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Articles tagged "Ukrainian Literature"

Buying Time

As a writer of science fiction in the Ukrainian language, Taras Antypovych is a relatively rare phenomenon. In a country where the vast majority of readers can read in Russian, and where the market in genre fiction is overwhelmingly dominated by imports from Russia, it is difficult for unknown Ukrainian-language writers to gain a foothold in this field. For Ukrainian writers who are able, the commercial temptations of the wider Russian-language market, covering most of the post-Soviet...

From the Archive: Girls, and Women

Oksana Zabuzhko's "Girls" portrays a passionate adolescent friendship that explodes into more. In the hothouse of a Ukrainian elementary school, the charismatic Effie seduces the studious Darka; decades later, the adult Darka revisits, and interrogates, her obsession. Zabuzhko's parenthical asides deftly portray the shifting perspectives of girlhood memories and adult reconsiderations of Effie's duplicity, Darka's revenge, and the inevitable, shattering ending. In Askold...

Estuary

Knee deep in mud. For centuries, we have stood where the bog waters suck. In the grasp of the inanimate, there are no straight lines. A sack race is good for a laugh. And like the Lord's own trumpets, funnels multiply in the muck. Once again, darling, yours is a resinous, intimate whisper. Once again, I'll bring you pelts and sprigs of heather. But it's all a whim of the estuary, spidering thin borders. By dawn, it looks like a golden wand. At night, a...

from A Short History of Dance

Listen, child, to a wise old wolf: in dance everything has its own meaning. Here we've stopped— we haven't touched, yet our breath dances in a common rhythm, always stronger and faster. We began with the foxtrot—but can you feel the pulsing of tango? Listen for a moment to the echoing stillness, and now hold out your palm, let's find the pressure points, and from here on our history begins, from here rush rivers of mania, a yellow heat flares in the red eyes of...

Girls

Darka saw her in the trolley, the sweaty, June-soaked trolley, brimming with people and their smells: sweet, almost corpselike, female, heavy, equestrian, yet oddly palatable, and even stimulating, sexual, distinctly male. Suddenly all the smells switched off, leaving only a girlish profile on the sunny side of the car, angular as a Braque: abrupt, soaring cheekbones, a fine pug nose, mulatto lips, and a sharp, childlike fist of a chin—a capricious, fragile geometry which...

from Songs of Friendship and Love

Snoopy Goes to Kasimov I used to torture myself over the question, I was baffled by it: to what could I attribute the incontrovertible fact of my total lack of literary talent? A fluke of nature? Blind chance? Genetic aberration? And this in a family tree, mind you, that's produced five writers minimum, two of which, in the opinion of their contemporaries, made a sizable contribution to the treasurehouse of Russian belles-lettres. My grandfather, who during his lifetime was honored...
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