People of the Decade

Victoria Amelina, Serhiy Zhadan, and seven other Ukrainian writers were honored as ‘People of the Decade’ by NV magazine


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The popular Ukrainian magazine NV compiled a list of 100 Ukrainians who have shaped and led the country forward since 2014 and the onset of the Russo-Ukrainian War. 


Prominent Ukrainians were selected in six categories: “Military and Volunteers,” “Culture,” “Society,” “State Figures,” “Businessmen,” and “Sports.”


Among the twenty-two cultural figures on the list, nine were the writers: 


Victoria Amelina (1986–2023): writer, volunteer, activist, and a member of the human rights organization Truth Hounds. Victoria Amelina tragically passed away on July 1 as a result of serious injuries sustained during the Russian missile strike on Kramatorsk;


Sophia Andrukhovych: a writer, translator, and one of the most influential authors in Ukrainian prose; her award-winning 800-page historical novel “Amadoka” will be published by Simon & Schuster;


Stanislav Aseyev: a writer, journalist, human rights activist, and laureate of the Shevchenko National Prize (2021) who spent two years in Russian captivity and currently serves in the Ukrainian Armed Forces


Natalia Vorozhbyt: a writer, screenwriter, director, and laureate of the Shevchenko National Prize (2022) who also wrote scripts for most popular domestic films and TV series; 


Serhiy Zhadan: one of the most translated Ukrainian writers, award-winning author of novels and poems, international public figure, and volunteer; Zhadan also topped the rating of cultural figures in German media in 2022. The editorial board of NV also listed him among the top 5 Ukrainians, and he received the most votes.


Andrey Kurkov: an internationally renowned Ukrainian writer who has sold over 75,000 book copies in a single year. He has placed as a finalist for the International Booker Prize twice and is a former PEN Ukrainian president.


Oleg Sentsov: film director, writer, and former Kremlin political prisoner who now serves in the Ukrainian Armed Forces as an assault group commander in the assault group of the 47th Separate Mechanized Brigade “Magura.” His book “Chronicle of a Hunger Strike: 4-1/2 Steps” will be published this year by Deep Vellum (USA).


Iryna Tsilyk: a film director, writer, and laureate of the Shevchenko National Prize (2023), Ukraine’s ambassador to the world; her debut feature film “Rock Paper Grenade,” based on a book by Artem Chekh, was released on April 11, 2024.


Artem Chekh: a renowned Ukrainian author and soldier serving in the Ukrainian Armed Forces. Chekh just announced his new novel about a former Ukrainian serf who, after the Crimean War, ends up in America and fights on the side of the North in their Civil War (“The Song of the Open Road” by Meridian Czernowitz).


In the Society category, among others, judges have selected historians Yaroslav Hrytsak and Serhii Plokhii (the author of “The Gates of Europe” and “Russo-Ukrainian War”), the First Lady of Ukraine Olena Zelenska, chef Yevhen Klopotenko, a well-known promoter of modern Ukrainian cuisine, and Maksym Butkevych, BBC journalist and human rights activist now detained as a political prisoner in Russia.


47 experts from various fields nominated 175 individuals before identifying an additional 207 candidates from a public website survey. The editorial board of NV compiled the final list of 100 Ukrainians. You can find the full list of its members here (in Ukrainian).


RELATED: 13 Ukrainian books are announced to be translated into English this year as part of the Translate Ukraine Program


Copyediting: Ben Angel, Terra Friedman King

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