Andriy Sodomora, "The Tears and Smiles of Things: Stories, Sketches, Meditations" (Academic Studies Press, 2024)


An evocative collection of vignettes and essays from Ukraine’s “voice” of classical antiquity, now available in English for the first time.

Inspired by Virgil’s exquisitely ambivalent phrase “sunt lacrimae rerum” (there are tears of/for/in things), Andriy Sodomora, the Ukrainian “voice” of classical antiquity, has produced a series of original vignettes and essays about things: the big things in our lives (like happiness, loneliness, and aging); the small things we do or see daily, rarely paying attention to them (like a tree’s shadow or the kernels on an ear of corn); and the things (i.e., objects) to which we form connections. The selected stories presented here are the first English translations of Sodomora’s profoundly intellectual and intertextual prose. Through his nostalgic memories and recollections, Sodomora takes readers on a journey through western Ukraine, as well as through world literature, from ancient Greece and Rome to the poetry of Paul Verlaine and Federico García Lorca.

The Tears and Smiles of Things: Stories, Sketches, Meditations (Academic Studies Press, 2024) has been published with the support of the Translate Ukraine Translation Program. The book was translated by Roman Ivashkiv and Sabrina Jassi.

Garima Garg is a New Delhi based journalist and author.

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Garima Garg

Garima Garg is a New Delhi based journalist and author. Her most recent publication is Heavens and Earth: Story of Astrology Through Ages and Cultures, Penguin Random House India 2022. She is interested in culture, history, and spirituality.

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