PSNH Presents on February 25th @ 11 AM EST – Voice in a Shattered World: Ukrainian Women Writers on War and Displacement

Join Poetry Society of New Hampshire for this important online Zoom event featuring the voices of five Ukrainian women writers.

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Olesya Mamchych

Olesya Mamchych was born in Kyiv in 1981. In 2003, she graduated from the  Taras Shevchenko National University of Kyiv, where she studied creative writing. Her first poem appeared in the children’s magazine Sonyashnik in 1992, and her first collection, Perekotybole, was published in 2004. Her other two collections, The Cover and The Sun on Maternity Leave were both published in 2014. Olesya Mamchych has also published her poetry translations from Polish, Byelorussian, and Lithuanian. She was the recipient of the Blagovist Award in 2006, and the Urba-Crossing Award in 2014. She is currently living in a creative commune and working on an alternative school education project.

Yulia Berezhko-Kaminska

Yulia Berezhko-Kaminska is a Ukrainian poet, journalist, editor, and the Secretary of the National Union of Writers of Ukraine in the field of the promotion of young writers. She is the author of eight volumes of original poetry and her work has been awarded a succession of literary prizes. She was born and grew up in the village of Chornobaivka in the Kherson region of Ukraine. More recently, her permanent residence has been in Bucha in the Kyiv region. Following the Russian invasion of Ukraine in February 2022, which within days particularly affected Bucha and other settlements north of Kyiv, she transferred, as a refugee, to Kraków, Poland.

Iryna Feofanova

Iryna Feofanova is a script and fiction writer born in Kyiv in 1985. She has a degree in psychology, has worked on TV as a journalist in documentaries and reality shows, and is the author of 20+ scripts for TV films and series. Up to February 24, 2022, Iryna was dwelling with her husband and little daughter in Irpin. She viewed herself as successful in her career and happy in family life. However, the Russians have rascally attacked the independent Ukraine and ruined her happiness; Iryna and her daughter had to flee to the west of Ukraine and then to Poland, while her husband has joined the Military Forces of Ukraine and has been fighting the Russian invaders since March 2022.
From the first days of the war, Iryna has been writing – first notes in her diary, and then drama and prose pieces. Writing now is a kind of psychotherapy. As Iryna words it, you take your pain out into the text – and you feel relief. This way, mainly for the sake of relief, Iryna has written several plays (The Outlander, The Flawed People, Confession of the Military Wife). On October 27, 2022, there was an opening night of War, Kitchen and Eight Strangers in Chernihiv Regional Drama Theater.
In summer 2022, during the residency program of the Book Institute in Krakow, Iryna wrote her first book – a collection of short stories entitled A Foe – a Friend – a Family. In her writing, Iryna most often raises the problems of displaced persons and refugees, challenges the military wives face, and the adaptation of children to wartime reality. The workshop with the poet Ewa Chrusciel, arranged by the Book Institute in Krakow, prompted Iryna to write her first poem, The Hatred. She makes no secret that it is the hatred that she feels towards the Russians, having ruined her city of Irpin, damaged her house, smashed all her dreams and future prospects. Now Iryna lives in Irpin with her daughter, and struggles to put her life together: patches the holes in her house, waits for her husband to return from the war, and believes in the victory. Ukraine is the good and the good always defeats the evil.

Nataliya Belchenko

Nataliya Belchenko was born in 1973 in Kyiv, is an Ukrainian poetess and a translator (Ukrainian, Polish, Belarusian and Russian).. Belchenko graduated with honors from the Department of Philology from the Taras Shevchenko National University of Kyiv, has worked in the Institute of Linguistics of the National Academy of Sciences of Ukraine named after O. O. Potebnia, and has scientific publications on mythopoetics. Nataliya is a member of the Ukrainian PEN. She is the author of nine collections of poems and the winner of many awards and prizes, including: the Hubert Burda Literary Prize (Germany, 2000), the Literary Prize named after Mykola Ushakov (2006), the Prize named after Leonid Vysheslavskyi „Poet’s Planet“ (2014), the „Metaphora“ translation award (2014, 2018), and for the collection „Signs And Treasures“, she received the award of the Foundation named after Lesia and Petro Kovalevs at the Union of Ukrainian Women of America (2019).Belchenko’s poems are translated into German, French, English, Bulgarian, Korean, Dutch, Polish, Lithuanian, Latvian, Hebrew, Spanish, Hungarian, and Italian; they are published in Ukraine and abroad. She is one of the winners of the international contest for the best translation of Wislawa Szymborska’s poetry into the Russian, Belarusian, and Ukrainian languages (the Ukrainian language, Wroclaw, 2015). She worked at the Ventspils House residency for writers and translators (2016, 2018, 2021, Latvia) and is a Gaude Polonia scholarship holder (2017). Nataliya was a resident of the Wislawa Szymborska Foundation and the Institute of Literature in Krakow (2022).

Olena Zamoyska

Olena Zamoyska (born 21 September 1973) is an Ukrainian writer, local history researcher, and translator from English and Polish into Ukrainian. Amongst the many fiction and nonfiction books, she has translated works by Ayn Rand, Mary Westmacott aka Agatha Christie and F. Scott Fitzgerald. Zamoyska also translated the politically-edged drama «Pentecost», by playwright David Edgar, which was staged by First Ukrainian Theater for Children and Youth and won the 2018 «Taking the Stage» competition, supported by the British Council in Ukraine. At present, Zamoyska is part of the residency program of the Institute of Literature in Krakow (Poland), where she is working on a fiction-documentary story under the working title What the monastery chronicles are not silent about, based on the authentic documents of the Basilian monastery in Krystynopol (now Chervonohrad, Ukraine).

Hałyna Tkaczuk

Hałyna Tkaczuk is a poet and prose writer, as well as the author of over ten children’s books. She’s a graduate of the Kyiv Institute of Philology, and has published a bilingual collection of poems, „Я та інші красуні/ Ja i inne piękności” [I and Other Beauties], translated by Aneta Kamińska. Her poems have been included in various anthologies and Ukrainian and Polish literary journals.

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