Re: language barrier (Ukraine)

Alexander Winogradov (
Sat, 8 May 1999 11:19:08 +0400

>1. What country are you working at at the moment?

>2. What is your native language?
Ukrainian and Russian

>3. How did you first get to know about PCP, through texts (papers,
>books) written in English or in your own language?
I got to know about PCP from my wife when we were students of Kiev
University. She, in her turn, red a review paper on Kelly written in Russian

>4. In your country, what is the approximate percentage of texts
>about PCP originally published in your own language?
There are 4 or 5 journal papers and translated (1987) into Russian "A Manual
for Repertory Grid Technique" by Fay Fransella and Don Bannister

>5. In your country, what is the approximate percentage of texts
>about PCP translated to your own language?
Just one book mentioned above. It was published in 50 000 copies and now is
a rarity. Four years ago I digged second volume of "The PPC" among the books
donated to Kyiv by Alberta College from Canada, so now our faculty has a
half of Kellian heritage.

>6. In your country, are there any journal or newsletter that
>publishes papers on PCP in your own language?

>7. What is the approximate percentage of your own published works
>in English?

>8. When you teach or give lectures about PCP in your country, do
>you chiefly use English or your own language?

>9. Among the conferences you attend, what approximate percentage of them
have English as the only or dominant language?
I had no chance to visit an international conference, so 0%. My wife sent
her paper to IX Conference in Albany (our kindest regards to Professor
Mancuso!). This year she is going to visit Berlin Conference (many thanks to
Professor Joern
Scheer), so for her this percentage will increase.

>10. Do you think that language is a barrier for newcomers to PCP in
>your country?
The main barrier before perestroika was ideological -- Soviet psychology was
declared as superior to any "bourgeois" approach, we have no possibility to
attend conferences, read professional literature, communicate with
colleagues abroad (correspondence was opened and inspected, sometimes just
disappeared). You can imagine under these circumstances the level of
language instruction -- we were trained to speak about Lenin family, last
Communist Party Congress etc. Especially difficult it was to get information
from the province of Soviet Union -- the Ukraine, country with more than 50
millions of inhabitants was treated as outskirt of Empire. I remember how I
tried to order psychological literature in specialized bookstore -- I was
told that "such books Moscow will not allow to order from Ukraine". So, as
you can see, secrecy is not a characteristic feature of capitalist society
After perestroika all these reasons have gone but emerged another one --
financial. I still cannot visit conferences and buy literature, but now
because my salary is $50 per month. That is why I completely agree with
paper of Jim Mancuso devoted to superiority of Internet based conferences.
Again, Internet for me became one of the greatest sources of information on
PCP -- thanks to all of you (especially to Dr Valerie Stewart and John
But language barrier still a very strong obstacle for our psychologists to
learn about PCP. Traditionally low knowledge of English together with
difficult constructivist language caused superficial knowledge of PCP in
former Soviet Union. Practically only technical aspect of PCP gained some
popularity, theory is totally neglected.

>11. Please add any comment you find relevant.
Now I am trying to get grant from Soros Foundation for Fay Fransella's
distance learning course on PCP. If I succeed I will organize my own website
devoted to PCP in Ukrainian language.

Dr. Alexander Winogradov, Associate Professor
Sociology and Psychology Department
Kyiv National University