ROADS OF THE DONBAS IN THE ARTISTIC CONCEPT OF SERHII ZHADAN (based on the novel “The Orphanage”)
The article explores the features of comprehension of the Russian-Ukrainian war in contemporary artistic consciousness basing on the novel “The Orphanage” by Serhii Zhadan. It is revealed that the first attention of the author is drawn to the territory that is changing due to the constant movement of the central character. The narrative of the novel is built on the topos of the road, as a way to broadly describe a collective portrait of the inhabitants of the East, outline their life strategies and attitudes to war. In “The Orphanage” the territory of Donbas is described in several dimensions: an integral part of the state, which needs urgent help of all Ukrainians; native land, place of memory and reminiscences; deadlock, lethally dangerous land from which there is no way out. Road in the novel is represented by the following locations: trails, paved road, railway tracks, off-road. On his way, the protagonist – Pasha, a school teacher, meets people of different social status, age, personal experience, political views and moral attitudes, but united by a common desire to survive and return to the familiar world. Each of them has their own vision of war. This issue is a specific marker that divides the people into “ours” and “others”. In the beginning of the novel, the protagonist avoids the choice and adheres to the position of a passive observer; however, overcoming the lethally dangerous road, getting to know the inhabitants of the East and getting to know his nephew in a new way, Pasha learns to take responsibility. A special place in the character system is Sasha’s image. He is a representative of the youngest generation, although he is brought up in the orphanage, but unlike the rest of the characters, he has a family consciousness and a clear pro-Ukrainian position.