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Mykola Zharkikh (Kyiv)

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Crimean Tatars in the novel "Pereyaslav Council" by N. Rybak

Nicholas Zharkikh

N. Rybak's novel was launched in 1944 (probably January 8 in the 290th anniversary of Pereiaslav Council) and completed in 1954 – if not on January 8, the same day the 300th anniversary of the Council, all in this moment had not yet fade folk joy on the 300th anniversary of the annexation of Ukraine by Russia. This shows that author was oriented in political situation very well (receive a Stalin Prize – it is no joke). I'm not going to do a full review of the novel, and this consideration probably never be done, because I absolutely can not imagine such criminal act for which the Supreme Court of the USSR could be such a severe punishment, as writing a review. I am interested in partial issue – the image of the Crimean Tatars in this novel, but to understand the attitude to a partial issue, one must first imagine it looks a whole, at least in general terms.

Very easy to understand why the novel consists of two volumes: in the first volume the author shows, in which distress was Ukraine before Pereiaslav Council, and the second – in which brilliantly situation it came after the council. The main idea of the novel, if not rightly (it seems to me that can be discussed), it is certainly well-intended. And as is well known that for works of socialist realism well-intended basic idea is more important than the correctness of this idea, the novel had come out vivid and convincing. If he went dim and weak, the blame for this solely the author's personal qualities, namely its deepest, does not disguised and not covered by writer's unfitness. Correlating the magnitude of this hack with volume of novel (77 – seventy seven! – printed sheets; I recall that "War and Peace" by Leo Tolstoy took 94 sheets), unwittingly begin to respect Stalin's falcons.

Indeed, it is necessary to have personal data of Ilia Muromets to master such a mass of discarded paper, having for that not least natural data. One say to make sure that Dostoyevsky was the writer, rather read five pages of any of his novel. I read all 970 pages of the novel by N. Rybak and absolutely firmly convinced that he is not writer, but simply Stalin's falcon, rogue from literature which came as a publicity writer midst of the public, which considered T.D. Lysenko a biologist, A.A. Zhdanov – a music critic and F.Engels – a philosopher.

The author and his novel

Cult of Personality

The distribution of characters

Worldview of the author

Crimean Tatars

Crimean–Tatar restrictaza

Tatars Customs

Tatars Politics

Enslaved girls


So, all that N.S.Rybak told us about the Tatars can easily derive by a purely logical way of what he was Stalinist falcon and the rogue from literature. Even reading the novel for this is not necessary, not just to develop statistical methods.

How do we now summarize our observations on the novel, reveal that chromosome, in which encoded "Soviet writer" N. Rybak, along with his "Pereyaslav Council"? I think that this primary element from which in good broth developed our author, was fear. Afraid and miserable people inhabit our country in those early years of heroic, and so scared and worthless for the most part were their writers. All the world is relative, and afraid writer on the background of more frightened looks winner, sinister in the background even more vile, wicked on the back of more wicked – knight. Therefore, these writers claim to the title of the spiritual leaders of the cattle were not released unacceptable – some even called each other "bearers" and "petrels", and no one resented, not cattle complained that they are just sheep, only slightly swift.

If the author was not afraid, he could enclose his soul from the pressure of propaganda machine; if the author was not afraid, he could write what he thinks, not that insists upon the authorities; if the author was not afraid, thought it would have flowed smoothly and don't break at each step, the images would have imagined as a whole, not as fragments, the authorities was not a center of the world, torture would be ugly, spies would not cause sympathy, Jews received a permit to the pages of the novel and the Tatars would not look beast-like…

It is not hard to write skillfully, if we do not fear. Try it, gentlemen – do not regret it!


Full text in ukrainian language.