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Bulgarian Cultural Policy in India and Bulgarian-Indian Cultural Relations in the 70s and 80s of the 20th Century

 

Violina St. Atanasova a , *

 

a Institute for Historical Studies, Bulgarian Academy of Sciences, Bulgaria

 

* Corresponding author

E-mail addresses: (V.St. Atanasova)

 

Abstract

This article examines the bilateral relations between India and Bulgaria in the field of culture - relations that have had an upswing after the mid-70s of the 20th century. Special attention is given to Bulgaria's efforts to strengthen its relations with India using the means of cultural policy; the role of the daughter of Bulgaria's head of state Todor Zhivkov, Lyudmila Zhivkova, for extending the cultural contacts between the two countries is noted. The main actions and forms used for the carrying out of the Bulgarian cultural policy in India are analyzed.

Keywords: Bulgarian Cultural Policy, India, cultural relations, 20th Century, Indira Gandhi, Todor Zhivkov, Lyudmila Zhivkova, Sheila Kaul, Arun Nehru, Amrita Pritam.

 

1. Introduction

Diplomatic relations between the People's Republic of Bulgaria and the Republic of India were first established in 1954. They were based on the principles of peaceful coexistence.

The visits of the heads of state of the two countries – of Indira Gandhi in 1967 and of Todor Zhivkov[1] in 1969, marked the intensification of the bilateral contacts at official level.

This article examines bilateral relations between India and Bulgaria in the field of culture - relations that have had an upswing after the mid-70s of the 20th century.

Special attention is given to Bulgaria's efforts to strengthen its relations with India using the means of cultural policy; the role of the daughter of Bulgaria's head of state Todor Zhivkov, Lyudmila Zhivkova for extending the cultural contacts between the two countries is noted. The main actions and forms used for the carrying out of the Bulgarian cultural policy in India are analyzed.

 

2. Materials and methods

The material that was used, was from Bulgarian archives – from the archive of the Bulgarian Ministry of Foreign Affairs (AMFA) and from the Central State Archive (CDA).

The study used the basic methods of cognition: the problem-chronological and the historical, which allow the aggregation of both the tasks and results of one concrete activity to be analyzed in regards to the bilateral relationships of a certain period.

 

3. Discussion and Results

 

 

4. Conclusion

From the standpoint of Bulgarian historiography, which now brings under revaluation all events and phenomena related to the communist regime, the period is complex, especially when it comes to assessing the role of the Bulgarian rulers in international relations.

When examining the Bulgarian-Indian relations, since the mid-70s there has been a reliable trend to intensify bilateral contacts between Bulgaria and India, especially in the field of culture.

For the Bulgarian society, this was a positive development because it significantly increased the information about a distant country, the amount of translated literature, the number of Indian films, exhibitions, etc., in correspondence with the public interest.

Indian citizens also had the opportunity to get acquainted with the Bulgarian culture.

At the same time, a number of planned events remained unfulfilled, and after the death of Lyudmila Zhivkova, Bulgaria was gradually revising her cultural policy, including some initiatives that were planned with the Indian side.

 

References

AMFA - Bulgarian Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

CDA - Central State Archive.

Kalinova, 2013 - Kalinova E. Politikata na Lyudmila Zhivkova za “kulturnoto otvaryane na Bulgaria kam sveta” – predpostavki i spetsifika. [Lyudmila Zhivkova’s Policy for “Cultural Opening of Bulgaria to the World” – Prerequisites and Context – In: Kulturnoto otvaryane na Bulgaria kam sveta [Cultural Opening of Bulgaria to the World]. Sofia University “Sv. Kliment Ohridski”, 2013, pp. 39-55 [in Bulgarian]

Shaposhnikova, 2002 - Shaposhnikova, L.V. Lyudmila Zhivkova – gosudarstwennij deyatel i podvizhnik. [Lyudmila Zhivkova – a Statesman and Ascetic] - Kultura i vremya. 2002. No. 1/2, pp. 423-437 - http://www.icr.su/upload/Jivkova.pdf [in Russian]

Baeva, 2013 - Baeva, I. Lyudmila Zhivkova kato fenomen v Iztochna Evropa [Lyudmila Zhivkova as a Phenomenon in Eastern Europe] – In: Kulturnoto otvaryane na Bulgaria kam sveta, [Cultural Opening of Bulgaria to the World]. Sofia University “Sv. Kliment Ohridski”, 2013, pp. 160-174 [in Bulgarian]

Troebst, 2013 - Troebst, St. Lyudmila Zhivkova prez pogleda na radio “Svobodna Evropa” [Lyudmila Zhivkova Through the Eyes of Radio Free Europe] – In: Kulturnoto otvaryane na Bulgaria kam sveta, [Cultural Opening of Bulgaria to the World]. Sofia University “Sv. Kliment Ohridski”, 2013, pp. 103-107 [in Bulgarian]

Elenkov - Elenkov I. Tekstove za komunizma v Bulgaria. Kulturnata politika na Bulgaria prez vremeto na komunizma [Texts about Communism in Bulgaria. Cultural Policy of Bulgaria during the Communist Era] - http://www.kas.de/wf/doc/kas_38762-1522-11-30.pdf?141127093152 [in Bulgarian]

Todorova-Marinova, 2010 - Todorova-Marinova, V. Retseptsiya na indijskiya kulturen fenomen v bulgarskata knizhnina (1984-2009) [Reception of Indian Cultural Phenomenon in Bulgarian Literature] Sofia 2010, pp. 399 [in Bulgarian]



 

 

 




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