Insight into Ukraine’s current reality

Insight into Ukraine’s current reality

Welcome to the RUCARR seminar with Ukrainian students  Mariia Vashchenko and Zoriana Tsiupak.
When: February 8, 15.00-16.30.
Where: Zoom link will be available here

Two Ukrainian students, staying in Malmö on a Swedish Institute scholarship, are going to hold a presentation about the situation in Ukraine in the context of the full scale russian invasion. They want to highlight some aspects of the current reality based on their personal experience and some statistical data found on the Internet. In their presentation they want to cover some challenges for Ukrainian citizens during the war time, including gender equality and social inclusion among other things. Moreover, the role of Lviv as a transit center of humanitarian aid and a refugees’ destination will be discussed. 

RUCARR Lunch Seminar January 24th: Understandings of democracy and “good citizenship” in Ukraine: utopia for the people, participation in politics not required

Understandings of democracy and “good citizenship” in Ukraine: utopia for the people, participation in politics not required by Dr. Joanna Szostek, Lecturer in Political Communication, University of Glasgow 

When: January 24th, 12:15-14:00 CET time

Where: Zoom-link: https://mau-se.zoom.us/j/63683894763

Description: This research presentation will explore how people in diverse peripheral regions of Ukraine understood democracy, their role as citizens in a democracy, and the meaning of “good citizenship” in 2021, the year before Russia’s full-scale invasion. Using thematic analysis of focus group discussions, the research demonstrates gaps and inconsistencies in the understandings of democracy articulated by participants. A utopian understanding of democracy was common, in which authorities are expected to “listen to the people” and keep them satisfied, but the need for government to manage conflicting interests is not recognized. Understandings of good citizenship are inclusive and pro-social, but mostly detached from institutional politics. Similarity was observed across regions in how democracy is understood in the abstract. However, the meaning ascribed to democracy often varied when discussion moved from the abstract to particular country examples – a finding relevant beyond the Ukrainian case, for survey-based research on public understandings of democracy more generally.

 

 

Seminar on Georgia and the Russian invasion of Ukraine with Prof. Alexandre Kukhianidze, Dec. 13

Georgia: history and memory in the conditions of the Russian invasion of Ukraine

Video from the seminar available here: https://youtu.be/I0vvrtdzSg4

 

RUCARR online seminar with visiting researcher Alexandre Kukhianidze, Professor of Political Science, Faculty of Social and Political Sciences,  Ivane Javakhishvili Tbilisi State University University (Georgia).

When: December 13, 15.15-17.00 CET (6.15-8.00 pm Tbilisi)
Where: Zoom link https://mau-se.zoom.us/s/62874227691

Abstract

The online seminar discusses how Russia’s attack on Ukraine in the early morning of February 24, 2022, led not only to a rethinking of international security and stability, of Russia’s entire policy towards its immediate neighbors, but also to international assessments of Russia’s invasion of Georgia in 2008. The war led to a complication in relations between the ruling “Georgian Dream” party and the Ukrainian leadership, influenced the relationship of the Georgian leadership with the political opposition and leading non-governmental organizations, as well as the relationship of the ruling party to the European Union and the United States. Against the backdrop of the war in Ukraine, the Georgian political opposition is increasingly accusing the political leadership of Georgia of pro-Russian orientation, rejection of European and Euro-Atlantic integration and insufficient assistance to Ukraine, attacks by individual representatives of the “Georgian Dream” on the ambassadors of the European Union, the United States and the leadership of Ukraine. Meanwhile, the scale of mass rallies held in Georgia in support of Ukraine and aimed at criticizing the Georgian leadership has sharply decreased by the autumn of 2022, which has an impact on the stability of the latter. Based on personal observations and analysis of the entire post-Soviet period in Georgia, the speaker explains the reasons for the behavior of the Georgian leadership and the public against the backdrop of Russia’s war in Ukraine.

 

 

Seminar Nov 29: Attitudes to Putin-Era Patriotism Amongst Russia’s ‘In Between’ Generation

Attitudes to Putin-Era Patriotism Amongst Russia’s ‘In Between’ Generation, Seminar with Dr. Jussi Lassila, Finnish Institute of International Affairs

When? November 29th, 15:15.17:00

Where? On Zoom: https://mau-se.zoom.us/j/65931690478

Putin-era patriotism has become mandatory across different social groups and communities in terms of their relationship to the state. In particular, there has been a growing polarization between the construction of patriotic policies and attitudes towards these policies by their targets. As a rule, actors representing Soviet-era generations are increasingly producing patriotism derived from Soviet ideals for generations who lack personal experience of the Soviet Union as well as the 1990s that followed its collapse. At the same time, loyalty building to the authoritarian state, aimed at by patriotic education, is working rather poorly among the youngest Russians.

