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Why I didn't condemn my father, a communist


The need for liquidation of communism
Tomas Venclova Poet
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Aš stojau aiškiai į vengrų revoliucijos pusę ir gana aiškiai tada supratau, kad komunizmo pataisyti neįmanoma, jį galima tiktai sulikviduoti. Ir kad kiekvieno padoraus žmogaus pareiga yra tą komunizmą kiek įmanoma klibinti. Na, vienas gali vienaip klibinti, kitas kitaip, bet tą daryti reikia stengtis tą daryti. Nebūtinai griebus ginklą į rankas, jeigu kas gali griebti ginklą tai irgi neblogai, bet galimi ir įvairios kitos veiklos metodai. Na, ir mano draugai irgi laikėsi panašios pozicijos. Aš dar buvau studentas, bet kažkaip jau nuo to laiko neslėpiau, kad mano pažiūros visai nesutampa su oficialiomis pažiūromis, kad aš į komunistinę ideologiją žiuriu neigiamai, arba bent jau labai skeptiškai, ir laikausi kitokių pažiūrų.

I unequivocally took the side of the Hungarian Revolution and quite clearly understood that it wasn't possible to repair communism; one could only liquidate it. And it was the duty of every decent human being to shake the foundations of communism to the maximum. Well, one person could do that in one way, another in a different way, but it was necessary to do. Not necessarily by taking up a weapon – if someone could take up a weapon that wasn't bad either – but various other methods were also possible. Well, and my friends also took a similar position. I was still a student but somehow already from that time I didn't hide the fact that my views were at complete odds with official views, that I regarded communist ideology in a negative way or at least very sceptically, and that I held different views.

Born in 1937, Tomas Venclova is a Lithuanian scholar, poet, author and translator of literature. He was educated at Vilnius University and later at Tartu University. As an active participant in the dissident movement he was deprived of Soviet citizenship in 1977 and had to emigrate. Between 1977 and 1980 he lectured at University of California, Berkeley, where he became friends with the Polish poet Czesław Miłosz, who was a professor of Slavic Languages and Literature at the school, as well as the Russian poet Joseph Brodsky. He is currently a full professor at Yale University.

Listeners: Andrzej Wolski

Film director and documentary maker, Andrzej Wolski has made around 40 films since 1982 for French television, the BBC, TVP and other TV networks. He specializes in portraits and in historical films. Films that he has directed or written the screenplay for include Kultura, which he co-directed with Agnieszka Holland, and KOR which presents the history of the Worker’s Defence Committee as told by its members. Andrzej Wolski has received many awards for his work, including the UNESCO Grand Prix at the Festival du Film d’Art.

Tags: Hungarian Revolution

Duration: 1 minute, 3 seconds

Date story recorded: May/June 2011

Date story went live: 20 March 2012