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Idle: Fairytale Character Map Raises Ire In Russia and Ukraine 146

Posted by timothy
from the hate-to-borscht-yore-bubble dept.
The downside of not having ones base of children's stories crafted and maintained by trained storytime engineers from the Disney Corporation has reared its warty head in Russia and Ukraine. A map of purportedly Russian folktale characters' haunts has drawn fire from Ukrainians, who object to what they see as the appropriation (from Ukraine) of such famous characters as miraculously strong Ilya Muromets, the gold-producing Speckled Hen, and Kolobok ("a cheerful talking cake who flees animals eager to eat him"). This seems like nothing that couldn't be cleared up with some artfully mis-pointed highway signs and a few tons of papier-mâché.
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Idle: Fairytale Character Map Raises Ire In Russia and Ukraine

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    • Just north-northwest of Nizhny Novgorod is what appears to be one of the Pokeymans [bulbagarden.net].
      • They are both based on the same origin point.... sort of. The phoenix myth originated in ancient egypt or thereabouts. One version traveled west, through greek and roman civilisation (Mutating along the way) and became eventually the russian Firebird. Another went east through Persia, on to China, and eventually inspired the Pokemon character designers to create ho-oh. They are related, but only very distantly.

        The Russian version also inspired another anime character more directly: http://www.kyotoguide. [kyotoguide.com]
      • Looks more like Moltres [bulbagarden.net]

  • Unfortunately (Score:5, Insightful)

    by mgiuca (1040724) on Saturday April 30, 2011 @10:57PM (#35988190)

    "Unfortunately, folkloric heritage is not regulated by international norms or by intellectual property rights," Marina Primenko, the creator of the Ukrainian map, said.

    Yes, very unfortunate. Because we need more historical culture to be tied up in intellectual property rights so rich people can sue other people who reference it.

    • Re: (Score:2, Interesting)

      I always have to marvel at the cognitive dysfunction of people who would rather have cultural antiquities locked away behind a mass of litigation. I can't tell if it is an occurrence of the 'ren-faire fallacy'(virtually everyone in medieval europe was a squalid peasant. virtually everyone at the ren-faire is pretending to be a knight or better...) where they think that they will be the ones who will end up owning it; or if it is a case of vindictive hurt feelings("I feel very strongly about the birthplace o
      • by Belial6 (794905)
        You must have been to different ren-faires than I have. The ones I've been to have had the majority of people dressed as peasents. Perticularly the women who take particular pleasure in being dirty whorish peasants. It's fun for all.
        • by sgt scrub (869860)

          i'm sorry but dirty whorish peasant women and lazy drunkard men are the property rights of irland. please disclose the location of the particularly whorish women or desist and retract your comment immediately. -- Really Intrusive Asshole Association

      • by JAlexoi (1085785)
        You mean like the Loire valley castles are effectively copyrighted?
    • It is very strange that you do not recognize sarcasm when you see it, yet still try to use it yourself.

    • "Unfortunately, folkloric heritage is not regulated by international norms or by intellectual property rights," Marina Primenko, the creator of the Ukrainian map, said.

      Yes, very unfortunate. Because we need more historical culture to be tied up in intellectual property rights so rich people can sue other people who reference it.

      Well, given that many of the fairy tales Disney re-tells come from Europe, I guess Disney wouldn't look very well in that case. ;-)

  • by The Wild Norseman (1404891) <tw.norseman@gmai l . c om> on Saturday April 30, 2011 @10:57PM (#35988196)

    Kolobok ("a cheerful talking cake who flees animals eager to eat him").

    The cake is a liar.

  • No shit (Score:3, Informative)

    by SquirrelDeth (1972694) on Saturday April 30, 2011 @10:59PM (#35988212)
    Russia always steals from the Ukraine (I'm a Ukrainian). At least this time it's just fairy tales. Last time they tried to starve us to death http://www.holodomorsurvivors.ca/ [holodomorsurvivors.ca]
    And Stalin's grandson excuses it saying genocide was not illegal in 1930's and is trying to sue the Ukraine http://www.kyivpost.com/news/nation/detail/58247/ [kyivpost.com].
    Screw the fairy tales I want justice for a genocide.
    • Re: (Score:2, Interesting)

      by oldhack (1037484)
      Stalin was a Georgian, though.
      • Hitler was Austrian.
        • by oldhack (1037484)
          Good point.
        • And Napoleon was a Corsican.

