«Odvertyj lyst do vsix» by Sergiy Pylipenko. Latinization of Ukrainian writing in the day of national revival





An important stage in the history of Ukraine of the 20th century is the Ukrainian national revival, one of the centers of which was Kharkiv, as the Bolsheviks designated it as the capital of the Ukrainian SSR. Poets, writers, musicians, and other artists, as representatives of the national elite, played a key role in the revival of Ukrainian self-identification during the complex political processes of the first third of the last century. Creative associations of talented youth were the driving force of the Ukrainian renaissance. Serhii Pylypenko occupied a prominent place among the galaxy of Ukrainian writers of that time. Famous writer, editor of many Ukrainian newspapers, fable writer, and founder of the Union of Peasant Writers “Plough”. His intellectual heritage consists of a large number of articles, reviews, fables, and short stories in Ukrainian literature. In addition to his writing activity, Serhii Pylypenko is also known as a public figure. One of his public initiatives was the idea of transferring the Ukrainian script from Cyrillic to Latin. The writer’s proposal gained coverage precisely during the implementation of the project of the Bolshevik government of the USSR regarding the transfer of the languages of the nations to the Latin alphabet. The article examines the reasons and motives of the Soviet leadership regarding the translation of languages, and Serhii Pylypenko’s proposal to translate the Ukrainian alphabet into Latin. The activist’s request differed from the official policy of the Bolshevik government. The state policy of transferring the writing of different peoples was defeated due to some different reasons, including economic ones. And the proposal of the Ukrainian writer caused a discussion among the circle of specialists and became the subject of scientific discussion. However, the All-Ukrainian Orthographic Commission did not support the Latinization of the Ukrainian alphabet. The question posed by Serhii Pylypenko in 1923 remains relevant even in modern Ukrainian history. From time to time, the idea of translating the Ukrainian alphabet into Latin arises as a public initiative, mostly among culture or education workers. The unification of the script can become a prospect for integration with the countries of the world that use Latin in writing, but it can also become a problem, as a threat of losing the identity of the Ukrainian language. To date, the issue has not been raised officially at the state level and requires careful research by a circle of historians, linguists, cultural experts, etc.