. And, as always, he talked a lot about Belarus.

Thu, 2010-10-28 14:10

With a machete in his soil-stained hands, Uladzimir Matusevič navigates a vast green field. His face is well-tanned, his fingers resemble tree roots, and nails are like small rocks with dark rims – marks left by years of hard labour. A couple of skilful swings of his knife and – voila! – another leek sprout is ready for a market stand or a supermarket shelf.
Uladzimir begins his daily work in the field at dusk. At dawn, he returns to his castle.

Fri, 2010-10-08 10:26

http://mw2.google.com/mw-panoramio/photos/small/32301368.jpgCompletely rebuilt from the ground up following its devastation in the second world war, Minsk was hailed as a model Soviet city. It formed the centre of the German resistance to the Soviet advance in the first half of 1944, and the huge military activity pretty much reduced the city to a pile of rubble, decimating its population to a little over 50,000. The peacetime rebuilding was bold and brave, encompassing the best in Stalinist architecture, with impressively grand designs, broad, sweeping avenues and stylish, bustling boulevards.

Wed, 2010-06-09 11:56
Kastuś Kaĺinoŭski by Achille Banoldi

A photographer was almost a magician. He not only captured reality, but, having hidden himself under a black coat, created a whole new universe with the help of his magic tripod-mounted box. A photographer’s studio resembled a theatre scene. Its walls were decorated with landscape paintings and the floor often strewn with leaves or sand in order to create the atmospheric illusion of real space.
As photography set out on its triumphal march across the globe, photo studios began to appear in cities and towns on Belarusian lands. At that time, Belarus was part of the Russian empire, the land, where various cultures – Belarusian, Polish, Lithuanian, Jewish, and many others – mixed under the influence of the Russian power. Since photographers deal with images, not words, it is all the more difficult to determine which cultural tradition they adhered to, even though they lived and worked in Belarus. Anyways, let us discover some interesting names of photo pioneers, who captured everyday life on Belarusian lands with their lenses.

Fri, 2010-05-14 15:51

Viktar Martynovych, author of a novel painting a nightmarish surveillance society with some distant parallels to Belarus, was surprised to find his book on sale at almost every bookstore. Paranoia is a love story set against the background of a totalitarian regime. “This is a work of fiction … but its setting is slightly reminiscent of the environment in which I live,” Martynovych said.

Thu, 2010-04-29 15:37

This man on the faded 19th century photograph might know the answer. His name is Francišak Bahuševič. By a mere twist of his pen he determined the path of the entire Belarusian nation, which, in his time, was still a nation-to-be. In his book “Dudka Bielaruskaja” (‘Belarusian Pipe’) Bahuševič not only openly called his fellow countrymen “Belarusians” but also filled this definition with a feeling of pride. This was enough to turn the tide. The next generation of intellectuals built up on the momentum Bahuševič had created. As a result, slightly more than half a century later, Belarus became an independent country for the very first time in its history. As Valiancin Akudovič, prominent contemporary Belarusian philosopher, said in his interview to “Belarusian Atlantis”, the programme aired on Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty, “The God created the Universe, Bahuševič invented Belarus.”

Mon, 2010-03-29 12:06

The captured Turks began to make a terrible rattling and noise in their native tongue in order to create an illusion that there were many of them in the house. However, this did not help. The robbers began to dismantle the gates.

Thu, 2010-03-11 12:37

Belarus-born adventuress as Dr. House of the 17th century

The family of the officer could really use the services of Salamieja. His children kept dying right after their birth. When Salamieja entered their home, the brigadier’s wife was just about to deliver a baby. As it had already happened before, the newborn son of Karaulov was suffering from asphyxia. When Salamieja saw it, a childhood memory instantly surfaced in her mind. Once she was present during the delivery by a 40-year-old woman in a village in her homeland. The woman’s newborn son did not scream. The midwife, a simple uneducated woman, took the tab, which was used by peasants to leaven the dough, and covered the baby with it, while saying a prayer. She wasn’t a half-way through with the prayer, as the child revived and began to scream. Salamieja had no idea why it worked. However, she repeated the same trick, and it worked – the brigadier’s son came back to life.

Fri, 2010-02-19 13:35

Belarus-born adventuress as Dr. House of the 17th century.
Biographies of famous adventurers always make exciting reading. Having opened a book about Giacomo Casanova, Marco Polo, or Mata Hari, one can hardly lay it aside before the last page is reached.

Can Belarus boast with its own Baron Munchhausen, Odysseus, or Indiana Jones? Do the descendants of this country have any exciting life stories to offer?

Fri, 2009-12-18 18:17

The festive table is an important part of Christmas celebration. However, modern Belarusians are only vaguely familiar with traditional Christmas rituals. For example, many believe that the table on the Christmas Eve is supposed to bend under the weight of all kinds of delicious dishes. However, traditionally the Christmas supper was prepared according to the strict rules of fast observance. This supper was called “Kuttsia”, which was also the name of the main course. Kuttsia is a simple porridge of barley, with some addition of honey and poppy seeds. It had a mystical role in Christmas celebration. In earlier times, well-off families prepared kuttsia from wheat or rice, with hazelnuts, raisins and other sweets.