But what is known about Russians between these poles, between educators and those being educated? What is their attitude towards patriotism and the patriotic education of the Putin era? Russians born in the early 1980s form an important intermediate cohort between the older Soviet-era and younger ‘internet’ generations who came of age within different frameworks of patriotic socialisation. They started school in the last years of the USSR, finished their main schooling before the Putin-era patriotic education programmes began but whose own children are now undergoing them.

In this respect, this cohort has a personal connection to all three dimensions of the Putin-era patriotic policies: 1) the patriotic education of the Soviet era, 2) the “unpatriotic” 1990s, and 3) the patriotic education of the Putin era by living in the most socio-economically active phase under Putin and being parents to children who are central targets of patriotic education. Attitudes of this cohort provide us preliminary information about prerequisites for internalizing Putin-era patriotism by active adults of the 2010s and early 2020s. For this cohort the effect of the Soviet-era patriotism could be seen in their recognition of the virtues of official patriotism, but this identification was by no means political. This implies that the political banality of patriotism in general, something that anyone can share, underlines the overall limits of using patriotism for political purposes.

The presentation is based on a case study published this year (ʻAttitudes to Putin-Era Patriotism Amongst Russia’s ‘In Between’ Generationʼ, Jussi Lassila & Anna Sanina, Europe-Asia Studies, https://doi.org/10.1080/09668136.2022.2088702), which also provides a background for the current situation influenced by Putinʼs invasion of Ukraine.

 

Seminar on The Nagorno-Karabakh Conflict in the Soviet and Russian Press with Dr. Artyom Tonoyan, November 1

Seminar on The Nagorno-Karabakh Conflict in the Soviet and Russian Press with Dr. Artyom Tonoyan, November 1st 

When: November 1st, 15:15-17:00

Where?: Zoom-link: https://mau-se.zoom.us/j/63095278918

Black Garden Aflame: The Nagorno-Karabakh Conflict in the Soviet and Russian Press

For a few brief weeks in fall 2020, Western media buzzed with news of the intense war in Nagorno-Karabakh (Artsakh). The conflict had been “frozen” since 1994, so the new outbreak of violence caught many journalists unawares.

By contrast, this conflict has been a mainstay in the Soviet, then Russian press. The sheer volume of published material—including eyewitness accounts, interviews with notable figures, and incisive, well-researched analyses—far exceeds anything produced by Western media.

Moscow’s knowledge of the region is as strong as it is permanent, dictated mainly by geopolitical interests. The collection of articles in the book—carefully translated, edited, and culled from a vast repository of Russian-language press curated by Artyom Tonoyan—presents in book form for the first time in English some of the most important material that has appeared from 1988 to the present.

BIO
A native of Gyumri, Armenia, Dr. Artyom Tonoyan is a sociologist and Visiting Professor of Global Studies at Hamline University, in St. Paul, Minnesota. His research interests include sociology of religion, religion and politics in the South Caucasus, and religion and nationalism in post-Soviet Russia. His articles have appeared in Demokratizatsiva: The Journal of Post-Soviet Democratization, Society, and Modern Greek Studies Yearbook, among others. He has been a frequent guest on the BBC, Deutsche Welle, France 24, and other outlets. He is currently working on a book charting the social,historical, and religious backgrounds of the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict. He received his Ph.D. from Baylor University.

 

 

Seminar on China’s policy towards the countries of South Caucasus with Dr. David Aptsiauri, Nov 15

Specifics of China’s policy towards the countries of South Caucasus during continuing global crisis

Welcome to the RUCARR seminar on November 15 with Dr. David Aptsiauri, who has served many years as Georgia’s Ambassador to China, Mongolia and the Socialist Republic of Vietnam.

Where: Zoom seminar,  Link: https://mau-se.zoom.us/s/64464981144

When: 1.15–3.00 pm Malmö CET (04.15–6.00 pm Tbilisi), November 15

Abstract

The presentation will be based on consideration of the current trends in development of cooperation between China and countries of South Caucasus, its influence on the region’s economic growth and security environment, particularly in the context of continuing pandemic crisis and war in Ukraine. The cooperation of the countries of South Caucasus in the frame of Chinese ,“Belt and Road Initiative” presents an important part of the analysis. The role of global and regional players in politics and economics of South Caucasus should enrich the knowledge of the updated situation in the region.

