Labour, exhaustion, and success: company towns of the Donbas

Labour, exhaustion, and success: company towns of the Donbas

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Edited by Volodymyr Kulikov and Iryna Sklokina

The book is an attempt to represent the history of Donbas of the XIX-XXth centuries through the lens of life of local citizens and founders of industrial company towns. It was hard work of workers, managers, and businessmen that led to success. However, success also comes at a price – it is the exhaustion of human and natural resources. The book tells about who the residents of the company towns were, what were their daily routines, work, and leisure time; how the relations were developing between people and different social groups. Special focus is on natural, built and social landscapes of Donbas, on how they changed in the process of industrialization and urbanization, and also how the attitudes to them were changing, along with the cultural insights, both from a perspective of residents themselves, the travelers, and newcomers. An important material for analysis of this change were photographic sources. In the book, they serve not only as illustrations but also as the food for thought about strategies of visual representation of the 19th-21st century industrial city.

Research editing: Volodymyr Kulikov, Iryna Sklokina

Authors: Mykhaylo Ilchenko, Kseniya Kuzina, Volodymyr Kulikov. Tetiana Portnova, Iryna Sklokina, Marta Studenna-Skrukva, Olena Stiazhkina

Literary editing: Viktoriia Nemashkalo

Proofreading: Maryna Kurushyna

Design and layout: Iryna Tsimerman

Project coordinators: Iryna Sklokina

Language: Ukrainian


  • Introduction. Industrial Company Towns: Characteristics, History, Future Prospects (Volodymyr Kulikov, Iryna Sklokina)
  • Realm of Coal and Iron. The role of Industrialization in the Process of Social Change in Donbas (Marta Studenna-Skrukva)
  • Donbas Landscapes (Tetiana Portnova)
  • Urban Development and Urban Planning Experiments (Mykhaylo Ilchenko)
  • People of the Company: Paradoxical Unions and Divides (Volodymyr Kulikov, Iryna Sklokina)
  • After Work (Olena Stiazhkina, Iryna Sklokina)
  • The Price of Success (Kseniya Kuzina, Volodymyr Kulikov, Iryna Sklokina)
  • Photo Images of Donbas: Creating, Social Life, Archiving (Iryna Sklokina)

Edited by Volodymyr Kulikov and Iryna Sklokina. This project was developed in partnership with the Center for Urban History of East Central Europe (Lviv) and the Kowalski Program of the Canadian Institute of Ukrainian Studies (Kharkiv).