          ...Is there a pattern here?

          • Yeah. People who come in from other countries and end up ruling, tend to fuck things up.

            Hey, Iggy! GTFO!!

            • People who come in from other countries and end up ruling, tend to fuck things up.

              Oh, come on. The country was already in a mess when Obama took office.

              • What the heck has this got to do with Obama?

                "Iggy" is the nickname given to Michael Ignatieff who came from the US (born in Canada, but hasn't been here for years) to run the Liberal Party of Canada, and is now vying for the position of Prime Minister.

                • It's not obligatory to reply to the whole post. See those bits with grey bars down the side?

                  P.S. I hadn't heard of the person you're referring to, nor the city he comes from. The only Iggy I know of is the son of Mr and Mrs Pop. I just assumed it was a pretentious sig about some obscure B- movie or novel.

                  • Ok. So you're one of those people who thinks Obama's birth certificate must be fake, since you know for a fact that he wasn't born in the US, since you don't like him.

                    Either that, or it was a very subtle joke, which, due to the current crop of asshats making a big deal of that exact subject, doesn't come across as such.

          • by mangu (126918)

            Napoleon was a Corsican

            There was an Italian saying "non tutti corsicani sono banditi ma buona parte"[sp?]

    • you know what you need to do.

      • Would you say that to a Jew?
        Remember according to the Russians genocide was not illegal till the 90's.
        • Would you say that to a Jew? Remember according to the Russians genocide was not illegal till the 90's.

          I'll bite. Jews weren't the only ones who were slaughtered nor were they the majority. I assume you're referring to WWII which was responsible for many more Russians deaths at the hand of the Nazis. Hitler was bad but Stalin was much worse. Your view point seems very American. In Poland the Holocaust has more Catholic undertones due to the purge of the clergy (among others).

          • In Poland the Holocaust has more Catholic undertones due to the purge of the clergy (among others).
            Than why did the Catholic’s get Hitler elected and fund his army? And why has the Catholic church hid Nazi war criminals?
      • by Hatta (162192)

        Mod parent up funny.

    • Re:No shit (Score:4, Informative)

      by tetromino (807969) on Sunday May 01, 2011 @01:30AM (#35988808)

      they tried to starve us to death

      Who's "they"? Do you mean Stalin (a Georgian)? Or maybe you are talking about the (ethnic Ukrainian) communist functionaries who sent Stalin fake statistics to try to convince him that his economic policies were working well and that there was no starvation in Ukraine? And who is "us"? Because the entire grain belt of the Soviet Union (covering parts of Russia, Belarus, Ukraine, and Kazakhstan) was starving in 1932-1933. Millions of ethnic Russians starved to death too, yet today the Ukrainian authorities are cynically trying to appropriate the tragedy for themselves and portraying the event as an Ukrainian genocide by the evil Russians.

      • by eugene2k (1213062)

        Well, gladly, today they are not. The previous administration was all about that crap. I take it this guy is a fan who only sees what he wants to see.

      • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

        by tetromino (807969)
        And to expand on my point: the 1932-1933 Soviet famine wasn't genocide. It was a horrific man-made accidental disaster that affected the entire Soviet grain belt with no regard for ethnicity, and was caused by a combination of poorly thought-out and brutally implemented collectivization, habitual use of fake statistics, and a bureaucratic culture where underlings were afraid to tell their higher-ups that the higher-ups' "wise policies" were rapidly leading to disaster. Thirty years later, the same scenario
        • man-made accidental disaster

          Something's weird with that phrase.

      • Who's "they"? Do you mean Stalin (a Georgian)? Or maybe you are talking about the (ethnic Ukrainian) communist functionaries who sent Stalin fake statistics to try to convince him that his economic policies were working well and that there was no starvation in Ukraine?

        While there may have been general starvation as a result of Stalin's failed policies, there were special policies put in place that applied *only* to areas where Ukrainians were dominant. Such as the law that if a collective farm failed to meet its quota, agents of the government would move in and seize 15 times that farm's quota, leaving that farm with no food at all.

