Against the background of the war in Ukraine tonight we discuss classical Ukrainian literature with Elena Oranskaia and Dmytro Lytvynenko. Elena Oranskaia argues that classical Ukrainian literatuur from Skovoroda to Lesya Ukraïnka was ahead of its time.
It was an avant-garde which warned us about the problems we are now beginning to face. The common thread is respect for living beings, nature and the environment and the place of humans in the world. Dmytro Lytvynenko stresses the humor in Ukrainian literature. In novels like Dead Souls of Gogol, Master and Margarita of Bulgakov and Isaak Babels Odessa Novels – which he considers as stolen by the Russian Empire – you find great examples of humor. The secret for working with humor is that you need to feel freedom inside. And Ukraine is a nation of freedom.
Dmytro Lytvynenko is an Ukrainian TV journalist with 25 years of experience. He was born in the Donetsk Region and graduated from the Russian Rostov on Don University on Russian literature and journalism.
Elena Oranskaia is a philologist and studied Slavic Languages at Shevchenko University. She lives in the Netherlands for 29 years and is founder of the Art-East+Art-West Foundation. She is an organizer and curator of projects that perform Ukrainian design in Europe, including Ukraine: Affair with Earth in Eindhoven.