at war

The Culture Fights Back project to share stories of artists and civil society representatives who have joined the Armed Forces of Ukraine.

Read the stories of Ukrainian writers and poets who continue to talk about the realities of war, still publishing books and poetry while risking their lives every single day.

Artem Chapeye

Artem Chapeye is a Ukrainian writer, translator, reporter and traveller. As a translator of Mahatma Gandhi’s texts and believer in non-violent political change, he took up arms and now defends Ukraine.

Suspending his studies in the Kyiv-Mohyla Academyin 2006, he went to travel across America; he described his impressions of the United States in the book Adventure (2008). In Ukraine, he is best known for his resonant autobiographical book Dad on maternity leave (2016), in which he tells a tragicomedy about a father of two children living in a patriarchal Ukrainian society. His books were included in the top 5 of the BBC Books of the Year in 2011, 2014, 2015 and 2018. Chapeye’s stories and reports have been published in English, Polish, French, Czech, Romanian, Lithuanian and Slovenian. 

Witnessing the killing of protesters during Euromaidan in 2014, Artem became a supporter of nonviolent resistance. However, a full-scale invasion in 2022 forced the man to defend his country and his family with a weapon. In his interviews, the writer concludes that, unfortunately, pacifist ideas are not very helpful against Russian cruise missiles and bombs. 

On the first day of the full-scale invasion, Artem evacuated his children from Kyiv. He did not want them to see the horrors of war and people being murdered on the roads. After leaving his relatives in a relatively safe place, the writer joined the military and has been in service since February 27. 

Even during his military service, Artem finds time to reflect on the war. In November 2022, together with Ukrainian writer and serviceman Artem Chekh, he participated in the Munich Literary Festival, where he shared his thoughts and writings with an international audience.

Artem Chapeye Facebook-page