April 21st, 2018, 5:30
After the collapse of the USSR Ukraine faced a decade of significant social change. Since the late 1980s, and particularly after the independence of Ukraine in 1991, with the disappearance of censorship, a whole new generation of writers had emerged, among them Stepan Protsiuk.
Due to increased freedoms and the openness of Ukrainian society to foreign influences, and exposure to literature of other countries, writers began exploring previously forbidden topics such as the forced famine of the 1930s, sexuality, drugs, the darker sides of human life, while employing new writing styles such as postmodernism and neo avant-garde, using profanity, mixing genres, and reflecting on social problems. These elements are found in Protsiuk’s writing as he is considered one of the most controversial intellectuals of contemporary Ukraine. A multi-award-nominated laureate, Protsiuk has authored close to 15 works of literature. His most celebrated pieces include “Romance,” “Sacrifice,” “Totem,” and his renowned collection of essays — “Tightrope Walkers.” In 2010, “The Rose of Ritual Pain” was published as one of the first attempts of serious artistic-psychological comprehension of Vasyl Stefanyk’s figure as a human being and creator. Shortly thereafter, “Under the Wings of the Great Mother” was published. The most recent of the author’s works is “The Grass Cannot Die,” whose moving themes led to the creation of a short film in Ukraine.
The prose in which Protsiuk writes is often not easy, stringing words and thoughts together in a manner that warrants a close, scrutinized reading. Protsiuk has more than once received the criticism of being too much of a naturalist, subject to accusation of excessive openness. He has maneuvered his oeuvre of works into one that both pushes the limits of experimentation and novelty, while simultaneously resting on a profound appreciation of tradition. A few of the writer’s works have been translated to languages including Polish, German, Russian and Azerbaijani.
Presentation in Ukrainian