        Exact numbers are hard to come by, but the best estimates are that around 8 million people died in that famine, about 5 million of whom just

        • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

          by tetromino (807969)

          15 times that farm's quota

          Not quite. The law that you are referring to [wikisource.org] (passed by the Politburo of the Ukrainian Communist Party, which at the time was led by an ethnic Pole [wikipedia.org]) stated that if a farm failed to meet its quota, the farm could be subject to fines of up to 15 monthly quotas of meat. Even if government agents decided to apply the maximum penalty and to seize the fine immediately, in theory the farm would still be left with grain and vegetables.

          • by JAlexoi (1085785)
            Ukrainian nationalists are no better than any other for blaming some nation for all evil. All and any nationalities have their barbaric bloody tyrants. Ukrainians are no exception. Fact of the matter is that a bloody tyrant was in power and, while unfortunately his birth city is still "sacred" in Gerogia, literally slaughtered everyone to his left or right. I can attest by having grandparents dead(famine, 1932) and exiled from south of Russia.
          • There is something ugly about people who come into a discussion to 'fact-check' air-brush historical atrocities. Clearly you've done your homework on the matter and have an agenda behind your attempts to soften history's judgment of the murderous actions of the Soviet Communists in the 1930's. For goodness sake, tell us what that agenda is.

        • Re:No shit (Score:4, Informative)

          by JAlexoi (1085785) on Sunday May 01, 2011 @08:03AM (#35989900) Homepage
          Hitler executed genocide of jews. The massacre in Rwanda was a genocide. The orchestrated famine of 1933 was not a genocide, by definition. Because it was not targeting an ethnic group. Purely cynically, when 37.5%(3/8) of deaths are not of the target ethnic group(s) it's not genocide.
          And every time I hear that, I am reminded that a few people in my family died in that famine. On both sides! One is Ukrainian and the other one is Russian. And I have the graves in Ukraine and Russia to prove it.
          So those nationalists in Ukraine, that paint the picture of Russians(and they truly mean ethnicity, not citizenship) being bloodsuckers, are the usual variety nutjobs. And they have their academics that try to prove that Russians are actually slavinised finns, that the treaty of Pereslavl was not what it was, etc...
      • The Ukrainians did not post posters in Russia that said eating your dead babies was barbaric nor did the Ukrainians force the Russians to stock the stores with food they could not buy when western reporters were in Kiev.
        • by JAlexoi (1085785)
          A) If you're Ukrainian, then spell it like your government wants you to - Kyiv.
          B) Most of those "Russians" were most definitely not Russian.
    • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

      Dude. The notion that Ilya Muromets is "stolen" from Ukraine is pure BS, because when the real-world prototype of that folk hero actually lived, our ancestors lived in a single country called Kievan Rus, spanning most of today's European Russia and Ukraine. In a similar vein, The Tale of Igor's Campaign is equally a "great work of Russian literature" and "a great work of Ukrainian literature" - well, for sure, because it was written in a language that was an ancestor to ours both!

      Both Russia and Ukraine (a

      • How is this a troll? This is possibly the most historically accurate and level headed post yet. Yes, all of us Eastern Slavs (Russians, Ukrainians and Belarussians) share a close common heritage, and a lot of our folklore will be shared.

        And yes, it was the Bolsheviks and not the Russians per se that are to blame. Don't tar an entire people by the actions of a douchebag villainous political party that held the country by force and bullying. Russians are yet to have a level headed ruler since their independen

    • Re:No shit (Score:4, Insightful)

      by shutdown -p now (807394) on Sunday May 01, 2011 @02:41AM (#35989014) Journal

      One other thing worth keeping in mind while visiting the links provided.

      While a major famine with very high death toll did happen, and it is quite likely that it was, at least in part, orchestrated by communist authorities, there has been a great deal of falsified materials [wikipedia.org] in various articles on the subject, especially photos. For example, there is an information stand in Kiev describing Holodomor, but the most prominent photo - the one with the actual pile of corpses - is actually of a village near Saratov, during the Russian famine of 1921. Another popular photo set is from the US Great Depression - both have been prominently features as "horrors of Holodomor" in various official Holodomor-related thematic expositions in Ukraine and abroad.

