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Two more Ukrainian cities dismantle monuments to Pushkin, breaking ties with imperial past, after Ukrainian writer Zhadan made selfie in front of them

More monuments to Pushkin were dismantled in Ukraine, in particular in Kharkiv on 9 November and in Zhytomyr on 11 November. As Ukrainian philosopher Taras Liutui asked rhetorically a few days before, “why there are 200 monuments to Pushkin in Ukraine and zero to Kant? Because to install the latter one has to think by their own mind.” Monuments to Pushkin became a symbol of Ukraine’s former belonging to the Russian empire, just as monuments to Lenin were a symbol of the USSR’s past. Lenin was massively dismantled after the 2014 revolution of dignity while Pushkin was after the 2022 Russian full-scale invasion, along with other symbols of the imperial past.

Pushkin monuments disappear from Ukrainian streets following Lenin, as decolonization is underway

Before the monument to Pushkin was dismantled in Kharkiv, Ukraine’s one of the most known writers Serhiy Zhadan made a selfie in front of the monument, saying “I do not hint at anything and not to call for anything.” After the monument was dismantled, he shared the video and wrote “So, I’m not related to this.” Finally, a day before the monument in Zhytomyr was dismantled, Zhadan took a selfie in front of it, writing: “It’s Zhytomyr, just in case.” After this monument was also dismantled, many people started asking Zhadan in comments to come to their cities where Pushkin still stays and make a selfie.

 

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