Serhiy Zhadan, 2015, Wrocław
|Born||Сергі́й Ві́кторович Жада́н
23 August 1974
Starobilsk, Luhansk Oblast, Soviet Ukraine
|Alma mater||Kharkiv University|
|Occupation||poet, novelist, translator|
Life and career
Zhadan was born in Starobilsk, Luhansk Oblast in Ukraine. He graduated from H.S. Skovoroda Kharkiv National Pedagogical University in 1996 with a thesis on the work of Mykhail Semenko and the Ukrainian Futurist writers of the 1920s. He then spent three years as a graduate student of philology, and taught Ukrainian and world literature from 2000 to 2004. Since then he has worked as a freelance writer.
Zhadan is an internationally known Ukrainian writer, with 12 books of poetry and 7 novels, and winner of more than a dozen literary awards. In March 2008, the Russian translation of his novel Anarchy in the UKR made the shortlist of the National Bestseller Prize. It was also a contender for "Book of the Year" at the 2008 Moscow International Book Exhibition. In 2009 he won the Joseph Conrad-Korzeniowski Literary Prize. In 2012 Gunshot and Knife won Ukrainian rating "Book of the Year" for fiction. His 2014 novel Voroshilovgrad won him the Jan Michalski Prize for Literature in Switzerland, BBC Ukrainian's “Book of the Decade” award and Brücke Berlin Prize. His selected poems Dynamo Kharkiv won Ukrainian “Book of the Year.” (2014) His book Mesopotamia won the Angelus literature prize in 2015, the Award of the President of Ukraine "Ukrainian Book of the Year" in 2016.
Zhadan has translated poetry from German, English, Belarusian, and Russian, from such poets as Paul Celan and Charles Bukowski. His own works have been translated into German, English, French, Italian, Swedish, Norwegian, Polish, Serbian, Croatian, Lithuanian, Latvian, Belarusian, Russian, Hungarian, Armenian, and Czech.
Theater and Multimedia projects
His novel Anthem of Democratic Youth has been adapted for the stage and performed at the Ivan Franko National Academic Drama Theater in Kyiv. Since 2004 he has worked with Yara Arts Group form La MaMa Experimental Theatre in New York, contributing to the shows: "Koliada: Twelve Dishes" (2005), "Underground Dreams"(2013-2014), "Hitting Bedrock" (2015) and "1917-2017: Tychyna, Zhadan and the Dogs," (2016-2017).
His poems “Spy,” “Chaplain” and “Needle,” translated by Tkacz and Phipps were part of "Blind Spot," an installation by Mykola Ridnyi and Serhiy Zhadan for the Ukrainian Pavillion at the Venice Biennale May-July, 2015 See photos 
Zhadan collaborated with Kharkiv-based music band Luk. Most of Luk's Ukrainian-language songs included lyrics based on works by Zhadan (in particular the first album Tourist zone is based on Zhadan's play "Merry Christmas, Jesus Christ").
The tribute album Khor monholskykh militsioneriv (Mongol policemen choir) was released in 2008. The songs include lyrics by Zhadan, performed by Kharkiv musicians.
Since 2007, Zhadan has collaborated with another Kharkiv band Sobaky v Kosmosi, now known as Zhadan and the Dogs. They released the albums — The Army Sports Club (Sportyvny Klub Armiyi, 2008), Weapons of the Proletatiat (Zbroya Proletariatu, 2012), Fight for Her (Byisya za neyi, 2012) and Dogs (Sobaky, 2016).
Zhadan’s active involvement in Ukrainian Independence began while a student and has continued throughout the various political crisis in Ukraine. He participated in the 2004 Orange Revolution demonstrations against corruption and voter intimidation in the presidential run-off elections. The protests resulted in a revote ordered by Ukraine’s Supreme Court. In 2013 he was a member of the coordination council of Euromaidan Kharkiv, part of the nationwide protests and violent clashes with police.  The 5 day Maidan revolution resulted in resignation of Russian backed President Yanukovych. In 2014, he was assaulted outside the administration building in Kharkiv.
Since 2014 Zhadan has made numerous visits to the front lines of the Eastern Donbas region involved in armed conflict with Russian separatists. In February 2017 he co-founded Serhiy Zhadan Charitable Foundation to provide humanitarian aid to front-line cities.
Rostislav Melnikov and Yuriy Tsaplin of the New Literary Review wrote in 2007:
Zhadan's prose is so poetic, his free verse so prosaic. It is difficult to assign a genre to his work: memoir, travelogue, timely or untimely meditation - or a mixture of all these, centered on the themes my generation and our epoch.
Kirill Ankudinov, writing for Vzglyad.ru in June 2008, said:
There is no summarizing the spicy, hot, sweet, vicious improvisations of Serhiy Zhadan - this is verbal jazz. When you read him, you fear for contemporary Russian literature: of those now writing in the Russian language, there is none among them who is so infernally free (and above all, free from "writerly" prose, from the tendency to "produce an impression").
