Андрій Павлишин Andrij Pavlyshyn

* 1964

  • Together with Yevhen Patrakieyev and Dmytro Relko, who actually went to the Baltic States, we published some social-democratic bulletins. They were spread perfectly. Well, imagine: Dima bought a ticket, some kind of inexpensive railway ticket (the Soviet Union was not so big) to Vilnius, he went there, maybe with a few hundred rubles for paper, to pay for the multiplication - he brought a print run of ten thousand, which we sold for a ruble in a few days , that is, we returned ten thousand to the party treasury. And so it was done every month, our material resources were not bad, we could afford to fly to Tallinn, to Moscow on airplanes, it was also inexpensive - to live in hotels, to organize infrastructure. It all ended quickly after the start of inflation and the economic collapse that Pavlov had prepared for the Soviet Union, after the actual collapse of the Union it all turned into garbage, all this money, one should not have been social democrats but advanced bank employees or fartsovshchiks — it was not our talents, our money was gone, mostly nothing was left of them. Although later we managed to use them to create the party infrastructure. I just clarified for myself that the founding congress of the Social Democratic Party of Ukraine took place in May 1990 in Kyiv. Different socialist circles united among themselves, they arose in Kyiv, Poltava, Sumy, somewhere in Dobnas, unfortunately for us, there were quite a lot of them in Kyiv. The Lviv circle, which published a bulletin and was visible in general public initiatives, joined them. As a group, we held this congress in the library of the Polytechnic University. I took an active part in its preparation and was assigned to read the report about the history of the social-democratic movement, about our traditions. The program documents were prepared by Viktor Vovk, who is now also a well-known figure but rather of a liberal direction and an honorary member of the Club of Rome. Andrii Nosenko was one of the coordinators who dealt with technical issues and later became the technical head of the party. We lived at his place when we arrived, or in the dormitory of the Polytechnic University, Andrii was connected with it. One minute (is coughing). Yaroslav Hrytsak helped me prepare the speech for the congress. We have known each other for a long time since university, he was a young scientist, the author of the biography of Ivan Franko. I came to Slavko to one of his rented apartments, which he rented in his early youth. He specially rented such apartments in the houses where the young Franko once lived as a student. Slavko gave me a lot of advice, told me a lot... I wrote this speech, we appealed to the historical tradition of the social democratic parties that existed in eastern Ukraine and Galicia, then it was the centenary of their foundation and of this movement in general, the radical Ukrainian party, the social-democratic party in Ukraine led by Volodymyr Starosolskyi, he was a key figure for us, and of the Ukrainian Social Democratic Party led by Symon Petliura, he was also a model for us.

  • The fruit of our joint activity was the book “Ukraine and Poland between the past and the future”. It was a collection of texts, Yaroslav Dashkevych wrote the text for it, Serhii Lylyk, the historian I mentioned here, wrote for it as well. We took information about the churches destroyed in Poland by the communist authorities, about the repressions against the Ukrainian Greek Catholic Church, about the operation “Vistula” carried out by the Polish authorities in 1947, about the concentration camp in Jaworzno, about the functioning of Ukrainian public organizations in Poland from 1956 to the present day, interviews with some Ukrainian activists who are in Poland now. I visited them, I even collected materials in Poland, because at that time you could already buy a fictitious voucher to Przemyśl, to Warsaw, I already started to practice it. We compiled the book, I translated all the necessary parts of the textx from Polish, there were indexes, everything was done “ready to operate” so to speak. The book was typed and printed in Kharkiv, and then came August 19, 1991, and the book was actually printed on those days. Frightened management of the factory sent the entire circulation “for noodles”, everything we paid for “for noodles”, the entire circulation was destroyed. The workers then managed to take out several packages, I have one copy, people saved a few more copies, it was distributed somewhere in narrow circles, but this book does not exist in the public space, does not exist. And now, last year, 30 years have passed since the day of its publication, unfortunately, it has never existed in public space. GKChP (State Committee on the State of Emergency) was a very difficult challenge for us. We even bought a large printing press and installed it in the basement of the Shevchenko District Committee of the Communist Party, and it was planned to develop a publishing department there that would work for the needs of the “Prosvita” publishing house. When there was GKChP, I was already a deputy of the Lviv City Council, they agreed on areas of responsibility, where to build barricades, where to stop tanks, where and who makes Molotov cocktails, where I was assigned to this unit that was supposed to deal with medical care, rescuing the wounded. We understood that we were going to lose, but at least we, like our ancestors, will set an example of struggle, resistance and determination in the struggle, and that's all. That's how all those tense three days passed, but of course you understand that GKChP collapsed, everything fell apart. When we arrived at our printing presses on the 22nd or so, the members of the People’s Movement of Ukraine were already waiting for us there, put us against the wall, took out their pistols, loaded them and said that they would shoot us now if we did not tell them where the gold of the Communist Party was buried - they were deeply convinced that we we know the secret. Somehow we managed to settle this conflict through our friends from “Prosvita”, but the wagons with the paper were confiscated, which means that all possibilities collapsed, and turbulent events of nation-building began.

