op_lyubka1_Sergei ChuzavkovSOPA ImagesLightRocket via Getty Images_ukrainestatue Sergei Chuzavkov/SOPA Images/LightRocket via Getty Images
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A Writer’s War

Not all writers can continue their work – or even want to – when friends and family members are risking their lives against an invading army. Instead, they volunteer at the front, serve as cultural diplomats, and work to remove the occupiers' statues, museums, and street names.

Andriy Lyubka is an award-winning Ukrainian poet, essayist, and translator. The English translation of his debut novel Carbide, which depicts the efforts of Transcarpathian smugglers to dig a tunnel connecting Ukraine with the European Union, was published in 2021 and made the long list for that year’s EBRD Literature Prize. This interview took place during the annual Meridian Czernowitz literary festival (this year simply called “poetry readings”) in Chernivtsi, the first event of its kind to take place since the start of the Russian invasion of Ukraine.