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A Historiographer of Kuban Ukrainian Folklore Studies (To the Anniversary of Viktor Chumachenko's Death)

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The authors of the publication:
Ivannikova Liudmyla
Bibliographic description:
Ivannikova, L. (2018) A Historiographer of Kuban Ukrainian Folklore Studies (To the Anniversary of Viktor Chumachenko’s Death). Folk Art and Etnology, 5 (375), 87–102.


Ivannikova Liudmyla

a Ph.D. in Philology, a senior research fellow at Ukrainian and Foreign Folklore Studies Department of the NASU M. Rylskyi Institute of Art Studies, Folkloristics and Ethnology


A Historiographer of Kuban Ukrainian Folklore Studies (To the Anniversary of Viktor Chumachenko’s Death)



Viktor Chumachenko is a famous scholar in literature, ethnographer and specialist in folklore, bibliographer, historian and regional ethnographer, talented poet. A review of V. Chumachenko works in the field of Ukrainian folkloristics is presented in the article. As a historiographer he has revealed the unknown pages of the biographies of Kuban and Ukrainian specialists in folklore, ethnographers, historians and cultural figures.

Viktor Chumachenko was born in the Krasnodar region. He has studied at the Philological Faculty of Kuban State University,at the post-graduate study at M. Horkyi Literary Institute in Moscow. Healso has worked on probation at the Philosophical Faculty of the Ukrainian Free University in Munich according to the habilitation program. During his post-graduate study, he has been engaged actively in the study of the Kuban region, collecting information about the local writers and scholars. He is known as an expert in literature, folklore and history of the Kuban Cossacks. In 1991 he has returned to Krasnodar. From 1992 till the last days of his life he has been working as a scientist and a teacher.

Viktor Chumachenko is the author and compiler of a number of scientific and popular science editions, over 600 scientific and publicistic articles, translations, the publications of documents on the Kuban history, diaries, memoirs. Thearticles written by thescientistare published in Russia, Ukraine, Germany, Australia, the USA and Canada. The scholar investigations, in particular those about the little-known figures of Kuban, are mainly based on the archival materials.

A large number of thescientist published works is dedicated to Yakiv Kukharenko. Viktor Chumachenko is the initiator of the regional scientific conference on the occasion of the 200th anniversary of Yakiv Kukharenko birthday. He is also the scientific editor of four issues of its materials entitled Kukharenko Readings. In addition to biographic and bibliographic data, the author focuses also on the folkloristic and ethnographic activities of the writer who has recorded the songs from the Black Sea region, legends and stories, written ethnographic narrations.

Study of the biography and archival heritage of Mytrofan Dykariv is a matter of the whole life of Viktor Chumachenko. He has dedicated a number of published works, both scientific and popular science articles, to M. Dykariv. V. Chumachenko has revealed, attributed and published the autobiography of the scientist, the significant part of his epistolary heritage, investigated M. Dykariv scientific relations with the prominent specialists in folklore and historians, with the T. Shevchenko Scientific Society and its ethnographic correspondents. Themajor part of V. Chumachenko published works on thistopicisconcentrated in Dykariv Readings. These are mainly the letters. The author of the article presents a brief review of these published works, paying attention to the unknown facts of M. Dykariv biography. These are M. Dykariv relationship and collaboration with M. Komarov, P. Kulish, O. Lazarevskyi, P. Pluhatyr, O. Piven. Interesting pages from the history of Folkloristics and Ethnography of Kuban are described in the letters.

V. Chumachenko has written a number of biographical essays on the Kuban folklore scientist and writer Oleksandr Piven. The publication of the letters of O. Piven to M. Dykariv with a solid preface in the ninth Dykariv Readings is considered to be one of the most significant among them. The life and creative way of the writer and folklore scientist as well as geography, genre composition and methods of his recordings, the folklorecollections,compiled by him,are described in theforeword. V. Chumachenko has highly appreciated the folklore records made by O. Piven.

The revealed and attributed correspondence of M. Dykariv with his correspondent, a peasant from Maikop Petro Pluhatyriov (Pluhatyr), is a real scientific windfall of V. Chumachenko. The scientist has published it in two issues of Dykariv Readings. The letters are used to get much information about the folkloristic activity of M. Dykariv. The songs, legends, stories, anecdotes, dialogues, rumors, sent by the correspondent to the scientist, are also published together with the letters of P. Pluhatyriov. These two published works are considered as a very important supplement to M. Dykariv scientific biography.

Viktor Chumachenko has dedicated a number of articles and archival sources publications to the folkloristic work of the composer and conductor Oleksandr Koshyts in the Kuban region. V. Chumachenko article entitled Folklore Activity of A. Koshits in the Kuban region is among them. He has found out the history of the musician’s folk records, which are considered to be lost. Some archival sources affirm that in 1909 Oleksandr Koshyts has prepared his records for publication. A collection of 400 songs has to describe the musical tradition functioning within the Russian-Ukrainian cultural frontier.

