Andrii Kurkov

Andrii Kurkov: There will be no discussion between Ukrainian and Russian writers as long as there is war


You see an error in the text - select the fragment and press Ctrl + Enter

President of Pen Club Ukraine Andrii Kurkov answered the letter of the German PEN Club, which stated that ignoring Russian culture is «a victory of madness». His answer was published on the official site of Ukrainian PEN.

Kurkov suggested creating an «allowlist» of Russian writers and cultural figures who opposed the war against Ukraine: «We should support those who support us».


He also claimed that «blocklisting» is not the best option.


Kurkov announced that despite international organizations’ offers to hold online discussions on Ukrainian problems and a war against representatives of Russian culture, there would be no discussion between Russian and Ukrainian writers.


«I didn’t find any information about Soviet and German writers’ reconciliation during World War II. That didn’t happen», – the President of the Ukrainian Pen Club said.


He pointed out that no one burns Tolstoy, Pushkin or Dostoyevsky’s books here in Ukraine; moreover, no one burns any books here. Instead, he says,  Russians are destroying and bombarding Ukrainian museums, churches, and memorials, including Babyn Yar and Bydynok Slovo, a building-monument of Ukrainian writers of 1920-1930s, killed by NKVD.


«If you want to read about and to know more about the mysterious Russian soul, continue! If I were you, I would read books about Ukraine, its citizens of different nations’ thoughts and lives, their dreams, the realization of which depends on you, the citizens of the European Union and the democratic world», – Andriy Kurkov stressed.


Lately, the German PEN Club has expressed concern about the «victory of madness» if the world boycotts the Russians. The statement also said that the enemy [of Ukraine and other democracies] was Putin, not Pushkin, Tolstoy or Akhmatova. In addition, the German PEN Club pointed out that they support «all people in all countries who want to live in peace, freedom and dignity».


Also, read about Cultural Disaster: What Ukrainian Sites Were Destroyed by Russian Occupants