  • With the Ukrainian PEN club there was such a situation that membership fees were not paid for certain years, the structure did not function, Sverstiuk died, Oksana was somewhere abroad on another scholarship. And then a group of emigrants from Ukraine joined in, who wrote in Russian some terrible graphomaniac texts, but who communicated there with various left-wing circles, not social-democratic, but just some strange anarchists who simply do not know what they want there in the West, who are fighting against everyone, “Baba Yaga is against” so to speak against everyone. And so they proposed, through the German PEN club, to the head office in London that they would create a Ukrainian PEN club, the fact that they work abroad does not matter, everything will function normally, they will pay in advance, they will be promoting the most incredible LGBT values “day and night” and everything will be fine. The Polish PEN-club found out about this, we were informed from outside the PEN-club, and such an informal group was created, which included Adam Pomorskyi from the Poles and Olia Hnatuk, a translator from Ukrainian into Polish, a professor at the University of Warsaw and the Kyiv-Mohyla Academy, a diplomat, a scientist who lived in Kyiv for many years, the author of wonderful texts. Myroslav Marynovych was involved in this group as a person with authority in the old writing and human rights circles, I joined, Andrii Kurkov is a fairly famous writer from Ukraine who writes in Russian, Leonid Finberh from the publishing house “Dukh i Litera” (Spirit and Letter), Yevhen Zakharov from the Kharkiv human rights group . This is all such an environment that was interacting for a long time, cooperating, and we understood each other. A congress was held with the participation of some old members of PEN, a new board was elected and this structure was registered with the Ministry of Justice, not without difficulties. It was already a Ukrainian PEN, not a PEN club, because the new ways penetrated into Britain as well, they remain gentlemen and ladies, but they decided that the club is something too lordly and arrogant and some kind of a closed structure, they are an open structure and that is why they are now avoid calling formations and collectives of non-writers of the PEN environment in other countries clubs and they called us the Ukrainian PEN.

  • My parents did not approve of my hobbies, they would have wanted me to have a stable normal profession. I was a child of emigrants who were very poorly integrated into the local community, we were connected to each other. It may sound a little strange because we are all Ukrainians, but there were many emigrants living in Lviv. This is a city of emigrants, a city that emerged as a new city after the war, a city from which its authentic population was removed, from both Wrocław and from Lviv and replaced by another population. Ukrainians from the east of Ukraine came here, emigrants fleeing from Poland came here, Jewish immigrants, Russians, people of other nationalities came here, and they all lived in such separate communities. My parents, I repeat, being emigrants, were not integrated with those old Lviv residents, from where future poets, scientists, and administrators came. I had to make my own way, and I was very lucky that at the age of sixteen I got into an archaeological expedition with Larysa Ivanivna Krushelnytska, a symbol, one of the symbols of Lviv, and a person deeply rooted in local traditions. And thanks to her, I got to know many interesting Lvivites.

  • When various Amnesty groups have already emerged in Ukraine, we hold congresses in different cities so that everyone understands that this is not only a Galician organization, but a Ukrainian organization in general. And such an illusion could arise from the fact that the first group appeared in Drohobych, where Myroslav Marynovych lived and worked, he later moved to Lviv, but the group continued to work. And the second group, group number two, appeared a few days later in Lviv, it was founded by a hippie, a member of the so-called “Dovira” (Trust) group, there was a movement of hippie-pacifists who preached refusal to serve in the armies of the socialist camp in the Polish and Soviet so as not to to fight with democracies, and he, being an active participant in the hippie movement from ... and until now, created the Amnesty International group as well, he was joined by the already mentioned Natalka Dulnieva, my acquaintance from the history faculty, her close friend and like-minded Svitlana Marintsova, with whom they embodied all their projects throughout their lives. They met at the university, it happens that people go through life together embodying certain values and certain projects. They worked for many years at Amnesty, then created an organization to help refugees and the persecuted. For example, they helped Chechens or Tajiks, or other representatives of discriminated groups from the Soviet Union, who came here to the border, and they handed them over to Polish human rights groups at the border to take care of them.

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    Lviv, 09.11.2022

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A person of many identities

Andrij Pavlyshyn 2022
Andrij Pavlyshyn 2022
photo: Post Bellum

Andrii Pavlyshyn was born on July 30, 1964 in Lviv in a working family, his mother is originally from Sudova Vyshnia in Lviv region, and his father is from the Lemko Region. Graduated with a gold medal from secondary school №27 (Lviv), was a member of the National Academy of Sciences, as a high school student took part in the archeological expedition in the flooding area of the Dnister HPP. In 1986, he graduated with honors from the Faculty of History of the Ivan Franko Lviv National University, specializing in “New and modern history”, after which he taught for 3 years in Lviv schools №№18, 42. Since 1988, he has been active in public and political life: a member of the board of “Prosvita” and “Memorial” societies, a deputy of the Lviv City Council of two convocations, one of the creators and the first elected chairman of the Social Democratic Party of Ukraine. In 1995-2006 cooperated with “Amnesty International”: coordinator of the group “Ukraine-2” (Lviv), member of the board and chairman of the Ukrainian association of “Amnesty International”. Since 1990, a program editor and editor-in-chief of the publishing department at “Prosvita”, in 1995-1999 - publishing house “Osnovy”, director of the “Osnovy-Zakhid” branch. In 1999-2002 – an editor of the independent cultural magazine “Ї” (Yi) (Lviv), active participant in the projects of the NGO “Ї”. From 2002 to 2006, he worked in “Lvivska Hazeta” (Lviv Newspaper) on various positions, including chief editor. 2003-2009 – a host of the weekly analytical program “Political Chessboard” on Lviv television. Since 2010 he has been a member of the executive board of the PEN Ukraine and a lecturer at UCU. Since 2014 he has been a coordinator of the annual program of events of the “Ukrainian-Jewish Meetings” foundation at the Book Forum in Lviv. Since 2022 he has been a columnist of the TV channel “Espreso”. Has numerous awards and honors.