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Farewell to a "Wonderful Slavonic People": Ethnic Othering and Stereotyping During the Russo-Ukrainian War

Farewell to a "Wonderful Slavonic People": Ethnic Othering and Stereotyping During the Russo-Ukrainian War
1 Devonshire Place, Room 108N, Munk School of Global Affairs
Time: May 12th, 4:00 pm End: May 12th, 6:00 pm
Interest Categories: Slavic Studies (FAS), 2000-
Talk by Mykola Riabchuk, Institute of Political and Nationalities' Studies in Kyiv

The Petro Jacyk Program for the Study of Ukraine and the Centre for European, Russian and Eurasian Studies presents

Farewell to a "Wonderful Slavonic People": Ethnic Othering and Stereotyping During the Russo-Ukrainian War

The ongoing Russo-Ukrainian war, euphemistically called "the Ukraine crisis", has revealed a dramatic gap between the imaginary Ukraine ("a wonderful Slavonic people", in Aleksandr Dugin's terms) created by three centuries of the Russian imperial mythmaking and the real Ukraine that evolved as an alternative and ultimately a bold denial of those efforts. The talk examines Russian stereotypes of Ukrainians as an important element of that mythmaking and deconstructs them as the instruments of imperial manipulation, discursive dominance and, nowadays, unscrupulous propagandistic war. It contends that the popular view of Ukrainians and Russians as "almost the same people" becomes increasingly obsolete since it refers primarily to common soil and blood, culture and history, contrary to Ukrainians' attempts to develop civic identity and establish a value-based rather than ethnic proximity to democratic nations of Europe.

Mykola Riabchuk is a Senior Research Fellow at the Institute of Political and Nationalities' Studies in Kyiv and a Fulbright Visiting Scholar at the George Washington University, USA. He published a number of books and many articles on postcommunist transformations, state-nation building, nationalism and national identity in Ukraine. His last books include "Gleichschaltung. Authoritarian Consolidation in Ukraine, 2010-2012" (2012, in both Ukrainian and English) and "Postcolonial Syndrom" (2011), translated also into Polish (2015) and Hungarian (2016).

This event is free and open to all. Registration is required. For further information, please contact Olga Kesarchuk at 416-946-8497


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