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Ukraine names 'Tortured Poets Department' of writers killed in war

Ukraine paid homage to Ukrainian writers who died during the country’s war with Russia by referencing Taylor Swift’s newest album, “The Tortured Poets Department.”

“The Tortured Poets Department (@Ukraine’s Version),” the country posted on its account on the social media platform X Tuesday. 

The post featured the names of Ukrainian writers Victoria Amelina, Maksym Kryvtsov and Volodymyr Vakulenko, all who were killed during Ukraine’s current war with Russia. 

Amelina died due to injuries from a Russian missile attack in eastern Ukraine last summer, PEN America said, according to the Associated Press (AP). She was a novelist, children’s author and even won the UNESCO City of Literature Prize and the European Union Prize for Literature for one of her books.

Kryvtsov, a poet, was killed in action as a soldier in his country’s war against Russia in January, according to the AP. His 2023 book “Poems from the Loophole” mostly featured poetry that focused on the brutal reality as a result of the war.

Vakulenko, a children’s author, was taken from his home by Russian paramilitaries in spring 2022, according to NPR. He was later found in a mass grave near his village by Ukrainian authorities, with DNA tests confirming that it was him. 

Swift’s eleventh studio album, “The Tortured Poets Department” was released last Friday. The album focuses on topics including love, loss and life in the spotlight.

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