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Ukrainian Independence: 100 Years On

2018 Stasiuk Lecture

One hundred years ago, amid the frost of 1918, the world witnessed the emergence of an independent Ukraine. This winter, the University of Cambridge explores the dynamics and implications of this emergence with prominent public lectures by renowned scholars Mykhailo Minakov (8 February), Mark von Hagen (23 February), and Tamara Hundorova (8 March).

The presentations are part of the Revolution lecture series organised by Cambridge Ukrainian Studies, the Cambridge Committee for Russian and East European Studies (CamCREES), and the Slavonic Studies Section at the University of Cambridge. Free and open to the public, they will be held in the Umney Theatre of Robinson College, Cambridge at 17:30.

‘Ukraine upends conventional understandings of what is too broadly called the “Russian Revolution”, which was neither simply Russian nor one revolution’, explains Dr Rory Finnin, Director of Cambridge Ukrainian Studies and Chair of CamCREES. ‘The fall of the Russian Empire unleashed a series of revolutions, which were not only about land and economic justice, but also about national self-determination and the abuses of colonialism. In 1918 they laid the ground for a progressive, internationally-recognised, independent Ukrainian state project — which, while short-lived, defied the geopolitical odds.

"In 1918 they laid the ground for a progressive, internationally-recognised, independent Ukrainian state project — which, while short-lived, defied the geopolitical odds." Dr Rory Finnin

‘What distinguishes this lecture series’, notes Finnin, ‘is our acknowledgement of the complexity of these events and our incorporation of diverse, interdisciplinary perspectives from scholars of both Ukraine and Russia.’

The Revolution series continues on Thursday, 8 February with a lecture by Professor Mikhail Minakov (Kyiv-Mohyla Academy) on the ‘Cycles of Revolution in Ukraine’. It will be followed on Friday, 23 February by the Sixteenth Annual Stasiuk Lecture in Contemporary Ukrainian Studies, which will be delivered by Professor Mark von Hagen (Arizona State University) on ‘Brest-Litovsk and the Making of Modern Ukraine and Russia’. Tickets to von Hagen’s Stasiuk Lecture are free with registration at The Revolution series concludes on 8 March with a lecture by Professor Tamara Hundorova (Ukrainian Academy of Sciences) on ‘Revolution and Literature’.

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