A Short History of Tractors in Ukrainian

Published 12 Jun 2017

Survival, the fact of having managed to live through something, is the theme of the plot of the “A Short History of Tractors in Ukrainian”. The story is speaking of Nadia, a daughter of Pappa, her sister, Vera and Pappa, in some references, Nikolai, who started the whole story when he fell into the trap of deception and fell in love with Valentina as narrated in Nadia’s perspective. Both of Pappa and Valentina were Ukrainian immigrants. It seemed like the first story of survival was when Pappa who was recently widowed chose to marry in an unlikely time of his life and marry a lady who desired a luxurious western-oriented lifestyle. Their relationship was a fifty-year gap, Valentina being junior to Pappa. Pappa was not able to sustain the lifestyle Valentina was accustomed to such.

Pappa’s daughters were on a depression when the terrible thing they had expected happened. This was almost the second story of survival. The next story of survival came in when Valentina became unsatisfied with her spouse, thereby, engaging in affairs with other men. The next story of survival was characterized by the two daughters who found way of saving their father from the addiction to Valentina. (MARIA LEWYCKA)

Personally, the survival instinct, not the usual definition of survival which is the continuation of life or existence but that which refers to the aforementioned definition that is, living through desires… is not good since it may cause another may not be favorable for him/ her. For instance, I wanted to make no competitors at all in the school. I would not let them pass over my capacity in order to get the top spot on school. On the other hand, it is good in such a way that, as I experienced, it improves my performance or intenses my will to hit my goal or finish my job well.

The concept on survival for every man must concern the sake of others for in selfish acts the self is in the risk of no more and no less, trouble. Valentina’s high expectations to her husband never satisfied her. Pappa’s intentions brought him to dismay and later he found what he was looking for from those he less expected. Lastly, the sisters who had a feud reunited — their outlooks in life could have differed from the start but finally ended with one common survival — the need for their father’s presence.(Marina Lewycka)


  • LEWYCKA, MARIA. A Short History of Tractors in Ukrainian Book Reviews Ed. Jessica Mulley, 2006
  • Lewycka, Marina. “A Short History of Tractors in Ukrainian”. 2006.
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