Foundation for the History of Totalitarianism

Learning about the Holodomor

The Holodomor was a terrible famine that took place in Ukraine in 1932-33. Nearly four million people died of starvation in what has been recognised by the U.K. parliament as a genocide.

We believe that knowledge of this crime and tragedy should be more widespread so we have created a ready-made presentation for a school assembly and a lesson plan which could be given after the assembly.

Lapel badges are also available for sale to the general public here.

A short booklet about Holodomor is being designed and printed. It should be available in later October or November.

Holodomor candle-holder design competition: entries are invited to take part in this competition. Please see here for details.

Please feel free to let us know your plans or email us with any queries at

Statue commemorating Holodomor in Kyiv, Ukraine.

Source: Jennifer Boyer

Holodomor featuring Anne Applebaum, author of Red Famine

What does the word literally mean?

The word ‘Holodomor’ means “killing by hunger” and it was coined in the 1980s.

When is the event commemorated each year?

The Holodomor is commemorated every year on the fourth Saturday of November. At this time, there are commemorative services in Ukrainian churches across the UK. Some people also light candles and put them in their front windows at dusk on the fourth Saturday.

What was the name of the film about it which came out in 2020? *

The popular 2020 film ‘Mr Jones’ is based on the British journalist Gareth Jones’ experiences when trying to report on the Holodomor, after visiting the Soviet Union in 1933.

Mr Jones (2019)
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