The National Council of the Slovenian National Minority in Serbia decided on its fifth regular session, held on 27 June 2015, to start a journal dedicated to culture, science and education that would publish information about the activities, research and reflections of those individuals who study these topics in Serbia, Slovenia and elsewhere.

The basic idea behind the establishment of the Journal for Culture, Science and Education is to showcase the research and reflections of authors involved in these areas of study in Serbia and Slovenia and to publish papers that will bring together and connect at a professional level various areas of creative work and research – those areas that are in any sense related to Slovenia and/or Serbia. Information about culture and cultural events has so far been disseminated primarily by bulletins of some Slovenian associations in Serbia that have published on their pages short reports about events and projects prepared by individual associations. Therefore, we have decided that the National Council of the Slovenian National Minority, as the central organization that brings together all Slovenians in Serbia regardless of whether they are members of an association or not, should become responsible for the publication of a periodical that will bring together the reflections and activities of all those in Serbia or Slovenia who study culture, science, education and learning, visual and literary work, as well as those whose work touches upon one or another cultural space.

The title of the journal – Slovenika [1] – has been chosen with the idea to make it immediately clear to readers that the journal primarily deals with Slovenian culture and respect for it – i.e. cohabitation in the Serbian cultural space, as well as with the intention to make it recognizable in Slovenia, i.e. in an international context. Also, the concept of the front page, designed by the visual artist Marija Vauda, rests on the motif of an hourglass, conceived by the author as a symbol of the spillover of energy and the symbiosis of the two cultures and the continuous flow of the historical, spiritual and private time of their representatives. It will appear on the front page of every issue of Slovenika – always the same, yet slightly changed – and it will symbolically draw attention to the different standpoints of the members of the two cultures.

The international Editorial Staff of Slovenika includes both the eminent representatives of the Slovenian minority in Serbia, whose activities have demonstrated their commitment to Slovenian culture and its safeguarding by contributing to a greater knowledge and better understanding of Slovenian culture in Serbia, and experts from Slovenia and Serbia who are connected with the Slovenian culture in this region in one way or another and who can contribute, as great intellectuals and cultural workers, to the quality of our journal.

The journal will have an online and a print version, in two languages, so as to enable authors to express themselves in a language that suits them best. This freedom seems to be even more important having in mind that we, as representatives of a minority, have a special duty to improve intercultural relations and positive dialogue between different cultures. We believe that we will also foster mutual understanding and learn to understand, respect and appreciate each other.

Our goal is to ensure that Slovenika becomes a regular publication, which will feature, in the following issues, papers by outstanding authors, and, more importantly, that it gains a regular readership. We hope to present through our journal the Slovenian minority in Serbia in a new light and we also hope that the journal will eventually become known among readers in Slovenia and Slovenian readers all over the world. We also hope that Slovenika will manage to pave its way and find its place among similar publications.

Saša Verbič
National Council of the
Slovenian National Minority
Belgrade, Serbia

According to the Dictionary of the Slovenian Literary Language, the word slovenika designates ”a book, the publication of Slovenian literary works and works about the Slovenian language and literature”. http://bos.zrc-sazu.si/cgi/a03.exe?name=sskj_testa &expression=slovenika&hs=1