Rubchak, Bohdan

Image - Bohdan Rubchak and Bohdan Boychuk. Image - Bohdan Rubchak (1960s photo).

Rubchak, Bohdan [Рубчак, Богдан; Rubčak], b 6 March 1935 in Kalush, Galicia, d 23 September 2018 in Boonton, New Jersey, USA. Poet and literary scholar. In 1948, after being displaced by the Second World War, Rubchak settled in the United States. He studied comparative literature at Rutgers University in New Jersey (PH D, 1977) and between 1974 and 2005 was a professor at the University of Illinois, Chicago Circle. A member of the New York Group, Rubchak published five collections of poetry—Kaminnyi sad (Stone Orchard, 1956), Promenysta zrada (Bright Betrayal, 1960), Divchyni bez kraïny (For a Girl without a Country, 1963), Osobysta Klio (Personal Clio, 1967), and Marenu topyty (To Drown Marena, 1980)—and a volume of collected works, Krylo Ikarove (The Wing of Icarus, 1983). Rubchak's lyrical poetry is introspective and marked by classical restraint and an intellectual atmosphere enhanced by his literary erudition. His short stories are gifted but too sporadic, and his prose consists mainly of literary criticism. Numerous essays in both English and Ukrainian have appeared in various journals and reveal that he is a knowledgeable, incisive, and eloquent critic of Ukrainian poetry, individual poets (Bohdan Nyzhankivsky, Bohdan Kravtsiv, Vasyl Barka, Yuriy Tarnawsky, Patrytsiia Kylyna [Patricia Warren], Vira Vovk), modernism, and émigré Ukrainian literature. Of special note are his comprehensive introduction to Ukrainian modernism in Ostap Luts’kyi—molodomuzets’ (Ostap Lutsky, Member of the Moloda Muza, 1968), his annotations of and introduction to Mykhailo Kotsiubynsky in the translation of Shadows of Forgotten Ancestors (1981), and his notes to Bohdan Ihor Antonych—Zibrani tvory (Bohdan Ihor Antonych: Collected Works, 1967). Together with Bohdan Boychuk he edited and wrote biographical-critical vignettes for the important two-volume anthology of contemporary Ukrainian poetry in the West Koordynaty (Co-ordinates, 1969).

Danylo Husar Struk

[This article was updated in 2018.]

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