Primary documents

Primary documents are an excellent resource for students to develop critical thinking skills by having them analyze and synthesize information.  The recent publication and translation of Soviet and Ukrainian archives on the Holodomor have made the study of primary documents possible.

Teachers are urged to have students practice the Historian’s Craft, by having them analyze primary documents as if they were the only information available on the topic.  This could be done by analyzing individual documents as a class, or by using a ‘jigsaw’ exercise to extract basic information from all the documents in a concise and quick manner, using a prepared chart for recording the information

The following documents appear in the collection Holodomor of 1932-33 in Ukraine: Documents and Materials, Kyiv-Mohyla Academy, 2008, Kyiv, Ruslan Pyrih, ed.

  1. Resolution “On safekeeping property of state enterprises, collective farms and cooperatives and strengthening public (socialist) property (excerpt)” (excerpt)*
  2. Letter from Stalin to Kaganovich on changing Ukrainian SSR leadership (excerpt)
  3. Resolution of CC AUCP(b) and USSR SNK on grain procurements in Ukraine, the Northern Caucasus and the Western Oblast
  4. Report from Balitsky to the OGPU on the mass exodus of villagers from Ukraine 4