Bio

Ambassador David Aptsiauri, Dr. in International Economics, currently takes a position of General Director of the Chamber of Commerce and Industry of Georgia, earlier worked as Senior Fellow at the Levan Mikeladze Training and Research Diplomatic Institute of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Georgia. He is a career diplomat with almost 30 years of professional experience in diplomacy, that started in the United States in early 90s, where he was sent among the first group of Georgian diplomats to the newly established Embassy of Georgia to the United States and Permanent Mission to the United Nations in New York. During 2000-2004, Dr. Aptsiauri served as Deputy Minister, and later as First Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs of Georgia. In 2014-2018, he served as Ambassador of Georgia to the People`s Republic of China, Mongolia and the Socialist Republic of Vietnam. Prior to that, he was appointed as Ambassador of Georgia to the Republics of Lithuania, Latvia and Estonia (2004-2007), Republic of Lithuania (2007-2008). 

In parallel with his diplomatic background Ambassador D. Aptsiauri has been actively involved in academic and research activities in the field of international economic relations as Visiting Professor and Senior Scholar in Georgia and abroad, he is the author of a wide range of publications on international economic relations. Currently he is a Senior Researcher at Tbilisi State University, runs the Center of the Black Sea Regional Development problems at the Georgian Technical University, is appointed as Member of the Board of the Georgian analythic Center “Geocase” and, as visiting professor, delivers lectures at Tbilisi State University, Beijing University of International Business and Economics (UIBE) and Astana International University (AIU), Kazakhstan. In 1994-2000, Ambassador Aptsiauri conducted academic and research activities in the United States, including lecturing and key presentations at Columbia University, University of Florida, the New York Bar Association. During 2004-2013 Dr. Aptsiauri also delivered lectures and ran training courses in educational and research organizations of Azerbaijan, Kazakhstan, Turkey, Sweden, Belgium, Greece, China, Baltic and other countries. In 2019 he was invited by the Azerbaijani Diplomatic Academy, (ADA-University) to conduct training program for senior diplomatic personnel on economic diplomacy. In addition, he has participated in numerous high level workshops, seminars and training courses / including the statements before Special Sessions of the United Nations General Assembly/ in Europe, the United States of America, Asia, Latin America, covering the crucial topics of international security and economic cooperation, conflict resolution and sustainable development, problems of children, regional and interregional collaboration, in particular the East-West dimension.

Dr M Tyshcenko promoted to Honorary doctor at the Faculty of Culture and Society

Our warm congratulations to Dr. Mariia Tyshchenko (Kyiv National Economic University and NGO “PORUCH”), promoted today to Honorary Doctor of the Faculty of Culture and Society, Malmö University. From the motivation for her appointment: “… in every way an exemplary person whose work and commitment impresses, inspires and gives hope for a better, more just and more peaceful world”Promotor Prof Derek S. Hutcheson.
 

Seminar with Gregg Bucken-Knapp on the new book – Messages from Ukraine – Oct 25

Welcome to the joint GP, MIM and RUCARR seminar, where Prof. Gregg Bucken-Knapp, School of Public Administration at the University of Gothenburg, presents his new book “Messages from Ukraine”, co-authored with comic artist, illustrator, and graphic designer Joonas Sildre

When:  October 25, 3.15–5.00 CET 
Where: Zoom link https://mau-se.zoom.us/s/66628861480 

 About the book from the Toronto University Press: 

On February 24, 2022, Russia launched a full-scale invasion of Ukraine that dominated headlines around the world. Millions of Ukrainians would flee the country, and a third of the population would be displaced. In the days following the invasion, Swedish migration expert Gregg Bucken-Knapp sent text messages to his Ukrainian colleagues, offering support and assistance. These were their responses.  

 In a series of graphic vignettes, Messages from Ukraine takes the words of Ukrainian migration professionals and transforms them into snapshots of how war affects the lives of everyday people: those who are forced to flee home and seek safety elsewhere, those who choose to stay and volunteer or fight, those who witness events unfolding from afar, and those who find themselves trapped in cities under siege. Messages from Ukraine captures a moment in time to tell a timeless story about war, displacement, determination, and resilience. 