Poetry in English translations
- Translations by Virlana Tkacz and Wanda Phipps
- Tin House. "Fishes' Tears." Translated by Alan Zhukovski
- Asymptote. "Pennsylvanian Readings." Translated by Alan Zhukovski
- Poetry International Web. Seven poems
- Virginia Quarterly Review. "Stones" (excerpts). Translated by Valzhyna Mort
English-language articles about Zhadan
- The Bard of Eastern Ukraine, Where Things Are Falling Apart. The New Yorker. Marci Shore. November 28, 2016.
- The Abuse of Ukraine's Best-Known Poet. The New Yorker. Sally McGrane. March 8, 2014.
- The Word in a Time of War. Asymptote. Mayhill Fowler on Serhiy Zhadan.
- Ukraine’s Mesopotamia. LRB Blog. Peter Pomerantsev.
- In Transcarpathia. LRB Blog. Peter Pomerantsev.
- Crimean Dreams. LRB Blog Peter Pomerantsev.
- Born in 1974 and 1984, Torn in 2004 and 2014.... World Literature Today. Jutta Lindekugel. November 2014.
- Quotations (Цитатник), 1995.
- General Judas (Генерал Юда), 1995.
- Pepsi (Пепсі), (1998).
- The very best poems, psychedelic stories of fighting and other bullshit: Selected Poems, 1992-2000 (Вибрані поезії), 2000.
- Ballads about War and Reconstruction (Балади про війну і відбудову), 2001.
- The History of Culture at the Beginning of This Century (Історія культури початку століття), (2003)
- UkSSR (У.Р.С.Р.), 2004.
- Maradona (Марадона), 2007.
- Ethiopia (Ефіопія), 2009.
- Lili Marlene (Лілі Марлен), 2009.
- Fire Arms and Knives (Вогнепальні й ножові), 2012.
- Life of Maria (Життя Марії), 2015.
- Templars (Тамплієри), 2016.
- Big Mac (Біґ Мак; short story collection), 2003.
- Depeche Mode (Депеш Мод), 2004; Glagoslav Publications Limited, 2013, ISBN 9781909156845
- Anarchy in the UKR, 2005.
- Anthem of Democratic Youth (Гімн демократичної молоді), 2006.
- Big Mac² (Біґ Мак²; short story collection), 2007.
- Voroshilovgrad (Ворошиловград), 2010; Deep Vellum Publishing, 2016, ISBN 9781941920305.
- Big Mac and Other Stories (Біґ Мак та інші історії), 2011.
- Mesopotamia (Месопотамія; nine stories and thirty poems), 2014.
- Capital (Капітал), 2006 - includes everything but The History of Culture at the Beginning of the Century, Big Mac, and Maradona.
- Stanislav+2 (Станислав+2), 2001.
- "Ch" Time - Verses on Chechnya and Not Only (Время `Ч`. Стихи о Чечне и не только), 2001.
- We Will Not Die in Paris (Мы умрем не в Париже), 2002.
- The History of Culture (История культуры), 2004.
- The Unknown Ukraine (НеИзвестная Украина), 2005.
- Jan Michalski Prize for Literature, awarded in 2014 for Voroshilovgrad
- BBC Ukrainian's Book of the Decade award in December 2014 for Voroshilovgrad
- Angelus literature prize 2015, for his book Mesopotamia, translated to Polish by Michał Petryk and Adam Pomorski
- Balla, Olga (1 November 2016). "Тяжелые соты письма" (in Russian). Colta. Retrieved 5 November 2016.
- McGrane, Sally (8 March 2014). "The Abuse of Ukraine's Best-Known Poet". The New Yorker. Retrieved 12 March 2014.
- "Ukraine activists swap Lenin for Lennon". BBC. 23 December 2013.
- Maksymiuk, Jan; Bigg, Claire (11 March 2014). "Ukraine's Rock Star Poet Who Chose To Fight Back". Radio Free Europe. Retrieved 12 March 2014.
- Melnikov, Rostislav; Tsaplin, Yuriy (2007). "Northeast of the Southwest: The Contemporary Literature of Kharkiv". The New Literary Review, #85.
- Ankudinov, Kirill (5 June 2008). "Adventures in April". Vzglyad.
- Brack, Joëlle (28 November 2014). "Prix Jan Michalski 2014". Payot Libraire. Retrieved 29 November 2014.
- "BBC Ukrainian Book of the Year 2014 and Book of the Decade winners named". The FINANCIAL. 13 December 2014.
- Булкина, Инна. "Кроме Нобеля: Ангелус и другие" (in Russian). Gefter. Retrieved 16 December 2015.
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to Serhiy Zhadan.|
- (in Ukrainian) The poetry of Serhiy Zhadan
- (in Russian) Profile at Vavilon.ru
- (in Russian) Entry at Speaking in Tongues
- (in Russian) Entry at Net Literature
- (in Ukrainian) Zhadan's blog
- (in Russian) Verses translated by A. Pustogarova
- (in Ukrainian) Zhadan reading "Fungi of the Donbass" in Donetsk
- (in Ukrainian) Zhadan reading "Lukoil" in Poland
- (in Russian) Large collection of materials about Zhadan
- (in Russian) Translations by Elena Fanailova
- (in Russian) Translations by Yevhenia Chuprina