Chumak, Vasyl

Chumak, Vasyl [Чумак, Василь; Čumak, Vasyl'], b 7 July 1901 in Ichnia, Chernihiv gubernia, d 21 November 1919 in Kyiv. Revolutionary and writer. Chumak became an active member of the Borotbists. He was secretary of the editorial board of the art journal Mystetstvo (1919–20) and an associate of the All-Ukrainian Literature Collegium of the People's Commissariat of Education. A talented writer of romantic-revolutionary poetry, Chumak began to write in 1917. He was executed by Anton Denikin's counterintelligence, and collections of his poetry were all published posthumously: Zaspiv (Prelude, 1920), Revoliutsiia (Revolution, 1920), and Chervonyi zaspiv (The Red Prelude, 1922, 1930, 1956). Despite the general acceptance in the 1920s of Volodymyr Koriak's thesis that Borotbist poets such as Chumak, Vasyl Blakytny, Andrii Zalyvchy, and Hnat Mykhailychenko were the ‘first brave’ founders of Ukrainian Soviet literature, Chumak's works were prohibited at the beginning of the 1930s. He was rehabilitated only in the mid-1950s. An edition of his works and reminiscences about him was published in 1991.

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

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