Agricultural periodicals

Image - Sil's'kyi Hospodar newspaper (Lviv) (1926-44).

Agricultural periodicals

Central and eastern Ukraine until 1920. Before 1919 central and eastern Ukrainians subscribed mostly to journals published by Russian agricultural societies, primarily in Saint Petersburg. The first agricultural journal published in Ukraine was Zapiski Imperatorskogo obshchestva sel’skogo khoziaistva Iuzhnoi Rossii (1832–1915), a monthly that appeared in Odesa. Various agricultural societies and associations of the farm industry published their own periodicals: the Kyiv society published its Trudy (1882–4) and then the weekly Zemledelie (1884–1904); the Kharkiv society published the biweekly Khliborob (Kharkiv) (1907–18) for the peasants. Agricultural periodicals in Ukrainian appeared only at the beginning of the 1910s, and their number was very small: the biweekly Rillia (1911–14 and 1917–18); Ukraïns’ke bdzhil’nytstvo (1906–10); and Ukraïns’ke pasichnytstvo (1917–18). The last two were edited by Yevhen Arkhypenko, and all three were published in Kyiv.

Agricultural matters received much attention in the general periodical press in Ukraine, particularly in the various Gubernskie vedomosti. When the ban on Ukrainian publications was lifted in 1905, almost all Ukrainian periodicals devoted much space to agricultural questions, especially periodicals intended for the peasants, such as Svitova zirnytsia (1906–12, and then irregularly), Selo (1909–11), the biweekly Nasha kooperatsiia (1913–14), and Slovo (Kyiv) (1907–9). From 1917 to 1920 co-operative periodicals, particularly Sil’s’kyi hospodar (Kyiv) (1918–19), published extensively on agricultural matters.

Ukrainian SSR 1920–41. The number of agricultural periodicals increased rapidly between 1920 and 1930, especially from 1922. From 1921 to 1940 about 360 such periodicals appeared in Ukraine; about 90 of them were journals. In 1920 there were no more than 9 periodicals and no journals. In 1925, 44 periodicals came out, and 12 of them were journals; in 1930, 74 periodicals (25 journals); in 1935, 25 periodicals (8 journals); in 1940, 33 periodicals (6 journals). The largest increase in agricultural periodicals occurred in the period of the New Economic Policy. Their number declined during collectivization and increased slightly at the end of the 1930s. From 1923 to 1932 agricultural periodicals were numerous but short-lived. They came out infrequently, in small printings, and changed titles often. With few exceptions these periodicals were in Ukrainian. Many of them were bulletins, reports, and newsletters. The publications of agricultural institutes, tekhnikums, scientific research institutes, and research stations had a scientific and practical significance. Their average duration of publication was 2.3 years, and their average frequency was 3.1 issues per year. The publications of (or financed by) the People's Commissariat of Agricultural Affairs, of its scientific research stations, and of the Agricultural Scientific Committee of Ukraine received better support. The most important and long-lived among them (omitting journals) were Materiialy doslidzhennia gruntiv Ukraïny (13 vols, 1917–31), Pratsi Polis’koï sil’s’ko-hospodars’koï doslidnoï stantsiï (61 issues, 1928–36), Trudy Ukraïns’koho naukovo-doslidnoho instytutu zernovoho hospodarstva (1935), Trudy Ukraïns’koho naukovo-doslidnoho instytutu sadivnytstva (30 issues, 1931–41), and Trudy Naukovoho instytutu svynovodstva (30 issues, 1930–40). The transactions of the agricultural research stations of Poltava (73 issues, 1920–30), Sumy (30 issues, 1920–31), and Myronivka (1924–31) were printed in Russian.

Journals, which were mostly monthlies, varied in character: some were scientific, some practical, some popular. Many of them were specialized. The more important scientific journals were Agronom (20 issues, 1923–6), published by the Agricultural Scientific Committee of Ukraine; the monthly Visnyk sil’s’ko-hospodars’koï nauky (1922–9); Agrotekhnika (1922–32); and Biuleten’ Kharkivs’koï kraiovoï sil’s’ko-hospodars’koï stantsiï (1925–9). Among professional scientific monthlies the following should be mentioned: Ukraïns’kyi agronom and Ukraïns’kyi zemlevporiadnyk, both published in Kharkiv in 1925–9 and replaced by Spetsialist sil’s’koho hospodarstva Ukraïny (1930–2). Among the popular journals devoted to the mechanization of agriculture were Mashyna na seli (Kharkiv 1930–4) and Za mekhanizatsiiu sil’s’koho hospodarstva (Kyiv 1935–7). Popular agricultural journals of a general nature included the biweekly Poltavs’kyi selianyn (Poltava 1925–9) and the monthly Zernove hospodarstvo (Kyiv 1936–40). The cultivation of industrial crops was discussed in the popular monthlies: Kolektyvni lany buriakosiiannia (Kharkiv 1930–4, with title changes), Buriakivnytstvo (Kyiv 1936–8), Za radians’ku bavovnu (Kherson 1931–3), Za tekhnichnu kul’turu (Kharkiv 1931–3), and Tekhnichni kultury (Kyiv 1938–40). Two scientific practical journals were devoted to fruit-growing and gardening: Visnyk sadivnytstva, vynohradnytstva ta horodnytstva (1925–30, with title changes) and Sad ta horod (Kyiv 1937–49). Monthlies dealing with animal husbandry were Sotsialistychne tvarynnytstvo (Kharkiv, Kyiv 1931–49, with title changes and interruptions), Ptakhivnytstvo Ukraïny (1930–4); and Kolhospne bdzhil’nytstvo (Kharkiv 1925–41, with title changes). Ukraïns’kyi myslyvets’ i rybalka (Kharkiv 1925–32) was devoted to hunting and fishing.

