What important events for Ukrainian culture took place in 2023?
In 2023, Ukraine managed not only to return the Scythian gold but also to add to its contribution to the UNESCO World Heritage List. Find out more about the significant events that took place this year and what Ukraine has achieved despite the war
The year 2023 was full of events, including those related to the historical and cultural heritage of Ukraine. Thus, the country managed to return a number of very important artifacts and property to the territory of the country, despite all the risks and threats to resume the work of a number of cultural institutions of national importance, as well as to restore its presence in the international arena.
Read more about the most important events of 2023 for Ukrainian culture in the article below with a link to Suspilne Kultura.
After 10 years of trials and negotiations, Ukraine returns Scythian gold
After the fateful exhibition "Crimea: Gold and Secrets of the Black Sea" at the Allard Pearson Museum in the Netherlands, which took place at the time when russia illegally annexed the Crimean peninsula, Ukraine had to prove its right to exhibits from four Crimean museums in court for 10 years.
It was a long and difficult process, but in November 2023, by a court decision, the artifacts were transferred to the National Museum of History of Ukraine, where they will be stored until the de-occupation of Crimea.
Read more about why Scythian gold is important for the world's cultural heritage and Ukraine in particular here.
The complicated history of the Kyiv Cave Monastery
For the past 35 years, the Ukrainian Orthodox Church of the moscow Patriarchate has been located on the territory of the main shrine of Ukraine, and in 2013, during the Yanukovych administration, the government transferred the property to it for free use.
Another important achievement is that in November 2023, the Great Lavra Bell Tower began receiving visitors for the first time in 30 years. And on December 24, on Christmas Eve, the Academic Choir of the Ukrainian Radio under the direction of Chief Conductor Yulia Tkach performed "Shchedryk" for the first time.
Ukraine joins the UNESCO World Heritage Committee for the first time
Unfortunately, it was the constant missile attacks by russia that became a strong argument in the negotiations between Ukraine and UNESCO. After all, Ukrainian cultural heritage is constantly under threat of destruction. And this year, for the first time in history, the country joined the UNESCO World Heritage Committee, which opens up many new opportunities for Ukraine and opens the door to international cooperation. And now the country can add sites to the List of World Heritage in Danger.
According to Suspilne Kultura, in September 2023 alone, 20 sites located in Ukraine were added to the International List of Cultural Property in Need of Enhanced Protection, and in December of the same year, 5 more were added.
Ukraine is restoring its cultural life
In 2022, Ukraine's presence in the international arena, particularly in various cultural events, was very limited. But in 2023, a large number of national events returned and started working offline. Also, despite all the risks and the war, new art and cultural centers continue to open in Ukraine.
Moreover, Ukrainian cultural figures have received numerous awards and been nominated for prestigious prizes. For example, Mstislav Chernov's Ukrainian film 20 Days in Mariupol is among the contenders for the 2024 Oscars in two categories. Also on the list is Roman Liubyi's film Iron Butterflies, about the MH17 disaster in Donetsk region.
Derussification in 2023
Although it may seem that renaming streets is out of date, de-russification is actually one of the most important components of restoring and preserving Ukrainian identity and culture. For example, one of the most striking events of 2023 was the replacement of the soviet coat of arms on the Motherland monument with the Ukrainian trident. You can see how one of the main symbols of Ukraine has changed here.
The second important event for the country was the transition of the Orthodox Church of Ukraine and the Ukrainian Greek Catholic Church to the New Julian calendar and the ban of the UOC-MP in Ukraine. So, on December 25, the first official celebration of Christmas in Ukraine according to the new calendar took place.
Every small and big event is not only a step towards preserving Ukrainian history and culture, but also a contribution to Ukraine's victory. After all, it is the Ukrainian character and identity that help the people to fight unwaveringly against the evil and insidious enemy!
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