Considerable attention is paid by Viktor Chumachenko to Stepan Erastov as the prominent cultural figure of the Kuban region. Almost nothing is known about his folkloristic activity in Ukraine. The scientist has published his memoirs, letters and a number of articles about him. In particular, this is the paper S. I. Erastov Among Ukrainian Ethnographers and Specialists in Folklore, published in the 11th issue of Dykariv Readings. The scientific biography of S. Erastov is reconstructed after his autobiography, memoirs, diary, letters. The correspondence of S. Erastov with Klyment Kvitka, Agatanhel Krymskyi and Dmytro Revutskyi is published as an appendix to the article.

Along with the prominent figures, V. Chumachenko has also paid attention to the persons engaged in the Folkloristicsand Ethnography indirectly. Theseare K. Rosynskyi, I. Sbitniev, Ya. Myshkovskyi, V. Mova, I. Varavva, P. Korolenko, I. Popko, F. Shcherbyna, O. Bezhkovych, L. Lavrov, I. Cherednychenko, M. Sementsov. A number of the scientist published works is related to the kobzarstvo history in Kuban. A brief analysis of these studies is presented in the article.



history of folkloristic, historiography, regional studies of folklore.



  1. Burbela V., Chumachenko V. (2004) Issues of Kuban Identity and Problems of Regional Bibliology in the Letters of M. A. Dikarev to A. M. Lazarevskiy. Results ofFolkloric and Ethnographic Studies of Ethnic Culturesof the North Caucasus in 2003. Dikarev’s Lectures (10). Krasnodar, pp. 18–35.
  2. (2017) V. K. Chumachenko in His Friends’ and Colleagues’ Reminiscences. Legacy of the Ages, no. 4, pp. 107–114.
  3. Ivannikova L. (2018) He Loved Ukraine and Was her Most Faithful Son. Word andTime, no. 6, pp. 89–93.
  4. Ivannikova L. (2014) Yakym Bihday, A Collector, Publisher and Popularizer of Songs of the Black Sea Cossacks. Bulletin of the Zaporizhzhya National University.Philological Sciences, no. 2, pp. 98–112.
  5. Chumachenko V. (2005) The Index of Victor Chumachenko’s Publications on Ukrainian Studies (To the 50th Anniversary of His Birth). Sights ofUkraine. A Scientific Periodical, no. 3–4, pp. ІІ–XІІІ (Appendix).
  6. Slutskyi A. (2006) Viktor Kyrylovych Chumachenko, Whom I Have Known for a Long Time. Bulletin of the Ukrainian Culture Societyin Kuban, no.2 (47), pp. 5–6.
  7. Stryzhak O. (2000) Achievements of Ukrainian Studies in Kuban (The Collection of Ukrainian Literature and Folklore Materials (“Kozak Mamay”)). Folk Artand Ethnography, no.1, pp. 136–140.
  8. Trut V. (2004) A Significant Scientific Contribution. Results of Folkloricand Ethnographic Studies on the North Caucasus’Ethnic Cultures in 2003. Dikarev’s Lectures (10). Krasnodar, pp. 192–195.
  9. Fedoruk O. (2005) Modern Ukrainian Studies in Kuban. An Annotated Review of Publications. Sights ofUkraine, no.3–4, pp. 203–221.
  10. Chumachenko V. (2004) “In Memory of This Unusually Energetic and Sympathetic Man” (To the 150th Anniversary of M. O. Dykariev’s Birthday). Folk Art and Ethnography, no. 4, pp. 21–27.
  11. Chumachenko V. (2004) M. Dikarev and P.Kulish: To the Issue of Their Relations’ History.Resultsof Folkloric and Ethnographic Studies of EthnicCultures of the North Caucasus in 2003. Dikarev’sLectures (10) (scientific editing and compiling by M. Sementsov). Krasnodar, pp. 3–14.
  12. Chumachenko V. (2003) Letters from A. Piven to M. Dikarev as a Source of History of Kuban Ethnography and Regional Book Printing. Results of Folkloric and Ethnographic Studies of EthnicCultures of the North Caucasus in 2002. Dikarev’sLectures (9) (scientific editing and compiling by M. Sementsov). Krasnodar, pp. 3–11.
  13. Chumachenko V. (2004) South Russian Ethnography Development Problems in the Correspondence of M. A. Dikarev and M. F. Komarov. Results of Folkloric and Ethnographic Studies of Ethnic Cultures of the North Caucasus in 2003. Dikarev’s Lectures (10) (scientific editing and compiling by M. Sementsov). Krasnodar, pp. 3–17.