MJR XV Programme
:::: LECTURES ::::
Local heritage, ties between man and tradition, studies of intercultural links

The festival of Baltic culture and music Mėnuo Juodaragis is growing each year and dedicates ever bigger part of the programme to the studies of rich Lithuanian heritage, relationship between man and tradition, and intercultural links. This year, the Film and Lecture Pavilion of the 15th festival will host the most prominent researchers of various fields of Lithuanian culture to discuss the central topics of the Festival, reveal new discoveries, share ideas and hold constructive debates.


-------------------- Friday (August 24) --------------------


Knowledge of Lithuanian birds and their perception through proverbs and other folklore texts

As compared to the material gathered by other countries, Lithuanian proverbs can be distinguished for their unique knowledge of nature. Gražina Kadžytė will discuss the role of birds in Lithuanian proverbs and their analogies with human life.



Prof., Habil. Dr. Daiva VYČINIENĖ
Bird voices in the Lithuanian traditional music: Nature and culture

Birds have an exclusive place in the traditional Lithuanian culture, which is confirmed by the numerous widespread imitations of bird voices. Those imitations reflect different levels of the relationship between nature and culture. These and many other related issues will be discussed by Professor Daiva Vyčinienė from the Lithuanian Academy of Music and Theatre.


Lt Col Eugenijus RAUBICKAS
Kaunas Aerodrome: The cradle of Lithuanian aviation

The director of Kaunas Aerodrome and one of the most prominent pilots, Lieutenant Colonel Eugenijus Raubickas will reveal the entire history of Lithuanian aviation through the history of Kaunas Aerodrome: from the formation of the air force and Lithuanian Aviation Club to the achievements in international aviation competitions.


Remigijus KARPUŠKA
Bird watching


Environmental protect expert Remigijus Karpuška from the Lithuanian Fund for Nature will share tips and tricks on watching birds and listening to their voices. He will also introduce a book Bird Watching and answer questions.


-------------------- Saturday (August 25) --------------------


Mija Džeinara UBARTIENĖ
Witching as violation of initiation and transformation of a woman/man

Herbalist and representative of Lithuanian national heritage, practitioner of Tibetan medicine Mija Džeinara UBARTIENĖ will speak about the most important and sensitive aspects of family, birth, sterility and divorce.


Lithuanian roots

Who we are? Where do we come from? Who do we feel we are? Will the relatively new field of genetics provide answers to these questions? The latest theories on the origin, the essence, the purpose and the goal of our nation will be explored by the statesman and former MP Vidmantas Povilionis.


Algirdas KLOVA
Voices of birds

Lithuanians have always loved birds, listened to them, spoken to them, respected them and even deified them. Perceived as the mediators between the heaven and the earth, birds have always fascinated men with their superiority: ability to fly, sing and dive. This admiration was reflected in the musical folklore, which will be discussed by the composer and performer Algirdas Klova.


Common birds of Lithuania

Although many birds look alike to the eyes of most observers, there is in fact a great variety of species with unique appearance and voices. The ornithologist and nature tour guide Juozas Miškinis will take closer look at the most common birds encountered in Lithuania.


Prof., Habil. Dr. Audrius BEINORIUS
Birds in Hindu and Buddhist mythology and iconography

From the times of Rigveda, the birds have been held in great esteem in Indian mythology with the foremost role of mediating between human and divine dimensions. Audrius Beinorius, Professor of Oriental Studies from Vilnius University, will look into the symbols, meanings and functions of birds in Indian mythology, and their depiction in the Hinduist and Buddhist iconography.


Bird ringing

The head of the Lithuanian Bird Ringing Centre, biologist Ričardas Patapavičius is glad to have turned his hobby into a career. Birds are ringed across the globe in order to determine the routes of their migration, protection zones, and behaviours. Lithuania has been practicing this method for over 80 years. The biologist will speak about the peculiarities and results of bird ringing, and provide tips on the actions to take when a ringed bird is spotted.


The bird of God

Doctor of Humanities, speaker at Vilnius University, and senior editor of the magazine Liaudies kultūra Dainius Razauskas will speak about the perception of God in ancient Lithuania and reveal the image of the ancient Lithuanian priests who used to be titled the “Birds of God”.



Conquerors of the Atlantic: S. Darius and S. Girėnas

15 July 1933, the airplane Lituanica piloted by Lithuanians Steponas Darius and Stasys Girėnas took off the Floyd Bennett Field, New York. In 37 hours and 11 minutes, the aviators covered 6,411 kilometres across the Atlantic. 650 km from their destination, Kaunas, Lithuania, the aircraft crashed in the forest of Soldin. Jonas Čepas from the Lithuanian Aviation Museum will disclose details about this pioneering transatlantic flight.


-------------------- Sunday (August 26) --------------------


Water birds

While watching birds in the sky, we often forget that many of them are also expert swimmers and divers. Different groups of birds have different ways of adjustment to such life: those staying closer to the shores have longer legs and beaks, while floaters and divers have webbed feet. The young naturalist Vilma Gudynienė will provide an overview of water birds encountered in Lithuania.


The treasures of the Great Lithuanian Dictionary: The funny small folklore

The expert of Lithuanian language, former chief editor of a publishing house and a host of a TV show will speak about funny and inventive Lithuanian proverbs, sayings, riddles, imitations and curses.



In search of temples: The household of an ancient Lithuanian

There is a theory that the structure, plan and use of an ancient Lithuanian house are the reflection of the view of the world in ancient times. One of the most prominent Lithuanian archaeologists, the award-winning researcher of sanctuaries and natural culture will speak about the archaeological and ethnographical studies of ancient Lithuanian households from the perspective of Baltic mythology and religion.


Introduction to the magazine Liaudies kultūra and a discussion on the natural Lithuanian culture

The editorial staff of the magazine Liaudies kultūra (Folk Culture) will introduce the magazine which has been in publication since 1988 and invite professionals of the field to take part in a debate on our natural culture.