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The magic box is open - intercultural dialogue

EYID 2008

The magic box is open: The European Year of Intercultural Dialogue 2008 launched in Hungary

The European Year of Intercultural Dialogue 2008 in Hungary was launched on January 10th, in the Glass Hall of Művészetek Palotája. The thematic year of 2008 was launched by Bogyay Katalin, international under-secretary of the Ministry of Education and Culture. At the event, the national ambassadors and the leaders of the national projects were introduced.

The Babel Web Anthology of Typotex is part of the EYID 2008, for more information, please visit the Babel Web Anthology on the webpage of the EYID 2008.




“The European cultural sphere is a magic box full of treasures we weren’t even dreaming about. The process of common creation is the most beautiful part of this diverse ground. The most interesting components of Europe’s culture are the diversity of the union and the union of diversity. I see Europe’s cultural sphere as something not threatened but inspired by diversity. An open culture has to believe in its own power, it has to be aware of its richness to feed other cultures; but it has to be sensitive enough to be enriched by other cultures.” – said Bogyay Katalin. Then, she introduced the Hungarian ambassadors of the year: Kokas Katalin and Kelemen Barnabás violinists, Polgár Judit international chess master, Varga Dániel water polo player and Kerekes Band.

Bogyay Katalin was followed by György Gábor, leader of the Representation of the European Commission in Hungary. He emphasized that the most important task of the Year is to enhance the dialogue between the 492 million EU citizens, in order to create a better understanding and integration.

The Year was welcomed by Loboda Zoltán, leader of the Department for European Union Connections in the Ministry of Education and Culture; Gáncs Andrea, leader of the National Coordinating Body in Hungary, asked journalists to report on the Year as much as possible, as they have a key role in promoting intercultural dialogue.

The leaders of the national projects were also introduced: more than 40 projects, all matching the goals of the Year, will receive support through the KultúrPont Office. These projects – from the fields of languages, music, dance, science and art– will mainly be supported through the communication campaign.

The event was followed with huge interest by the media, being attended by representatives of the most important daily and weekly newspapers, online portals, TV and radio channels.

The best moment was definitely when the violinist couple Kokas Katalin and Kelemen Barnabás played parts of Bartók’s violin duets. These compositions were inspired by Hungarian and Balkan folk music, proving that intercultural dialogue has been part of our lives since long time ago.

The KultúrPont Office asked some of the most famous and interesting people in Hungary to tell what intercultural dialogue meant for them. The one minute-long videos can be seen at

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