In Which Estonia Do I Want To Live?

book cover

Editors Margit Sutrop, Marko Ringo, Aire Vaher

Copyreader Inna Lusti

Proofreading Sirje Hiie, Tiia Varol

Designer Merle Moorlat

Published with the support of the Estonian Ministry of Education and Research, and the Office of the President

Eesti Keele Sihtasutus 2007

Language: Estonian

On the 23 February 2007, at the 89th Independence Day reception at the University of Tallinn, President Toomas Hendrik Ilves announced the essay contest “In Which Estonia Do I Want To Live?”. During his speech, he said that Estonia has once again been restored as a nation and taken its place among the Western democracies, but this is not yet the Estonia we would all like to live in. Rather than complaining that this is not precisely the Estonia we wanted, we should talk about which Estonia we do want.

The idea for this essay contest came from the Head of the Centre for Ethics of the University of Tartu, Professor Margit Sutrop. It was discussed by the President’s Academic Advisory Board and its members agreed to judge the contest. The event was also supported by the Office of the President and by the journal Akadeemia.

A total of 326 essays were received, including 115 from primary school students, 86 by high school students and 125 by adults. The authors were from a diverse range of occupations and their ages ranged from seven to ninety-four. They wrote about the environment, education, politics, emigration, alcoholism, equal opportunities and national identity.

The best essay by an adult was published in the journal Akadeemia, and the best by a secondary school student in Eesti Päevaleht. Others were also published in Täheke and Hea Laps. In addition to those selected works, this compilation contains comments by the judges, and a foreword from the organisers.