Demolition of monuments to Alexander Pushkin in Ukraine

An empty pedestal of the "sun of Russian poetry" in Ternopil

The demolition of monuments to Alexander Pushkin in Ukraine started during the Russo-Ukrainian War. During the 2022 Russian invasion of Ukraine it has become a widespread phenomenon and dubbed by Ukrainians Pushkinopad (Пушкінопад), a pun literally translated as "Pushkinfall". This wave of dismantling is connected with the process of derussification in Ukraine.


According to Volodymyr Yermolenko, Russian literature has been a vehicle of the country’s imperial project and nationalist world-view.[1] Pushkin's poem Poltava recounts the revolt of Ukrainian Cossack commander Ivan Mazepa against Tsar Peter the Great by adopting the Russian point of view and portraying Mazepa as a lecherous traitor.[1] Following the Russian invasion of Ukraine in February 2022, Pushkin's situation turned out to be quite similar to the destruction of monuments to Lenin known as Leninopad.[2] The phenomenon was dubbed "Pushkinopad" (Пушкінопад) by Ukrainians, a pun literally translated as "Pushkinfall", with the coinage of "-пад" being akin to English words suffixed with "fall" as in "waterfall", "snowfall", etc.

A bronze bust of Pushkin was removed from Glory Square (Ploshha Slavy) in Kyiv. Installed in 1899, it was the oldest monument to Pushkin in the city.

The first event that became widely known was the dismantling of the monument to Pushkin in Mukachevo on April 7, 2022.[3] Monuments to the Russian poet were dismantled in Uzhhorod[4] and Ternopil on April 9.[5][6] Serhiy Nadal, mayor of Ternopil, commented:

The crimes of Russians against the Ukrainian people: murder, torture of people, rape of women and children, destruction of Ukrainian cities have crossed out the entire culture of the Russian people. There is no explanation for these crimes. They leave us no choice. Everything Russian must be dismantled. Including the monument to the Russian writer.[7]

On March 22, 2022, a resident of Ternopil painted a Pushkin monument red and wrote "stop war" on it. With his action he drew attention to the need to dismantle the monument. In Ternopil, the monument to the poet was erected in 1961. The first initiatives to demolish it appeared in 2014, after the start of the Russo-Ukrainian War.[8]

On April 7, a monument to Pushkin was demolished in the city of Mukachevo. The very next day, the Uzhhorod City Council also decided to dismantle the monument to Alexander Pushkin[9]

On April 11, 2022, a bust of Pushkin was dismantled in the village of Zabolotivtsi, Lviv Oblast.[10]

On April 19, 2022, in Kropyvnytskyi, they proposed to remove the monument to Pushkin, which currently stands near the Pedagogical University.[11] The monument was dismantled on July 8, 2022.[12]

On April 26, 2022, a monument to Alexander Pushkin was torn down in the village of Pushkino in the Berehove Raion of the Zakarpattia Oblast, and meetings began to rename the village.[13]

On April 28, 2022, a monument to Pushkin was dismantled in Konotop. Interestingly, the head was torn off during the dismantling of the monument.[14]

In Chernihiv a Pushkin monument was destroyed on 30 April 2022.[15]

On May 5, 2022, a memorial plaque to Pushkin was dismantled in Vinnytsia.[16]

On May 8, 2022, the bust was dismantled in Deliatyn, Ivano-Frankivsk Oblast.[17]

On May 13, 2022, a bust of Pushkin was dismantled from the entrance gate of the Oleksandriia Dendrological Park in Bila Tserkva.[citation needed]

On May 21, 2022 in Mykolaiv a monument to Pushkin was dismantled.[18]

On June 1, 2022, a monument to Alexander Pushkin was damaged in Nikopol.[19]

On June 3, 2022, the "Ukrainian People's House" society proposed to remove the bust of Pushkin from the building of the Olha Kobylyanska Drama Theater and replace it with the bust of Yury Fedkovych. The director of the theater supported the proposal but stressed that all legal requirements and regulations had to be met before removing the bust.[20]

During a meeting on June 16, a working group of the Ministry of Education and Science of Ukraine decided to remove more than 40 works by Soviet and Russian authors, including Alexander Pushkin, from school textbooks.[21]

A bust of the Russian poet Alexander Pushkin was dismantled in Zaporizhzhia. The bust made of forged copper stood in the city for more than 20 years and was dismantled on the evening of July 26 with the permission of the mayor's office.[22]

