The Keys ep20 The Latvian Creative Unions plenary session
Did the Latvian Creative Unions plenary session mark the beginning of the Awakening?
On 1 and 2 June 1988, Soviet Latvia’s creative intellectuals held the Creative Unions plenary
session. The Writers Union decided to hold their plenary session alongside experts and
professionals from other fields, hence the criticism covered far more than was expected from
‘artists’. They were joined by composers, actors, architects and journalists.
Even though there was no talk of independence back then, the plenary session demanded that
Latvia is granted ‘sovereign national statehood in an alliance of free states’. For the first time ever, respected intellectuals dared to publically speak with such freedom that the people were left breathless. Was the Creative Unions plenary session the beginning of the Awakening? No, it was more than that – it was a guarantee for its continuation. A point after which there was no going back.