      In other words, same business as usual - when you see someone paint you a picture with angels on one side being tormented by fiery demons on the other, make sure to check your sources. The gist of it may well be true, but the representation is often exaggerated, and there's plenty of distorted information from both sides. If you want solid information, you should read books written by professional historians on the matter (and, preferably, from a "neutral" country, not either side to the conflict), rather than websites set up those with an ax to grind.

    • Re: (Score:2, Interesting)

      by mangu (126918)

      Stalin's grandson excuses it saying genocide was not illegal in 1930's

      Yes, it was [wikipedia.org]: "The fact that internal law does not impose a penalty for an act which constitutes a crime under international law does not relieve the person who committed the act from responsibility under international law."

      The only reason why Stalin wasn't tried at Nuremberg was because a high level bureaucrat [wikipedia.org] at the US government was a Soviet agent. This book [anyoldbooks.com] shows some interesting plans the US and Britain had to invade Europe from the south, instead of northern France. According to the author, it was Sovi

      • by moortak (1273582)
        The is a much better reason than Alger Hiss that Stalin wasn't tried at Nuremburg. He was the sitting head of one of the countries holding the trials.
    • by ultranova (717540)

      And Stalin's grandson excuses it saying genocide was not illegal in 1930's and is trying to sue the Ukraine http://www.kyivpost.com/news/nation/detail/58247/ [kyivpost.com].

      I find it utterly hilarious that someone is invoking human rights in defence of Stalin. Whiskey Tango Foxtrot indeed.

    • by mirix (1649853)

      Ukrainians don't say "the Ukraine". They don't even have a definite article in the first place.

      The famine was a trainwreck for sure, but being perpetuated by multiple ethnicities (incl. ukrainians) and the brunt was felt by multiple ethnicities (incl russians), it wasn't genocide.

      troll harder.

  • The summary seems awfully familiar... it reads like the filter-poisoning crap you get tagged onto the end of spam that sneaks past your spam filter.

  • In Soviet Russia, folkloric heritage disputes YOU!!
  • I'm so glad that in America our media conglomerates have taken upon themselves the duty to define and police our beloved characters. I shudder to think what would happen in 300 years if Mickey Mouse was allowed to move into public domain. We'd probably have those damn, dirty Canadians trying to say that he lived in Ottawa or something.
  • by tetromino (807969) on Sunday May 01, 2011 @12:44AM (#35988642)
    Back in the middle ages, when these fairy tales were created, Russians and Ukrainians were one, united ethnic group speaking one language (it took many centuries for the languages and cultures to drift apart, and Ukrainians didn't really start to develop a separate national identity until the 19th century); so claiming that an ancient fairy tale character is exclusively Ukrainian or exclusively Russian is utterly ridiculous. Unless, of course, that character is somehow firmly tied to a particular geographic location. One such example is Ilya Muromets, who (as you can guess from the name) is from the town of Murom [wikipedia.org], located in Russia, 400 miles north-west of the Ukrainian border. The insane people claiming Ilya Muromets exclusively for Ukrainian folklore have clearly failed both history and geography.
    • by gblackwo (1087063)
      Regionally, where Ilya Muromets came from is known today as the Ukraine. I think that is their point.
      • by gblackwo (1087063)
        Maybe I just misremembered from my Russian culture- my mistake.
      • by tetromino (807969)

        where Ilya Muromets came from is known today as the Ukraine

        Ilya Muromets came from Murom [wikipedia.org]. Murom is and has always been in Russia, not Ukraine. And it's in the solidly Russian part of Russia; the territories where Ukrainians form a major part of the population are hundreds of miles to the south.

      • We have very little clue where Ilya Muromets actually came from. The problem is that, as most folk heroes, it is a mythic figure that has gathered the traits of many real-world persons over the centuries, as folk stories were told and retold, with each teller adding their own spin. Consequently, there are several candidates for the role of the original prototype, and explanations for the "Muromets" nickname - only one of which is about Murom as origin. There are also several villages, all over the country,

        • by Sique (173459)

          But Muromets just means "from Murom". So we know where the folk tale puts Ilya Muromets - to Murom.

