the Vsesvit poster (c) Cambridge Ukrainian Studies
A couple of weeks ago, Cambridge Ukrainian Studies held its 2023 Vsesvit evening, an annual event celebrating language, translation, and music in Ukraine. This year was dedicated to Crimean Tatar, the Turkic language spoken in Crimea. Among the readers (and singers) was Elmaz Asan, an incredible Crimean Tatar journalist and scholar who is currently on a research placement in Cambridge. You can read about Elmaz and her experience of being forced from two homelands by Russian invaders – Crimea in 2014 and then Ukraine in 2022 – and how she is adapting to life in Cambridge in this University piece.
The University Library has sadly few books in Crimean Tatar, but their numbers are slowly growing. Two books were added this week, among a group of 30 new Ukrainian ebooks. These two are language-learning books and not usual fare for the UL, but we felt it important to buy what is available. The strong turnout at the Vsesvit event showed how much interest there is in Crimea and also how much feeling there is for Crimean Tatars, and hopefully these two new books will be useful to those who are trying out the language. Continue reading →
Birch and cane dining chair, 1825, in the Kunstgewerbemuseum, my own photo
Karl Friedrich Schinkel (1781-1841) was a pre-eminent contributor to the 19th century planning of the city of Berlin, and several of the imposing buildings that he designed can still be admired today in the centre of the city – for instance, the Konzerthaus, the Neue Wache and the Altes Museum. It is now 200 years since he started work on his plans for this museum, the first of several to make up the Museum Island complex. Like many, I knew of him as an architect so I was surprised when I saw a simple chair, perhaps designed by him, during a pre-pandemic visit to Berlin’s splendid Kunstgewerbemuseum. This inspired me to look beyond his architecture and so this blog post will explore non-architectural aspects of his work and feature items from the University Library’s collections. Continue reading →
This week, another volume was added to the 50-volume Tvory (Works) set by Mykhaĭlo Hrushevs’kyĭ that has been being published since 2002. The new volume said it was v. 34, v. 6, and it contains part of Hrushevs’kyĭ’s epic history of Ukraine-Rusʹ. Having taken the numbers at face value, assigning the number as v. 34(6), I increasingly suspect that the v. 6 referred to on the title page will turn out to be preceded by v. 1-5 in the set’s v. 29-33 rather than all within a massive v. 34. Ah well – labels can be reprinted and metadata updated when we know for sure.
What we have so far in the set is: 1-4(2), 5-11, 13-16, 22-23, 34(6), 46(1-2)-47(1-2), and we have covered their contents in the first of two lengthy contents notes in the set’s record. The second note covers what v. 1 explained would be the subsets the overall set would involve, and we have added the relevant volumes that have turned up under these subsets as they appear (again, v. 34/34(6) seems to be altering the pattern):
Series . Socio-political works. v. 1-4(2). (1894-1926) — series . Historical studies and investigations. v. 5-10(2). (1888-1934) — series . Reviews and overviews. vol. 10(2), 14-16 (1888-1913, 1924-1930) — series . Literary criticism and literary works. v. 11-13 — series . Diaries and memoirs – series . History of Ukraine-Russia. v. 34(6) — series . History of Ukrainian literature — series . Monographic historical works. v. 22-23 — series . Auxiliary materials: directories, indexes, archives. v. 46(1-2)-47(1-2) — series . Epistolary heritage.
Among this week’s new Ukrainian arrivals was our first work of fiction about Russia’s full-scale war against Ukraine: Vladyslav Ivchenko’s book of stories Pisli︠a︡-24-ho (After the 24th), referring to 24 February 2022, the date of Russia’s open invasion. Its cover shows a black-and-white urban view through a window taped against missile damage. We also received the latest 6 volumes of the Misi͡at͡sʹ viĭny : khronika podiĭ : promovy ta zvernenni͡a prezydenta Ukraïny VolodymyraZelensʹkoho set, which provides a chronicle of the ongoing war through monthly collections of the Ukrainian President’s speeches. In this week’s delivery from our Ukrainian supplier, we received months 6-11.
Meggie Boyle is a 3rd year student of French in the Faculty of Modern and Medieval Literature and Linguistics. Earlier this year, she got in touch with us at Cambridge University Libraries with book recommendations for her Year Abroad Dissertation project. She suggested titles that we did not have, and we arranged digital alternate formats for books that were only available to buy in print format, via the Cambridge Libraries Accessibility Services. You can read here about her experience of disability which fueled her dissertation project.
“Disability has dominated my life, not only pervading every part of my physical body, but also seeping into the very core of my being, my mind: I see it in everything I do and everywhere I go.