Practice English Speaking&Listening with: Bukovina, a Ukrainian Land (1939) documentary

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[Trembita cries in the valley, The beautiful world is cruel to a girl]

[Because she is not loved. The poor thing cries in her room,]

[Unplaits her hair... And wanders in the forest and on the streets...]

Bukovian songs remind us: Provide the most jovial lyrics,

and Bukovians will find a melancholy melody to surround it.

In these melodies lies the whole history of this land.

[This girl was born unhappy...]

Here is an illiterate and unintelligent man. Why?

He says he does not know why.

His father asks for forgiveness, he is also illiterate. His entire life he ate his own potatoes.

He says "We eat potatoes and wander - deseased and ill."

"We neither write nor read."

"Nine out of ten of us are illiterate."

"Help us!"

Bukovina is beautiful. Some call it one of the most fascinating parts of Europe.

The poets sometimes call it heaven. A blanket of green land, the sweet Bukavina!

However, its people speak of it differently.

"The Hutsul glory is founded on blood."

In the earlier part of its history, Bukovina was part of Galician Principality.

A historic author remembers it as such

"A great Galician land"

"You sit high on your golden landscape"

"Mountains crawling on your border"

"With your metal crutches beneath"

"Create a path for your king"

After the Mongolians ruined the Galician Principality, Bukovina's future was set.

In the middle of the 14th century, Moldovian state was formed.

In the 16th century, the Turks took control of Bukovina.

By the end of the 18th century, the Austrian empire presented Bukovina to Poland.

These mountains were several times witness to gruesome

and unfair battles between Bukovians and their conquerors.

Bukovina remembers heroic contributions of Alexiy Dovbush

and Lukjan Kablitsy, as well as other legendary men.

When the Austrian Hungarian monarchy fell in 1918, Bukovina was given to Romania.

Upon Bukovina fell the dark night of Romania.

The streets were filled with Romanian policemen.

Weddings and funerals were conducted only after a bribe, people could speak only Romanian.

Ukranian peasants became so poor

that they were unable to purchase kerosene. Even matches were hard to buy.

As during ancient times, people carried scolding hot coal from home to home.

"The Hell of the Europe"

Henri Barbusse called Romania in his book "The Butchers".

Chernovtsi is the biggest city.

Among its 125,000 inhabitants were 10,000 unemployed and no Ukrainian school at all.

However there were 4,000 shops and 20,000 merchants.

The city is recognized easily by its architecture.

Here are the mansion of the Bukovian metropolitan.


Companies spent countless amounts of money on its construction.

From the Austrian emperor, Romanians were left a beautiful theatre building.

What is it like inside, however, nobody remembers. There is no actors company in Chernovtsi.

The only form of culture left to the people was the carousel.

Not just one, but three. They stood on a large city square in the heart of town.

Many young women from different corners of the land

came to make their heads dizzy here at the bazaar.

"This is the Romanian happiness, damn it":

Three thousand prostitutes and a hundred of brothels only in Chernovtsi.

Unbelievable, but true.

"Speak only Romanian."

"Speak only Romanian."

"Speak only Romanian."

Here is a factory built by the Romanian king.

The Bukovian worker worked 12 hours daily

in terrible conditions, like slaves worked in colonies.

To stay unemployed in Bukovina for a Ukranian meant the same as

expecting a slow, but inevitable death.

"We don't care about the future of non-Romanians!"

said the prime minister of Romania regarding the unemployed men of Bukovina.

All that is left of the fabric factories are the walls.

The sewing machines were all taken by the Romanians.

Even mines existing for dozens of years were torn down and filled up.

Oil resources were ruined.

They knew that sooner-- [film missing]

He waited and prepared to meet his brothers.

Hiding from the policemen in dark huts

women created red fabric for their future saviors.

In the quiet of the night when all seemed asleep in the mountains,

like a breeze of wind, a breath of freedom, a song of men from all over the world could be heard.

[The Internationale lyrics]

Happiness roared throughout Bukovina like a thunderstorm in the spring.

But certain men still looked at our army with indeterminate smiles.

They closed their stores and banks

to swam in the streets like fish in an aquarium.

Something they didn't like about us... Nor did we like them much.


These hooligans were quickly apprehended.

Police officer

Just look at them.

Romanian weaponry

Ukranian soldiers dropped it and went home.

These are our people: Bukovians.

Taken by the Romanians away from Bukovina they ran and tried to reach their home.

all they wanted was to go home.

Soviet land. People cried with happiness and ran as if someone chased them.

People displayed Soviet glory across all cities.

They spoke unforgettable, loving praise for the Red Army.

As it freed Bukovina, the Soviet power provided land to the peasants

that they could only dream about.

Bukovians celebrated the first Soviet harvest like a holiday.

They praised the Red Army, the Soviet power of the great Stalin and sang songs.

For the first time in their lives, the people prepared bread for themselves.

They reaped their harvest just like old times, with scythe and sickle.

[the traditional song]

The Romanian tractor stations now operated at full capacity.

Only in Chernovtsi will you find a policeman that looks like this.

The Romanian government didn't dare to close Chernovtsi's university.

However, the boyars did.

Only five Ukranian students studied in the university.