          • by JAlexoi (1085785)
            If you actually read the stories, you'll notice how strange he moves around. On his way to Kiev he makes a huuuge detour. So probably his title Muromets was added later or in honour of Murom. The price he visits references Kievan prices spanning 130years. And the tales are definitely not precise enough to establish his origin. In fact his nickname does not indicate his relation to Murom or any geographical place for that matter.
          • If you look through all the related folk tales, he was not always called "Muromets". Other alternative spellings include "Muravits", "Morovlin", "Muravlin", "Muravlenin" etc. Indeed, the reason why this whole fuss was raised is because Ukraine has a city named "Morovsk", which also happens to have several places around it with names corresponding to those in folk tales about Ilya.

  • My wife is from Tbilisi, Georgia and she has told me this is nothing new. Russia has a long history of taking credit for everything in the caucus, from regional foods, to traditions, to even attempt the world to think actors and singers are of Russian origin.

    I am not sure what they get out of it. Perhaps they attempt using it as tourism lure, or a local morale thing. For the most part, the other countries have made sure the rest of the world knows better.

    • Russia has a long history of taking credit for everything

      If Russia had its way, would it be "Russia on My Mind" [wikipedia.org]?

      in the caucus

      I thought Georgia ran a primary, not a caucus [wikipedia.org]. Did you mean Caucasus?

    • My wife is from Tbilisi, Georgia and she has told me this is nothing new. Russia has a long history of taking credit for everything in the caucus, from regional foods, to traditions, to even attempt the world to think actors and singers are of Russian origin.

      Yes, we even take credit for that 30 million (or what's the purported count these days?) murdered by Stalin - who, coincidentally, was a Georgian. Damn Russians, always stealing them great achievements of poor and oppressed caucasian people. ~

      • by Alex Belits (437) *

        300 millions. It will never be sufficiently impressive unless the number of "victims of Stalin" exceeds total population of the country (and I would therefore not exist because my ancestors would be all dead).

        Really, it's around two millions (actually persecuted by Stalin who actually died as a result of it -- executed or while imprisoned). It's still two millions too many, but it places Stalin among some pretty ordinary mass-murdering heads of states, does not turn him into some Hitler-eclipsing monster th

    • Russia has a long history of taking credit for everything

      Kirk: Does everyone know about this wheat but me? Chekov: Not everyone, it's a Russian inwention!

    • by 21mhz (443080)

      Perhaps your wife could provide some examples?
      All I could think of where the due credit may not have been given is kefir [wikipedia.org], but only because its production was industrialized outside Caucasus, and this wonderful dairy product has been widely consumed all over Russia (and Ukraine, and elsewhere) ever since.

      With actors and such, it's even more nuanced. If a Georgian actor plays in Russian films or plays, is recognized by many Russians, sometimes taking a lasting place in the Russian culture, that makes them a R

    • by JAlexoi (1085785)
      Tell your wife that a lot of Russians will gladly give back all the "legacy" of Joseph Jughashvili and in addition we'll give you the option of taking Gagarin as your...
    • KIRK: Does everybody know about this wheat but me?
      CHEKOV: Not everyone, Captain. It's a Russian invention.

  • No worries about this. I mean, nobody ever got into a war over some fairy stories. Unless you include someone elses religious stories. Lik the Bible or the Koran.

  • Idiot (Score:4, Insightful)

    by Digital Vomit (891734) on Sunday May 01, 2011 @02:34AM (#35989004) Homepage Journal

    "Unfortunately, folkloric heritage is not regulated by international norms or by intellectual property rights," Marina Primenko, the creator of the Ukrainian map, said.

    No, that's actually a very, very good thing.

  • "i'll get youuu, disneyy, and your little talking mouse tooo AH hahahahahaaaa"

  • It may look like a total non-issue from an American point of view, but I think there are quite a few in the rest of the world who have annoyed - or even incensed - by the constant, superficial and so very American tendency to take the tales of other countries, get them completely wrong and produce some totally vapid "Grand Epic" with Richard Burton and Elizabeth Taylor or, good grief, some idiotic superhero cartoon. That there are still countries in the world whose cultural heritage hasn't been commercialis

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