"Let books be your dining table, / And you shall be full of delights. / Let them be your
And you shall sleep restful nights" (St. Ephraim the Syrian).

Monday, October 15, 2018

War, Memory, and Myth-Making in Russia, Ukraine, and Belarus

For many years now the questions of memory and the healing of its traumas have preoccupied me, especially in Catholic-Orthodox relations, but also more generally across cultures. In our forthcoming book on remembering the Ps-Sobor of Lviv of 1946, I briefly discuss some of the challenges posed by competing memories and competing historiographies of the post-World War II world in Ukraine and Russia. A recent and substantial collection carries this discussion further and broadens it out to include a third country: War and Memory in Russia, Ukraine and Belarus, eds. Julie Fedor et al (Palgrave Macmillan, 2017), ‎506pp.

About this book the publisher tells us this:
This edited collection contributes to the current vivid multidisciplinary debate on East European memory politics and the post-communist instrumentalization and re-mythologization of World War II memories. The book focuses on the three Slavic countries of post-Soviet Eastern Europe – Russia, Ukraine and Belarus – the epicentre of Soviet war suffering, and the heartland of the Soviet war myth. The collection gives insight into the persistence of the Soviet commemorative culture and the myth of the Great Patriotic War in the post-Soviet space. It also demonstrates that for geopolitical, cultural, and historical reasons the political uses of World War II differ significantly across Ukraine, Russia and Belarus, with important ramifications for future developments in the region and beyond.

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