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Influence of Scientific Discourses on Processes of National Consciousness Formation in Ukraine in the Mid- to Late XIXth to Early XXth Century

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The authors of the publication:
Vermenych Yaroslava
Bibliographic description:
VERMENYCH, Ya. (2020) Influence of Scientific Discourses on Processes of National Consciousness Formation in Ukraine in the Mid- to Late XIXth to Early XXth Century. Folk Art and Ethnology, 4 (386), 26–42.


Vermenych Yaroslava

a PhD hab, full professor, a chief of Regional History of Ukraine Department of the Institute of History of Ukraine at the National Academy of Sciences of Ukraine



Influence of Scientific Discourses on Processes of National Consciousness Formation in Ukraine in the Mid- to Late XIXth to Early XXth Century



The article analyses trends of searching for models of nation-building and state-building in the Ukrainian society at the turn of the XIXth and XXth centuries, as well as traces preconditions of creating the XIXth-century Ukrainian national projects in the intellectual environment. An emphasis is placed on clarifying the influence of the phenomena of extremity, fractality and hybrid identity on the development of socio-political attitudes, as well as over the processes of the Ukrainians’ national consciousness formation. The main milestones in the development of nation-building processes of the second half of the XIXth to early XXth centuries are determined. On the ground of Miroslav Hrochʼs scheme given is an auctorial model of periodization of scientific researches and discourses on problems of national identity. It is proven that discourses on the themes of nation-building and state-building deserve to be the object of scientific analysis. Whether they are remote in time or modern, aimed at affirming a national idea or, conversely, at denying its inherent creative potential, they have already become part of the subject field of intellectual history and as such are suitable for systematic research in the courses of historical-genetic, cultural and other approaches. It was in the XIXth century that an intensive process of the Ukrainian nation’s representation began, which lasts to this day. It is useful to trace what stimulated and inhibited it over a hundred years ago and what destructive factors hinder the formation of national identities in the face of heightened turbulence in the modern world. In this regard, the problem of the axiological value of identities that can appear not due to but contrary to adverse life circumstances comes into practice.

The conclusions outline the relationship between scientific and extra-scientific components in the process of nation-building, submit both ways to find answers to the challenges of the time, and means of minimizing the imperial pressure through the introduction into the public consciousness of the ideas of national liberation. Today, these problems are doubly relevant due to the direct necessity to clarify the possibilities and effectiveness of domestic resistance to the reincarnation of imperial ideas, which occurs in the Russian historiography. They are also topical in connection with the search for an answer to the question crucial to the Ukrainian history: why significant consolidation endeavours of intellectuals ultimately lead to deepening the line of demarcation, rather than to its smoothing. The Ukrainian projects of the mid- to late XIXth to early XXth centuries – too different, sometimes inherently contradictory and inconsistent – nevertheless give an idea of the power of resistance to the imperial pressure, which has eventually become a means of social mobilization and promoted the development of national liberation movement from a cultural to a political phase. Their distinct consolidation context with the representation of the idea of nation popular in the XIXth century is an evidence of the intellectual maturity of local elites, as well as their awareness of a potential for solidarity.



national consciousness, national identity, socio-political attitudes, social values, national projects, scientific discourses.



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