Cultural Amnesia In War-Torn Ukraine,

Declan Leary, associate editor of The American Conservative.

Who is the Tolstoy of the Ukrainians? Don’t you dare say Tolstoy.

Lest anyone think that America’s race radicals have a monopoly on historical erasure, the liberal elite of Ukraine have taken up their own campaign of posthumous cancellation. Leo Tolstoy, the great 19th-century writer, tops the list.

Born to a family of old nobility in Western Russia in 1828, Tolstoy is universally renowned for monumental works like War and Peace and Anna Karenina. He is also the namesake of a city square and subway station in Kiev, Ukraine—though maybe not for long. The capital’s city council is mulling the idea of renaming the landmarks after Vasyl Stus, a dissident Ukrainian poet of the Soviet era whose stature is a tiny fraction of the Russian’s.

The move is part of a broader effort to “decolonize” Ukrainian public culture, purging all potential links to the young Slavic country’s much larger neighbor. Professedly a rejection of Russian imperialism, the push is both foolish and doomed to fail. The choice of Tolstoy as a target illustrates one major reason why. Läs artikel