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'Independent Ukraine: Twenty Years On': An International Workshop

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If you have a question about this talk, please contact Dr R E Finnin.

The interdisciplinary workshop Independent Ukraine: Twenty Years On marks the anniversary of Ukraine’s December 1991 referendum, when over 90% of Ukrainian voters declared their support for the creation of an independent, democratic state.

On 8-9 December 2011, a group of noted international scholars will convene at the University of Cambridge to chart Ukraine’s complex trajectory since the dissolution of the Soviet Union. Focussing on the concept and the challenge of independence, these participants will explore the ever-evolving opportunities—and dangers—facing the largest country within Europe.

The workshop seeks to offer a multi-faceted and comparative analysis of today’s Ukraine by orienting discussion broadly on the notion of independence, in all its senses. What did ‘independence’ mean for the Ukrainian electorate in 1991? What does it mean today? In what ways is the country politically, economically, and culturally free to pursue its own interests? Does this independence conduct or inhibit democratic freedom(s)? Does Ukraine’s pivotal geopolitical position—its ‘inbetweeness’—impose by necessity a condition of dependency? How is ‘independence’ invoked in the discursive spheres of Ukrainian politics, economics, and culture? How has it influenced the representation of Ukraine’s past—and future?

The workshop will consist of three panel discussions on issues related to the politics, economics, and culture of Ukraine. To contextualise the conversation and cast the Ukrainian case in greater relief, each panel will be assigned a discussant with expertise in another post-Soviet country.

Hosted by Cambridge Ukrainian Studies, a programme of the Department of Slavonic Studies, in collaboration with the University of Alberta and the University of Western Ontario

This talk is part of the Cambridge Ukrainian Studies Lecture Series series.

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