Russia’s War in Ukraine: Women, Security, Resilience: October 18th, 15:15-17:00 (hybrid)

Seminar with Svitlana Babenko, Project researcher at GPS and MIM and Mariia Tyschenko, Honorary Doctor of Malmö University

When: October 18th, 15:15-17:00

Where? Seminar room, 9th floor or on Zoom

Zoom-link: https://mau-se.zoom.us/j/64089273870

Description

Our presentation is based on the analysis of this year’s report on the implementation of UN Resolution 1325 “Women, Peace, Security” in Ukraine, and sociological research on the discussed issues under the full-scale Russian war in Ukraine.

russia’s war in Ukraine has been disproportionately affecting women from the beginning of the war in 2014. According to official statistics, the number of women predominates among internally displaced persons (IDPs), unemployed IDPs, victims of gender-based violence (GBV), and other vulnerable groups. Over 14,5 million people in Ukraine have been forced to leave their homes due to the russian full-scale invasion in 2022, among them, 7,5 million fleeing to Europe, and above 7 million are internally displaced in Ukraine, as well as an uncounted number of people are forcibly displaced to russia from temporary occupied Ukrainian territories. About 70% of the refugees are women. Displaced women and girls in Ukraine are three times more likely to experience GBV than those who are not displaced. Women are also struggling to get paid jobs. In 2019 among IDPs who have been actively seeking employment in Ukraine, 79% are women.

Moreover, due to existing discrimination, double burden, and gender stereotypes; women account for 90% of respondents who are engaged in housework, childcare, and other household activities. Thus, women not only have a greater dependence on social benefits but also fewer opportunities to participate in social and political life. Affected by russia’s war, women need more help and support on an individual level: security and displacement issues, humanitarian problems, psychological support, etc. But also, actions are required to deal with complex collective issues, such as an increase of GBV, sexual trafficking and exploitation, lack of access to life-saving sexual and reproductive healthcare, and fostering of traditional roles, and gender stereotypes.

The presentation is followed up with a roundtable discussion on the following questions:

1. How to localize the goals of UN Resolution 1325 to the regional and community level during the emergency phase of russia’s war in Ukraine?

2. How to support Ukrainian women under multiple challenges of war and refugeeing?

3. What can the University, RUCARR, Russian Studies and the academic community do for informational support of Ukraine to overcome widespread russian propaganda and myth-makingy?

Looking forward to your participation!

Svitlana Babenko PhD in Sociology, Docent, project researcher at GPS and MIM, Malmö University;  Head of MA Program Gender Studies with double degree with Lund University at Faculty of Sociology, Taras Shevchenko National University of Kyiv, Ukraine 

Mariia Tyschenko PhD in Political Science, Docent, Honorary Doctor of Malmö University, NGO “Poruch”, Ukraine  

Svitlana Babenko | Malmö universitetFörkämpe för mänskliga rättigheter blir hedersdoktor | Malmö universitet

Roundtable on Russia-China relations – Oct 4

Welcome to join us for the Roundtable on Russia-China relations – a joint event organized by RUCARR, Malmö University, Centre for East and South-East Asian Studies, Lund University and the Swedish Society for the Study of Russia, Central and Eastern Europe and Central Asia.

Abstract

Russia’s all-out war against Ukraine and its escalation on February 24, 2022, was seen by many observers as an attack on the security architecture that was established in Europe after the end of the Cold War. During the first weeks and months after the invasion, speculations abounded that China was the only actor that could prompt Putin’s Russia into a de-escalation of the war. China was attributed a key role in the development of the war. If it sided with Russia in supplying arms and helping it to evade the effects of the international sanctions, this could lead to a decisive Russian victory and a change in the global correlation of forces. On the other hand, if it leaned towards the side of Ukraine, the United States and the political West in condemning the war, it would substantially weaken Russia’s hand. More than six months after the Russian invasion, China still seems to maintain a wait-and-see position, and the world is still waiting to see what position it will eventually take regarding the war.

Against this background, this roundtable discusses the history, dynamics and current developments of relations between China and Russia, focusing on both political leaders and ordinary citizens, and from the perspectives of historians, anthropologists, and political scientists.

Participants

Dr. Alexander Dukalskis, School of Politics and International Relations, University College Dublin, more info

Professor Bo Petersson, Dept. of Global Political Studies, RUCARR, Malmö University, more info

Dr. Ed Pulford, Modern Languages and Cultures, University of Manchester, more info

Professor Marina Svensson, Centre for East and South-East Asian Studies, Lund University (moderator), more info