Books and Ideas: Eight years ago also, you described the enormous Russian preponderance in the Ukrainian cultural landscape – whether in terms of books publishing, TV programs, etc. Have things changed since then?
Volodymyr Vakhitov: Yes
Partially because we now have a 25% Ukrainian quota on local radio and TV . Second, more and more young people are replacing the old Soviet population and simply do not understand what it has to do with Russia. They might speak Russian or Ukrainian, but they self-identify as Ukrainians, they listen to Ukrainian music, read Ukrainian books, watch movies with Ukrainian dubbing, and it has become a new norm. Publishing in Ukrainian has also developed a lot, as it is more difficult to get a Russian book in a store than it was eight years ago. On the other hand, Russia is still a producer of an enormous amount of sitcoms, comedies, movies, and books (including some important translations that are not available in Ukrainian), so it is difficult to neglect this influence. What is important, though, is that many people have seen that it is possible to live and work completely in a “Russia-free” environment. They watch Ukrainian movies (which have started to appear, though some of them are of dubious quality), read Ukrainian books, watch Ukrainian TV programs, etc.