Over the past year or so, the Ukrainian government has been compiling a list of books which are banned in the Ukraine. While researching current post, I saw this piece from August 2015 in the BBC. That was when the list included 38 books. (List is now up to around 75 or so.)
I will go ahead and borrow the Beeb’s translation of the Ukrainian announcement and its rationale:
The blacklist was published by the Ukrainian State Television and Radio Committee. It accused Russia of waging “information warfare” against Ukraine.
The Ukrainian committee’s statement said the ban was aimed at “safeguarding Ukrainian citizens against the use of information warfare and disinformation methods, against the spread of hate ideology, fascism, xenophobia and separatism”.
Just this one time, I will restrain myself from ejaculating (in the Dickensian sense) upon the irony of (a government formed of Banderites who whitewash pro-Nazi collaborators), dissing Russian state ideology as “fascist”. Or as my dear old mum likes to say: “People who carry swastikas through the streets should not cast aspersions upon their neighbors.” Quite right, mum.
To be sure, this BBC piece from last year attempts to be fair and balanced. Like little Jenny Wren in Our Mutual Friend, it shakes its crooked little finger at Ukraine, warning about “slippery slopes” of the censorship and blacklisting variety. And then goes on to halfway excuse, and also point out (oh no, not the dreaded what-about-ism!) that the Russian government maintains a similar list.
BBC then goes on to categorize Russian writer Eduard Limonov as a “Russian nationalist”. Which he is not. (Limonov is actually a communist of a Trotskyite bent.) So, please get your various political ideologies straight, my dear Beeb! And BBC piece finishes to orgasm with an acid-spray propaganda blast against Russia, pointing out that “Many German women committed suicide after being raped (by Red Army soldiers).” There were many raped women, not a specific number, of course, but many …. No wonder the Ukrainians have to wall themselves off from these xenophobic, fascist, raping Russian beasts, with all their mean books and stuff… After all, as Ukrainian President Poroshenko pointed out to his NATO friends, Ukraine is the Eastern Front, the Last Centurion at his lonely post, defending the civilized world against unspeakable barbarians right across the border.
The Blacklist In Its Current State
Meanwhile, the Ukrainian blacklist of banned books keeps growing. Yesterday Ukrainian State Media published (on the web) the expanded list of books which Ukrainians are not allowed to purchase, to read, or to bring across the border into Ukraine, for example in their luggage.
Dissemination of these books on the territory of Ukraine will be punished by Article 110 of the Criminal Code, “Attacks against the territorial integrity and sovereignty of the Ukraine”.
What follows in the Navigator piece I linked, is a complete list of all the banned books. I counted 74 books. And I found this piece which translates out into English the names of the writers and titles of the books in question. So, I don’t have to do that. (Thank you! Thank you!)
As one of the Navigator commenters remarked: “Well, there is my reading list for the summer!”