Ukraine: “Russophone Ukrainian Nationalists”

In this post (RUS), which has generated over a hundred comments and is now listed as the 4th most popular item on Yandex Blogs, LJ user alek-ya explains what a “Russophone Ukrainian nationalist” is:

Hard to believe that it is possible, but such people do exist. I'm one of them, I may say.


* These are the people who often spend their whole lives speaking Russian, but who think of themselves as Ukrainians and consider Ukraine their Motherland.

* We effortlessly switch from one language to another in conversation: we have friends in all parts of the country.

* When we are abroad and someone asks, “Are you from Russia?” we respond, “No! I'm from Ukraine.

* To another question: “What is your native language?” we reply: “I'm bilingual: Ukrainian and Russian.

* After watching a movie, we try hard to recall what language it was in, Russian or Ukrainian.

* Our keyboards have three [character set options]: Ї [UKR], Ы [RUS], S [ENG].

* We are happy to have our children attend Ukrainian[-language] kindergartens and schools.

* Aggressive attempts by some of our […] officials to impose Ukrainian language frightens us first of all because it may scare people away from Ukrainian.

* For us, [Taras Shevchenko], [Ivan Franko], [Les’ Kurbas] (the list is endless) are [as important] as [Mikhail Lermontov], [Aleksandr Pushkin], [Mikhail Bulgakov].



  • Louis Godena

    Not surprising at all, I’d say. Ukrainian nationalism never struck deep roots among the people; rather, it was a device that sought at various times throughout Ukrainian history to legitimate the rule of one group or another. We can see that today as the current rulers, desperately short of any deep popular support, seek to enflame hatred toward Russia (the invention of man-made famines and “holocaust” are prominent examples). I doubt very much if they will succeed. One cannot obliterate 1500 years of history simply by wishing it away.

    • JNW

      Dear Luis, you completely ignore our history, we never have lived so many years with Russians (moscovites) in the same country.

      Ukrainian Galichyna just entered in Soviet Empire by year 1939, before that it was part of much liberal Austro – Hungarian Kingdom.

      • The problem is that due to years and years of Imperial Russian and Soviet harsh rule and propaganda, many in Ukraine still regards the Ukrainian language as an unprestigious langauge — “the language of ignorant poor peasants, the language of the kulaks and the language of Banderist fascist traitors of Rodina”.

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