« 2022. # 2 (164)

The Ethnology Notebooks. 2022. № 2 (164), 314—326

UDK 94(477.83) 801.81

DOI https://doi.org/10.15407/nz2022.02.314



  • ORCID ID: https://orcid.org/0000-0003-4415-002X
  • Candidate of Philological Sciences (= Ph. D. in Philology),
  • Senior Researcher at the Institute of Ethnology
  • of the National Academy of Sciences of Ukraine,
  • Department of Folkloristics,
  • 15, Svobody Avenue, 79000, Lviv, Ukraine,
  • Contacts: e-mail: mdemedyuk@gmail.com

Abstract. The article explores the plots, motives, and characters that shaped the perception of the Kolky Insurgent Republic as a center of the national liberation struggle of Ukrainians during the Nazi occupation.

The author discovers that stories concerning World War II in the Manevychi area in the Volyn region revolve around the formation, existence, and destruction of the rebel administration in Kolky and the surrounding villages.

The goal of this investigation is to look at the characteristics and transformation of the image of the Kolky Insurgent Republic in the oral traditional prose of Volyn Polissya residents.

The object of the study is folklore narratives, which the author recorded during the folklore trips in 2018—2021, and the subject is the reflection in the texts of events related to the existence of the insurgent center in the Kolky area during WWII.

The work’s methodology is based on the concepts of objectivity and folkloristic historicism, with structural-typological and conceptual analysis as the primary methods. The authors employ elaborations on the subject of autobiographical story study around the world and in Ukrainian scientific discourse. It is underlined that, in recent years, as the area of oral science has expanded, the study of historical narratives has become more relevant in the emphasis of Ukrainian folklore research papers (works of E. Lunyo, O. Kuzmenko, O. Britsyna, L. Khalyuk, etc.).

The author observes that in the town of Kolky and the neighboring villages, tales concerning the existence of the insurgent center mostly focus on the operations of insurgent schools and nursing schools.

The heroic image of the Kolky insurgents is reduced to a series of events with a list of the most important pages in the Kolky Republic’s history.

The emphasis is on the antagonism of «their» insurgents and alien Germans, Soviet guerrillas, in descriptions of active participants that are often impersonal. When portraying UPA troops during the Kolky Republic’s period, physical attributes such as youth, beauty, height, physical strength, and good moral qualities become important.

The author underlines that the account of the tragic pages of the Kolky Republic’s annihilation, which was accompanied by the bombing of Kolky and the burning of several nearby towns and hamlets, is the most numerous set of writings relating to the era of its existence.

Keywords: folklore text, narratives, World War II, national liberation struggle, Volyn, Kolky Insurgent Republic.

Received 29.04.2022


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