Savchenko, Fedir

Savchenko, Fedir [Савченко, Федір; Savčenko; aka Savtchenko, Théodore], b 2 February 1892 in Khorol, Poltava gubernia, d ? Historian; member of the Shevchenko Scientific Society from 1927. After graduating from the Nizhyn Historical-Philological Institute he continued studying history, sociology, ethnology, and Romance philology in Paris (from 1914) and became a professor of Russian at the Ecole supérieure de commerce et d’industrie de Paris. In 1918, with E. Denis and A. Thomas, he founded the Cercle d’Etudes Franco-Ukrainiennes in France and edited its organ, La France et l’Ucraine. He also wrote a number of pamphlets, including L’Ukraine et la question ukrainienne (1918). In 1919 Savchenko was in charge of the Ukrainian National Republic press bureau at the Paris Peace Conference. His contacts with the émigré Ukrainian Party of Socialist Revolutionaries and with Mykhailo Hrushevsky assisted him in arranging his return to Ukraine in 1925. In Kyiv he worked in the historical section of the All-Ukrainian Academy of Sciences (VUAN), as director of its Commission of Western and American Studies and Commission of Western Ukraine. He was also the secretary of the socioeconomic section of the VUAN Institute of the Ukrainian Scientific Language and a member of the Commissions for Cultural and Historical Songs and of Modern Ukrainian History. He was also secretary of the journal Ukraïna (1914–30) and a corresponding scholar in the Cabinet of Primitive Culture.

Savchenko wrote over 50 articles and monographs, most of which were published by the VUAN in Ukraïna (1914–30) and in Za sto lit. He wrote about French-Ukrainian cultural ties and the Cossackophilism of Prosper Mérimée (1925), Honoré de Balzac in Ukraine (1924), Taras Shevchenko in the unpublished correspondence of Osyp Bodiansky (1930), and on ethnography (a collection of Ukrainian folk songs from 1827 to 1927, 1927–8). His monograph Zaborona ukraïnstva 1876 r. (1930) was republished by the Harvard Ukrainian Research Institute in the Harvard Series in Ukrainian Studies as The Suppression of the Ukrainian Activities in 1876 (1970). Savchenko was arrested and imprisoned in 1931, and perished in the Stalinist terror.

Arkadii Zhukovsky

[This article originally appeared in the Encyclopedia of Ukraine, vol. 4 (1993).]




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