Western Ukraine until 1944. Before Ukrainian agricultural periodicals appeared in Galicia, German and Polish agricultural periodicals were widely read. Agricultural problems were constantly discussed in general Ukrainian periodicals such as Pys’mo z Prosvity and the co-operative press, especially Ekonomist. The biweekly Hospodar (Lviv) (1869–72) and Hospodar i promyshlennyk (1879–87), which became Hospodar (Peremyshl) (1898–1913), were the first professional agricultural periodicals. The most widely read agricultural journal in the 1910s was the biweekly Hospodars’ka chasopys’ (1910–18), published by the Silskyi Hospodar society. The central office of farmers’ clubs published Providnyk ril’nychykh kruzhkiv (Lviv 1886–1914) three times a month. The Patrons of Agricultural Associations published monthly the bilingual (Polish and Ukrainian) Chasopys dlia spilok ril’nychykh (1904–14) and a separate Ukrainian edition (1915–21). In Bukovyna agricultural information was published in Vistnyk Soiuza ruskykh khliborobs’kykh spilok na Bukovyni, Selians’ka kasa (1903–8), Narodne bohatstvo (1908–11), and particularly Dobri rady (1889–1914).

After 1918 no periodicals devoted solely to agriculture appeared in Galicia until the Silskyi Hospodar society began to flourish and revived its biweekly Sil’s’kyi hospodar (1926–44). This association also published more specialized monthly journals: Ukraïns’kyi pasichnyk (1928–39 and 1941–4) and Praktychne sadivnytstvo (1933–8), both edited by Mykhailo Borovsky; Khliborobs’ka molod’ (1934–9); and Sad i horod (1939). Ukrains’kyi agronomichnyi visnyk (1934–8) was a scientific quarterly. From 1923 to 1932, besides the journals of the Silskyi Hospodar society, Sil’s’kyi svit was published in Lviv, Peremyshl, and Lutsk. Transcarpathia had the monthly Hospodar (1923–5), edited by Mykola Tvorydlo, and Podkarpats’ke pcholiarstvo (1923–6).

Ukrainian SSR after the Second World War. There is a paucity of agricultural periodicals in the Ukrainian SSR, as is evident from the accompanying table for 1973 (figures in parentheses represent the RSFSR). The agricultural journals were monthlies published in Kyiv; all were in Ukrainian. Among them was one scientific journal, Visnyk sil’s’ko-hospodars’koï nauky, published from 1962 by the Ministry of Agriculture of the Ukrainian SSR and previously by the Ukrainian Academy of Agricultural Sciences. It had a printing of 5,100 (1973). The popular Khliborob Ukraïny, which had a printing of 55,800, contained little agricultural information and mostly propaganda. The main specialized journals were: Tvarynnytstvo Ukraïny, with a printing of 62,400; Mekhanizatsiia sil’s’koho hospodarstva, which had been published since 1950 by the Council of Ministers of the Ukrainian SSR with a printing of 27,800 (cf the Moscow journal Sel’skii mekhanizator, which had a printing of over 700,000); and Sil’s’ke budivnytstvo, with a printing of 27,800. Most of the other periodicals (serialized works, thematic collections, and bulletins) were published by agricultural institutes and scientific research institutes and did not appear frequently (3.7 times per year on the average). Their average printing was 1,244.

Although the number of agricultural periodicals and their print runs had increased (in 1950 there were 24 periodicals with an annual print run of 700,000), they did not meet the needs of Ukrainian farmers. This can best be demonstrated by the above statistics and the following comparison: in Ukraine there was one agricultural periodical for every 137,000 individuals employed in agriculture (and one journal for every 1.2 million employees in general), while in the RSFSR there was one periodical for every 39,000 agricultural employees (and one journal for every 155,000 general employees). Thus, in Ukraine each person employed in agriculture would receive 0.24 copies of an agricultural periodical, while in the RSFSR each employee would receive 0.52 copies. Ukraine is a more agricultural country than Russia, yet its farmers were obliged to use Russian agricultural periodicals, the more so since the latter were more attractive, better illustrated, and more readily available.

Andrii Kachor, Volodymyr Kubijovyč, Sofiia Yaniv

[This article originally appeared in the Encyclopedia of Ukraine, vol. 1 (1984).]

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