On September 1, 2022, a bust of Pushkin was dismantled in Kyiv on the territory of gymnasium No. 153 (named after Pushkin).[23]

On October 11, 2022, unknown persons dismantled the second bust of Pushkin in front of the National Transport University in Kyiv. The co-founder of the "Decommunization Ukraine" project said that the dismantling was dedicated to Lieutenant of the Armed Forces of Ukraine Denys Antipov, alias "Buk" - a well-known public activist, teacher of the Korean language at Taras Shevchenko Kyiv National University, who had died in May 2022 in a battle with Russian invaders.[24]

The bust of Pushkin, which stood on Poetry Maidan in Kharkiv, was dismantled on November 9, 2022 and sent for safekeeping. The Kharkiv City Council stated that this monument, and possibly others, should be preserved, but the residents will decide this issue in peacetime.[25][26]

On November 9, 2022, the monument to Pushkin in Kharkiv was dismantled.[27]

On November 11, 2022, a monument to Pushkin was dismantled in Zhytomyr.[28]

On November 11, 2022, the monument to Pushkin in the city of Zhmerynka was dismantled and disappeared.

On November 16, 2022, Pushkin Avenue in Dnipro was renamed Lesya Ukrainka Avenue.[29]

On November 17, 2022, the statue of Pushkin was dismantled in the city of Chernivtsi.[30]

On November 20, 2022, unknown persons overthrew the bust of Pushkin in the city of Nikopol.[31]

On November 21, 2022, the monument to Pushkin in the city of Kremenchuk was dismantled.[32]

On November 29, 2022, a memorial plaque to Pushkin was dismantled in the city of Mykolaiv.[33]

On November 29, 2022, a monument to Pushkin was dismantled in the city of Ananiv.[34]

On December 16, 2022, a monument to Pushkin was dismantled in Dnipro on Lesya Ukrainka Avenue (the street that was called Pushkin Avenue one month earlier).[29]

