Photo: Dom

Photo: Dom

«I love the city and I do not see myself out of it»

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What was Kyiv like 100 years ago.

Kyiv became one of the heroes of Valerian Pidmohylnyi’s novel «The City». This was the first Ukrainian urban novel, which should be read by everyone who lives in Kyiv or wants to move here.

Podmohylnyi explained: «I wrote «The City» because I love the city and I do not see myself or my work outside of it. I also wrote to bring the city as close as possible to the Ukrainian psyche, to focus on it.»

In his novel, Podmohylnyi perfectly wrote out and multifacetedly portrayed the simple-minded peasant Stepan Radchenko in the big city.

The author resorts to detailed descriptions of Kyiv, its streets, squares, even the interiors of the apartments of all the heroes of the plot. He describes Podil, Nyzhnii Val. His hero often walks through the Old Town, Khreshchatyi Yar, likes to visit Saint Volodymyr Hill. From the work, you can understand that there was a tram track on Prorizna street (at that time – Sverdlova street).

For Valerian Pidmohylnyi, Kyiv was the cradle of civilization, the primordial center of culture, science, and education. On the pages of the novel «The City», such prominent sights as St. Andrew’s Church, Askold’s Tomb, Kyiv-Pechersk Lavra, where the tours to the caves with the relics of saints were guided even at that time, Volodymyr’s and Sophia’s Cathedrals, the Golden Gate, the Tsar’s Garden, the Historical Museum, and State Academic Theater of Opera and Ballet appear repeatedly.

The novel was first published in Kharkiv in 1928. In 1934, when the repressions against the intelligentsia began, Valerian Pidmohylnyi was arrested and exiled to Solovki. The novel «City» was banned, like other writer’s works, until 1989.

Valerian Podmohylnyi was shot in 1937 along with other martyrs of the regime. This is how the Soviet authorities celebrated the 20th anniversary of the October coup…


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Щодня наша команда працює над тим, щоб інформувати Вас про найважливіше в місті та області. За роки своєї праці ми довели, що «Твоє місто» - це медіа, якому справді можна довіряти. Долучіться до Спільноти Прихильників «Твого міста» та збережіть незалежне медіа для громади. Кожен внесок має значення!