East European Studies (EES) ‘History’ module instructor Georgiy Kasianov took part in a gripping live discussion on Ukrainian history on April 11 in Hamburg.
Kasianov, who is also the Head of the Department of Contemporary History and Politics and the Institute of History in Ukraine and a member of the Ukrainian National Academy of Sciences, leant his expertise to discuss this important topic. The occasion itself was part of the ‘history@debate’ series, organized by the Körber Foundation and the Gerda Henkel Foundation.
Alongside his counterpart, the Russian historian and Professor at the European University in St. Petersburg, Mr. Kasianov addressed the use and abuse of history, the different narratives put forward in media, text books and in academia circles and of course the dividing lines between the Russian and Ukrainian interpretation of the events after the Euromaidan. Mirroring the lively public debate, the discussion “Russia and Ukraine: A Past Divided” at the Körber Foundation also revealed a number of fault lines between the Russian and Ukrainian historiography. Whereas Mr. Kasianov underscored the recognition of the Ukrainian state as a separate entity, his view was challenged by Mr. Miller, who focused on the variety of actors clashing within Ukrainian territory over the centuries. Other areas of discord during the talk turned out to be the territory-history-irredentism nexus and the concept of the nation-state vs. state-nation. On a more positive note, Mr. Kasianov expressed his belief in the current development of a new Ukrainian civil society and the establishment of civic nation against all the odds and external pressure.
Further information on this fascinating topic can be found at the Körber Foundation Youtube channel or at the speakers’ interview for the Berlin Policy journal.