Anthology “Poroda”: a collection of literary works to show the real face of Donbas


Anthology “Poroda” is a new collection of literary works by 63 authors from Donetsk and Luhansk regions. It will be presented to the public at the Lviv Publisher’s Forum. “In this book, there will be nothing about tycoons, separatism, biased attitude to Ukraine, depressive miners – things that we used to hear about Donbas. In contrary, here you can find Ukrainian literature and love to Ukraine, the Donbas that is unknown to people, or maybe is consciously ignored. People are already tired of a call ‘to hear Donbas’. Well, if you don’t want to, don’t listen to it, but at least you must know what Donbas looks like. And the best way to get this knowledge is to read the writers from the region – they don’t have to lie, the same can’t be said about politicians,” noted  Serhiy Zhadan, writer and translator, member of the Editorial Board of Anthology “Poroda”, announcing presentation of the anthology at a press-briefing at Ukraine Crisis Media Center.

The collection includes works of classic authors, such as Volodymyr Sosiura and Vasyl Stus, as well as contemporary writers. One of the authors represented there is Ihor Kozlovskyi, currently held as a hostage by Russia-backed militants. There is also a piece of yet unpublished novel by Irene Rozdobydko, dedicated to John Huges, the founder of the city of Donetsk. The foreword was written by a prominent Ukrainian writer Ivan Dziuba. “We wanted to give the floor to various generation of the literature […] The same can be said about genres: here you can find prose, poetry and drama, a numerous collection in one binding,” noted Stanislav Fedorchuk, project leader of the publication of the Anthology of Ukrainian Literature “Poroda”, Chairman of the Board of the NGO “Ukrainian People’s Council of Donetsk and Luhansk Region”.

There are works both in Ukrainian and in Russian. “There are authors who write in Russian. However, they represent Ukrainian culture, because they associate or had been associating themselves with Ukraine,” says Yuriy Bedryk, poet, translator, editor-in-chief of Publishing House “Legend”.

The title “Poroda”, with its ambiguous meaning in Ukrainian (“rock” or “nature/temper/spirit”), refers to the situation of internally displaced persons. “The rock is not valuable for the coal industry, and IDPs are sometimes treated as not valuable people. These connotations altogether show the situation of those who left their homes in Donetsk and Luhansk regions. Some people have a biased attitude to IDPs, however, they might be best of all people in Donbas,” noted Mykyta Hryhorov, poet, translator, one of the compilers of the anthology.

The anthology is published in 2000 samples. One thousand will be passed as a gift to libraries, universities and cultural foundations, another one will be distributed through bookstores.