O. Taran, PhD in History, Research Fellow

Rylsky Institute of Art Studies, Folklore and Ethnology of the National Academy of Sciences of Ukraine

DOI: https://doi.org/10.17721/1728-2640.2021.150.10


The article analyzes the main markers of the memorial tradition of the village cemetery. The process of modification, disappearance and appearance of new features of the memorial culture connected with the cultural space of the cemetery is considered. The permanent functioning of funeral rites and the state of preservation of rural necropolises is a strong tool for maintaining and activating cultural memory not only within the family or community, but also society as a whole. The age of digital communications allows the rapid borrowing of individual mortal practices, which are fixed by the methods of visual anthropology. All surveyed cemeteries are "new", arranged in the twentieth century. Over time, as the village grew, some cemeteries found themselves within settlements or close to them. The tombstone is installed in a year. Usually a metal or stone (granite, marble) cross or slab of different sizes and configurations is installed with a embossed cross on the ceiling itself or attached to its top. The signatures on the tombstones reflect the national language policy: graves marked in Ukrainian in the 1940s and 1960s, in 1970-2010 in Russian, and in the last decade the Ukrainian language has returned to personalized signatures and epitaphs. Marble and granite tombstones have all the hallmarks of urban "memorial fashion". Ecological culture is also actively introduced in rural cemeteries: every year the number of plastic flowers and wreaths on graves decreases during their arrangement, preference is given to living perennials and annuals. The main day of remembrance in the calendar of the people of Lokhvytsia district remains the day of remembrance on the next week after Easter - Provody. To this day, the cemetery remains a special public space of the village, where certain socio-cultural norms are broadcast and reproduced, and symbolic mechanisms of representation of the ritual practice of interaction between the dead and the living are activated.

Key words: village cemetery, grave, cross, Lokhvytsia district, tradition, borrowing, mortal practices.

Submitted: 06.09.2021

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