As you know, central to Apofenie's mission statement is the need to promote underrepresented literary voices. With this in mind, the editors have chosen to devote an entire issue per year to the translation of contemporary literature from a country that is not (but should be) widely-read in the English-speaking world.
Our journey begins in Ukraine. Since the Revolution of Dignity in 2014, many people in the English-speaking world are curious to learn more about the country, but they are limited by a language barrier and myopic Western media coverage. We believe that it is important to celebrate Ukraine's rich literary culture and heritage, especially in a time of war and long overdue political and socio-economic reforms. Artists play an important role in navigating the post-Soviet legacy and defining the country's future. The national anthem "Ще не вмерли України ні слава ні воля" ("Ukraine has not yet perished") is based on a poem written in 1862 by the poet Pavlo Chubynsky - undoubtedly, the soul of Ukraine is the soul of a poet.
The ten authors and one photographer featured in this issue are but a fraction of the talented artists in Ukraine today, and they represent a diversity of artistic approaches and life experiences. (You can read more about the authors here).Two of the authors live beyond Ukraine's borders - one in the United States, the other in Austria. Four of the authors and the photographer are from Chernivtsi, hometown of the great poet Paul Celan and with a rich literary history of its own. Two of the authors come from the Luhansk region, where the aforementioned war for Ukraine continues into its fourth year. Despite these differences, all of them share a boundless curiosity and profound respect for the dignity of the human spirit. Enjoy, and fall in love with Ukrainian literature!