Nyzhankivsky, Bohdan

Nyzhankivsky, Bohdan [Нижанківський, Богдан; Nyžankivs’kyj] (pseud: Бабай; Babai), b 24 November 1909 in Zolochiv, Galicia, d 18 January 1986 in Detroit. Writer; son of Amvrosii Nyzhankivsky; brother of Dariia Nyzhankivska-Snihurovych. After graduating from a commercial school (1929) he worked for the Tsentrosoiuz union of co-operatives and contributed to Novyi chas, Dilo, Nazustrich, Ukraïns’ki visty, Sluzhbovyk, the weekly Nedilia, and other Lviv periodicals. He worked for Lviv Radio (1940–1) and then, until 1944, was an editor in the Lviv office of Krakivs’ki visti and wrote scripts for the Veselyi Lviv theater. As a postwar refugee in Munich he was an editor of Ukraïns’ka trybuna and Arka. After emigrating to Detroit he contributed regularly to the satirical magazine Lys Mykyta, under his pseudonym, and acquired a reputation as a master of satirical, ironic, and humorous poetry. He wrote a book of anecdotes about his father, A. Nyzhankivsky, called Aktor hovoryt’ (The Actor Speaks, 1936); two story collections about urban life, Vulytsia (The Street, 1936, about Lviv’s ‘street people’) and Novely (Novellas, 1941); three poetry collections, Terpke vyno (Bitter Wine, 1942), Shchedrist’ (Generosity, 1947), and Vahota (Gravity, 1953); a humorous novelette about émigré life, Sviato na oseli (The Celebration at the Resort, 1975); and, under his pseudonym, the poetry collections Virshi ironichni, satyrychni i komichni (Verses Ironic, Satiric, and Comic, 1959), Karuselia virshiv (Carousel of Verses, 1976), and Martsypany i vytreben’ky (Marzipans and Caprices, 1983). Some of his stories and poems appeared in Arka, Kyïv (Philadelphia), Suchasnist’, Slovo: Zbirnyk, and other émigré periodicals. An issue of Terem (4 [1971]) was devoted to Nyzhankivky.

Roman Senkus

[This article originally appeared in the Encyclopedia of Ukraine, vol. 3 (1993).]

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