See also


  1. ^ a b Yermolenko, Volodymyr (25 June 2022). "From Pushkin to Putin: Russian Literature's Imperial Ideology". Foreign Policy. Retrieved 2022-11-13.
  2. ^ Кокотюха, Андрій (2022-04-23). "Як Пушкін в Україні став аналогом Леніна". (in Ukrainian). Retrieved 2022-04-23.
  3. ^ "У Мукачеві демонтували пам'ятник Пушкіну" [The monument to Pushkin was dismantled in Mukachevo]. Ukrinform (in Ukrainian). 7 April 2022. Retrieved 2022-04-11.
  4. ^ Береза, Антуан (9 April 2022). "Дерусифікація триває: в Ужгороді демонтували пам'ятник Пушкіну (відео)" [Derussification continues: Pushkin monument dismantled in Uzhhorod (video)]. УНІАН.
  5. ^ "У Тернополі демонтували пам'ятник Пушкіну – мер" [Pushkin monument dismantled in Ternopil - mayor]. Радіо Свобода (in Ukrainian). 9 April 2022. Retrieved 2022-04-11.
  6. ^ "У Тернополі демонтували пам'ятник Пушкіну" [Monument to Pushkin dismantled in Ternopil]. Ukrinform (in Ukrainian). 9 April 2022. Retrieved 2022-04-11.
  7. ^ "У Тернополі через звірства росіян таки демонтували пам'ятник Пушкіну: фото" [Pushkin monument dismantled in Ternopil because of Russian atrocities: photos]. 9 April 2022.
  8. ^ Бугаєнко, Тетяна (9 April 2022). "У Тернополі демонтували пам'ятник Алєксандру Пушкіну" [Monument to Alexander Pushkin dismantled in Ternopil]. ZAXID.NET.
  9. ^ Bugayenko, Tetyana (9 April 2022). "У Тернополі демонтували пам'ятник Алєксандру Пушкіну" [A monument to Alexander Pushkin was dismantled in Ternopil]. ZAXID.NET (in Ukrainian). Retrieved 2022-11-13.
  10. ^ "У селі на Львівщині демонтують пам'ятник Пушкіну" [A monument to Pushkin is dismantled in a village in the Lviv Region]. April 11, 2022.
  11. ^ "У Кропивницькому запропонували прибрати пам'ятник Пушкіну" [In Kropyvnytskyi, it was proposed to remove the monument to Pushkin]. Гречка - інформаційний портал кіровоградщини (in Ukrainian). April 19, 2022. Retrieved 2022-04-23.
  12. ^ "Як у Кропивницькому бюст Пушкіну знімали (ВІДЕО)" [How a bust of Pushkin was filmed in Kropyvnytskyi (VIDEO)]. Гречка. July 9, 2022.
  13. ^ "На Закарпатті "впав" вже шостий пам'ятник Пушкіну. Еспресо.Захід" [In Transcarpathia, the sixth monument to Pushkin "fell"]. (in Ukrainian). April 26, 2022. Retrieved 2022-04-28.
  14. ^ "Під час демонтажу відірвало голову: у Конотопі знесли пам'ятник Пушкіну (фото)" [A HEAD WAS TORN OFF DURING DISMANTLING: A MONUMENT TO PUSHKIN WAS DEMOLISHED IN KONOTOP (PHOTO)]. ТСН.ua (in Ukrainian). 2022-04-28. Retrieved 2022-04-28.
  15. ^ Chernihiv was de-Russified by Pushkin, Ukrayinska Pravda (April 30, 2022) Monument to Zoya Kosmodemyanskaya was demolished in Chernihiv, Suspilne (April 21, 2022 (in Ukrainian)
  17. ^ На Прикарпатті демонтували погруддя Пушкіна та комісара Руднєва
  18. ^ "У Миколаєві зусиллями невідомих зник пам'ятник Пушкіну (фото)". УНІАН (in Ukrainian). Retrieved 2022-05-21.
  19. ^ "У Нікополі осквернили пам'ятник Пушкіну". Общественная Организация "Прихист" (in Russian). Retrieved 2022-06-01.
  20. ^ "Пушкіна на Федьковича: у Чернівцях пропонують замінити погруддя на будівлі драмтеатру" [From Pushkin to Fedkovych: in Chernivtsi, they propose to replace the bust on the drama theater building]. 3 June 2022.
  21. ^ "Геть з класу! Зі шкільної програми вилучать більше 40 творів Пушкіна, Толстого, Булгакова та інших російських і радянських авторів". (in Ukrainian). Retrieved 2022-06-17.
  22. ^ "У Запоріжжі демонтували пам'ятник Пушкіну" [A monument to Pushkin was dismantled in Zaporizhzhia]. (in Ukrainian). 27 July 2022. Retrieved 2022-07-28.
  23. ^ Борзенко, Тимофій (1 September 2022). "У київській гімназії 153 імені Пушкіна знесли погруддя Пушкіна" [Pushkin's bust was demolished at the 153 Pushkin Gymnasium in Kyiv].
  24. ^ "У Києві демонтували один із пам'ятників Пушкіну, залишилося ще вісім об'єктів" [One of Pushkin's monuments dismantled in Kyiv, eight more objects left]. 12 October 2022. Retrieved 2022-11-13.
  25. ^ "The monument to Pushkin in Kharkiv has been dismantled, its fate will be determined by the townspeople after the victory - the city council". Інтерфакс-Україна (in Ukrainian). Retrieved 2022-11-09.
  26. ^ "Pushkin's bust was dismantled in Kharkiv". Українська правда (in Ukrainian). Retrieved 2022-11-09.
  27. ^ "Як демонтували погруддя Пушкіна у Харкові — фото і відео міськради" [How Pushkin's bust was dismantled in Kharkiv — photo and video of the city council]. November 9, 2022.
  28. ^ "Monument to Russian poet Pushkin dismantled in Zhytomyr". New Voice of Ukraine. 11 November 2022. Retrieved 2022-11-13.
  29. ^ a b "A monument to Pushkin was dismantled in Dnipro (photo)". Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty (in Ukrainian). 16 December 2022. Retrieved 16 December 2022.
  30. ^ Спатарь, Наталія (2022-11-17). "У Чернівцях демонтували пам'ятник Пушкіну — що відомо". Суспільне | Новини (in Ukrainian). Retrieved 2022-11-17.
  31. ^ "У Нікополі впав пам'ятник поету". (in Russian). Retrieved 2022-11-21.
  32. ^ "У Кременчуці знесли пам'ятник Пушкіну". Українська правда. Retrieved 2022-11-21.
  33. ^ "У центрі Миколаєва демонтували меморіальну дошку Пушкіну". Українська правда (in Russian). 2022-11-29.
  34. ^ "Декомунізація. Україна. - Юхууууууу! Ананьїв, Одещина. Демонтовано погруддя Пушкіну. Далі буде. | Facebook". (in Ukrainian). Retrieved 2022-11-29.

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