Modern Animal

Modern Animal

209 pages


Genre: Literature
After Lucky Breaks and War Diary, this is the third book by one of the most important Ukrainian voices of our time – a fabulously realistic panorama of the present day

Full of laconic humor and bitter truth, these lectures and reports, stories and dialogues deal with possible and impossible animal incidents – such as a tiger in the cellar of a Kiev café, a rabbit falling in the Caucasus or countless dogs and cats living together in a tiny apartment – so that the boundaries between humans and animals become increasingly blurred. It is the small incidents, the quiet anecdotes and the short sentences with which Yevgenia Belorusets' prose reveals the essence of mankind. In her ethnographically precise and sober poetic language, this fictional lecture series creates a space for marginalized experiences in today's Ukraine, which have also been marked by violence since at least 2014 and whose literary treatment is based on a deeply human attitude. For if it is true that man is a wolf to man, then it seems only logical that we humans narrate what we want to be, what we seek and strive for, what we do to each other and endure together, through our relationships with animals. In the strict form of the scientific treatise, which is exaggerated, ironized and further undermined with each text, the voices of different narrators merge into a chorus in which it is not always clear who is speaking – and to whom.


Women of Europe Award 2023
German title: Über das moderne Leben der Tiere
ISBN: 978-3-7518-0967-2
Publisher: Matthes & Seitz Berlin
Publication date: 2024
Sold to: France


Lectures with photographs

Sample translation

Russian original available

Yevgenia Belorusets is a Ukrainian photographer, artist and writer who lives between Kyiv and Berlin. She is concerned with the intersections of art, media and society, and involved in a number of cultural and political initiatives. Her first book Lucky Breaks has been critically acclaimed and translated in 10 languages. 

By the same author(s)

“Her ability to speak from the point of view of an animal makes the book not only like a folktale but also, as the press avows, a curious form of autofiction. – Los Angeles Review of Books