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Searching for Own Identity. Life by the Eyes of Internally Displaced Persons (After the Field Materials)

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The authors of the publication:
Kalach Olena
Bibliographic description:
Kalach, O. (2022) Searching for Own Identity. Life by the Eyes of Internally Displaced Persons (After the Field Materials). Folk Art and Ethnology, 4 (396), 66–72.


Kalach Olena

a Ph.D. in History, a junior research fellow at the Ukrainian Ethnological Centre Department of the NAS of Ukraine Maksym Rylskyi Institute of Art Studies, Folkloristics and Ethnology


Searching for Own Identity. Life by the Eyes of Internally Displaced Persons (After the Field Materials)



The submitted article is one of the first attempts in Ethnological science to analyze shortly the events of the 2014 and 2022 in the East of our state after the recorded face-to-face interviews with the eye-witnesses according to the beforehand prepared questionnaire by the authoress personally. Peculiar attention is paid to the consideration of changes in the comprehension of the language and cultural interests, civic values and geopolitical priorities by the population of the region in the system of ethnic and national identification, and also the study of the problems and prospects of development of Ukrainian identity in the region.

The respondents’ positions concerning key, in our opinion, issues: causes of the beginning of armed confrontation in the East of Ukraine, the main trends of internal and foreign affairs of our state, world view, language issue, trust to the mass-media, are described.

Geography of the research has undergone significant changes with the beginning of Russian-Ukrainian armed confrontation: at first the Crimea is annexed, then the parts of Donetsk and Luhansk regions are captured. Accordingly, the segment almost always supporting the pro-Russian vector of our state development and speaking in favor of granting a special status of the Russian language has dropped. Another part of the mentioned regions has been released after temporary occupation in 2014. It is just the period of the appearance of the first signs of pro-Ukrainian finding of the citizens, when the changes in world-view, perception and selection of information take place.

The respondents, interrogated by us, have been living for eight years in the changed social and cultural surroundings, then they have endured the second stress on February 24, 2022. As a result, we see a complete coincidence of views of our informants with the data of the latest sociological surveys on the territory, controlled by Ukrainian government.

Ukrainians have changed attitude to the state fundamentally: all regions of Ukraine are united in several days in the desire of victory, confidence in a better future. Victory over the enemy, reconstruction of the country, development of independent free state, unitary in its structure, entering to the EU and NATO, the only Ukrainian state language, ensuring and complying of its functioning on all levels are considered as the undeniable facts.

All mentioned above gives an opportunity to state the necessity of a further thorough study of the considered question in combination with the theoretical work of various scientific disciplines.



Russian-Ukrainian conflict, East of Ukraine, internally displaced persons, identity, world-view, foreign affairs, internal politics, values, language issue.



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