The History of the Institute of Philology

Since the day of its foundation Kyiv University has been famous for the development of the humanities. Classical philology as well as the Russian language and literature has always taken the core position among the humanities in the University.
The Department of Russian Literature and Linguistics belonged to the Faculty of Philosophy. In 1850 the Department joined the Faculty of History and Philology.
Since 1834 foreign languages have been taught at Kyiv National University. In 1906 within the Faculty of History and Philology the Department of Romance/Germanic languages was founded. A number of prominent scholars worked devotedly for the Faculty, among them were: M.P.Dashkevych, I.V.Sharovolsky and S.V.Savchenko.
Back then the Ukrainian language as well as other languages spoken in czarist Russia was in plight, for it was treated as a regional dialect. The language policy of the czarist government shattered any hopes for national languages to be recognized, furthermore they were being gradually eradicated from the map of czarist Russia by means of Russianizing all the spheres of social life. By establishing Kyiv University the czarist government aimed to transform it into the stronghold of Russification of the so-called “South-Western Region”. Thus neither the Ukrainian language, nor the Ukrainian culture could be among the subjects taught at the Faculty of Philology of the newly-built university. An anti-Ukrainian mind was constantly fostered within the students. Student libraries had a limited number of trustworthy Ukrainian literature.
M.Maksymovych, the first rector of the University, was one of the first Ukrainian philologists who belonged to the new generation. In the 40s the topics on the Ukrainian philology were included in the lectureship of M.Kostomarov, who was then an associate professor in the University. After 1847 when Kyrylo and Mefodiy brotherhood broke up, the Ukrainian studies almost came to a standstill.
The revival of the movement for the overall development of the Ukrainian language started in the 60s of the XIX century. The students of the University, supported by M.Pyrohov, organized schools where working people could study in Ukrainian; they also wrote guides in Ukrainian. Soon the czarist government closed these schools. In May 1861 University graduates delivered their speeches near the coffin of Taras Shevchenko in their native language. These were the first public speeches in Ukrainian back then, thus they maintained new spheres of the language usage. They were heedless of the official state intrusions. This movement was fostered by the University lecturers: M.Drahomanov, P.Zhytetsky, M.Dashkevych, V.Perets’ and others. The renowned scholars and lecturers M.Zerov, P.Filipovych, M.Dray-Hmara, S.Maslov, D.Chyzhevsky, O.Nazarevsky and others obtained profound knowledge in literature in the University. V.Rezov was the first to read a course in the history of the Ukrainian language and its dialects in 1913-1914.
The Slavic languages and literature began to be taught in the 40s of the XIX century. In 1842 the department of Slavic philology was established. In 40s-50s it was obligatory for all the graduates to know the Slavic literatures. In 1863 the department of the foreign literature was established. The departments of the Ukrainian language and literature were established at the Faculty of philology in September 1917 in the period of the Ukrainian People’s Republic. Since then the Ukrainian language and history of the Ukrainian literature have occupied the principal position in the faculty as separate subjects.
In the 20s the Ukrainian language and the Ukrainian literature were taught in the Faculty by prof. Y.Tymchenko, M.Zerov, P.Fylypovych and others. In the 30s the majority of them were repressed.
In 1937 the faculty of Western-European languages and literature was established at Kyiv National University, in 1962 it was renamed as “the faculty of foreign languages” with two departments: the department of philology and the department of translation.
In the 60s a number of foremost Ukrainian scholars: O.Andriyevska, O.Biletsky, Y.Zhluktenko, N.Rayevska, T.Yakymovych and others became principal lecturers in the faculty.
In the 70s the faculty of foreign languages was renamed as the faculty of Romance/Germanic philology. As a result, new departments appeared – the department of theory and practice of translation from Romance languages, the department of theory and practice of translation from Germanic languages, the department of Spanish philology, the department of the English language for science faculties and the department of the English language for humanities. In 1991 the faculty of the Romance/Germanic philology was renamed as the faculty of foreign philology. In 1992 O.I.Cherednychenko, Full Professor, academician in the Academy of Sciences of Higher Education of Ukraine, the honorary man of science and technology of Ukraine, was elected the dean of the faculty. In 1997 he was reelected to the same posture. A.D.Gnatuk, PhD, associate professor, was appointed a vice-dean for science, while A.M.Viazankina, PhD, associate professor, was appointed a vice-dean for educational affairs.
For the last several years new departments have been established: the department of Hellenistics and the department of the English language for the Faculties of Mathematics and Physics.
In 1992 the Faculty of Philology established two new departments: the department of history of the Ukrainian language and the department of modern Ukrainian literature. The theory of language and literature as well as the Ukrainian language as a foreign one takes a significant position in the process of education.
In September 1989 the department of Ukrainian philology was established. It provides courses of the Ukrainian language in all the faculties. In September 1992 the department of folklore study was established. In 1993 there started the admission of the students to “The classical philology” speciality ; the department of Slavonic philology formed its Polish section and started training students in the Croatian language
The rapid development of the history of linguistics, translation studies and literary critics is underway thanks to prof. Prokopova L.I., prof. Shahova K.O., prof. Starykova O.M., prof. Cherednychenko O.I., prof. Karaban V.I., prof. Kruchkov G.G., prof. Saharchuk L.I., prof. Beh P.O., prof. Zhluktenko N.Y., prof. Hetman Z.O., prof. Bielova A.D., prof. Burbelo V.B., prof. Solomarska O.A., and many others.
The Faculty of foreign philology contained 15 departments, 3 laboratories, the laboratory for simultaneous interpreting, the computer class. The assembly hall of the humanities building is situated at 14 T.Shevchenko Avenue, and is equipped with special facilities for simultaneous interpreting.
On the 12th of November there started the reorganization of the faculty of Philology, the faculty of foreign philology and the Department of Oriental studies into the Institute of Philology of Taras Shevchenko Kyiv National University.
Nowadays the Institute of philology provides courses in Czech, Croatian, Serbian, Bulgarian, Latin, Old Greek, Korean, Persian, Uzbek, Azerbaijani, Georgian, Hindi, Indonesian, Italian, New Greek, Dutch, Swedish, Ukrainian and Russian as foreign languages.
Further information is expected in 2 months.
For more details click on the bookmarks at the top of the website.

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