The other students made fun of them calling them "the representatives".

These five students represented the entire Ukranian population in Bukovina.

Now Chernovtsi's university has opened its doors for the youth of all nations.

Our Soviet professor has come to work in the village school.

This clever man has managed for an entire day

to avoid hitting, punishing and bringing any hooligan to his knees.

Enchanted, young students looked at this man as at miracle.

He was jolly and kind.

Children hurried up to their homes through mountain trails.

To their home they carried the Ukranian printed word

as well as the eagerness of a first day at school, a "Hello" from the professor

and the hope for a bright future.

The famous beech forests ("buk" in Russian) from which the name Bukovina was derived.

At the factory of Maora Kardata, the very best plywood is produced.

Amongst the beautiful forests here

60% of workers suffered from tuberculosis.

Unbelievable, but true.

The upper management ran away as soon as we arrived.

Plywood stayed in production without them.

The workers continued running the factory waiting for the Soviet officials to come.

For almost 600 years, the Ukranian people was torn apart.

Bukovina was ruled by five governments.

Nevertheless, any village you observe will make you say "This is Ukraine!"

Oppressors changed,

And the people kept their culture, language, architecture and clothing.

The Romanian policeman made his leaving from charges.

Any Ukranian styled drawings on homes were charged a fee.

Sometimes for one spot on a wall or a little bird or flower.

It didn't help! The nationalist spirit of the Ukranian people prevailed.

The people could never forget the Ukranian arts.

The Bukovian put so much love and effort into building his home,

That his hut remind us of painted picture or a toy.

More often than not, these homes were made up of diseased and illiterate families.

The unique form of Ukranian huts

Bukovians transferred to churches.

Bukovina is rich for people talents and crafts.

This teacher is both an artist and a poet.

This artist was given a cow as a gift for his work.

During the hard times of Romanian rule, he drew one hundred portraits

of Schevchenko, Franko, and others and gave them out as a slogan of freedom.

Here is the mother of Vladimir Kokoyachuk, the local painter.

Together they harvest their crop.

He has already made the portraits of comrade Lenin and comrade Stalin.

Now he draws the portrait of elder Ostap

without realizing that he, his own grandfather, and his mother

deserve their portrait made by a great artist.

Sophia Kosmachuk's talent speaks for itself.

Nobody can draw and embroider better

than the very best embroideresses of Bukovina

Maria Klimka, Tirina Klim and Fruzina Guley.

So where can you find the very best ornamental, wood-carved axes?

Of course at the home of professor of wood-carving, Vladimir Guley.

The Bukovian peasant does not purchase his clothes.

He makes his clothes by himself.

The traditional household prospers here as nowhere in Europe.

Bukovians breed a sheep for its wool used for upper clothing.

Kiptar is a fur vest worn both winter and summer.

Celebratory clothing is both beautiful and colorful.

Every lad and girl, no matter how poor he or she is,

each has a dress for special occassions created with his/her own hands.

Young ladies wear expansive crowns on their heads.

This is a sign of their virginity.

Bukovian celebratory clothing is a synthesis of all traditional artwork

just as it is an art itself.

The Bukovian carries this clothing upon his breast as a weapon against the repressor

for the same reason a soldier carries his rifle.

Bridesmaids visit the bride.

[the traditional song]

Friends visit the groom.

This autumn, many Bukovians prepare for marriage.

We asked, how can this be explained?

"Now we know that we will live good, and the only thing left is to find a wive"

The groom and the bride go separately to the coronation.

The bride accompanied by her bridesmaids.

The groom with groomsmen.

The bride is expected to cry a bit before the ceremony.

While rings are exchanged, bridesmaids help themselves to a meal.

The wedding couldn't be without their participation.

Before the wedding, neighbors bring the mother of the bride some food.

Most often, it is chicken.

This is where we get the saying

"We get married, chickens get death."

The groom comes for the bride on a horse, wearing a grey-coloured hat.

This is a rudiment of an ancient tradition of stealing the bride.

"Once I stole my old lady the same way and than hanged her around my neck!"

Bukovian villages are full of young lads, who have nothing to do.

One thing that young Bukovian people can't do is dance!

Their dancing isn't like our traditional, happy dances that cause even the Earth to shake!

The Bukovian dances discretely and carefully.

Here's how it worked before: You pay the policeman a sum of money

and he allows you to dance. If you don't pay, you don't dance.

This is why Bukovians got used to dance in secret.

[the traditional song]

[There is no such place in the world]

[Like our neighborhood]

[Let's walk through its beautiful places]

[Even if only for one hour...]

[the traditional song resumes]

And when you look at these people, having lived through a dark Romanian night

yet still having preserved themselves as great people

one thing comes to mind.

How wonderful will Bukovina become amongst the Soviet family

where Stalin's constitution opens up infinite possibilities for improvement!

[Tcheremoshna, Tcheremoshna (the river),]

[Your water is so clean!]

[A girl from Verchovyna (the region)]

[Your beauty is so great!]

[Tcheremoshna, Tcheremoshna,]

[Your water is so clean!]

[A girl from Verchovyna]

[Your beauty is so great!]

The End

The Description of Bukovina, a Ukrainian Land (1939) documentary