One of the most important realist novelists of nineteenth-century Ukraine, Ivan Nechui-Levyts'kyi was caricatured and then forgotten by a generation of literary modernists who rejected his aesthetic and ideological views. In The All-Encompassing Eye of Ukraine, Maxim Tarnawsky presents a thorough and much-needed reexamination of Nechui-Levyts'kyi and his work.
A solitary, modest man whose chief interest was in promoting and defending a Ukrainian identity threatened by the cultural policies of the Russian Empire, Levyts'kyi’s writing described Ukraine, its people, its culture, and the forces threatening it. A satirist who attacked modernism and cosmopolitanism, he wrote in a style marked by what Tarnawsky calls non-purposeful narration – slow-paced humour built on rhetorical finesse rather than on plot or character development.
A vital reconsideration of a significant Ukrainian novelist written by the foremost expert on his work, The All-Encompassing Eye of Ukraine deepens and expands our understanding of Ukraine’s nineteenth-century literature.
About the author
Maxim Tarnawsky is an associate professor in the Department of Slavic Languages and Literatures at the University of Toronto.
- Commended, Best Book awarded by the American Association for Ukrainian Studies
‘A thorough and much needed re-examination of the author and his work.’
The Ukrainian Weekly, January 10, 2016
‘Tarnawsky’s book shines a welcome light on an important writer and period that research in the west has neglected.’
Slavic Review vol 75:02:2016
"The All-Encompassing Eye of Ukraine is evidence of the revelatory force of careful and unprejudiced reading, and a demonstration of the benefits to be gained from taking one’s canonical authors seriously."
Harvard Ukrainian Studies, vol 35:1-4