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Making Sense of Suffering : Holocaust and Holodomor in Ukrainian Historical Culture

Dietsch, Johan LU (2006)
Abstract (Swedish)
Popular Abstract in Swedish

Denna studie behandlar hur Ukraina har inkorporerat och brukat förintelsen och den ukrainska hungersnöden 1932-1933, den så kallade terrorhungersnöden, i den nya nationella historien och historiekulturen. Undersökningen tar sin utgångspunkt i det ökade intresset för förintelsen under senare år. Olika institutioner och aktörer har framfört utrotningen av Europas judar under andra världskriget som en lärdom i nödvändigheten av demokrati och tolerans. Historia, eller snarare tolkningar av det förflutna, närmas i studien på ett sätt främmande för traditionell historiografi. Historia närmas som en mänskligt skapad produkt för att tillfredsställa specifika behov och som fyller specifika funktioner. På... (More)
Popular Abstract in Swedish

Denna studie behandlar hur Ukraina har inkorporerat och brukat förintelsen och den ukrainska hungersnöden 1932-1933, den så kallade terrorhungersnöden, i den nya nationella historien och historiekulturen. Undersökningen tar sin utgångspunkt i det ökade intresset för förintelsen under senare år. Olika institutioner och aktörer har framfört utrotningen av Europas judar under andra världskriget som en lärdom i nödvändigheten av demokrati och tolerans. Historia, eller snarare tolkningar av det förflutna, närmas i studien på ett sätt främmande för traditionell historiografi. Historia närmas som en mänskligt skapad produkt för att tillfredsställa specifika behov och som fyller specifika funktioner. På detta sätt blir historia ett uttryck för de olika sätt människor försöker bringa ordning i och förstå det förflutna. En sådan förståelse av historia leder undersökningen in på de historieläroböcker som förskrivits av den Ukrainska staten sedan landet blev självständigt 1991. Dessa böcker är inte bara kraftfulla förmedlare av historiska tolkningar utan sprids också över hela Ukraina, något som gör dem till centrala produkter i spridandet av den nya nationella historien. Den reviderade nationella historieskrivningen har dock inte enbart varit ett nationellt företag. Den ukrainska diasporan i Nordamerika har på olika sätt infuerat historiska tolkningar i dagens Ukraine. På samma sätt har olika internationella organisationer och institutioner, så som Europarådet, påverkat historieundervisningen i skolan.



Införandet av förintelsen i skolans historieundervisning och den ukrainska historiekulturen har onekligen skett i kamp med införandet av terrorhungersnöden. Förstådd som ett folkmord förövat av Sovjetunionen under Stalin mot Ukrainare har denna svältkatastrof passats in på ett oproblematiskt sätt i den större Ukrainska nationella historien, som har konceptualiserats somdet Ukrainska folkets tragisk historia. Medan svältkatastrofen passar in och underbygger en sådan tragisk historia utmanar förintelsen de enkla svart-vita steretyperna genom att ukrainare inte var bland majoriteten av offer utan kunde istället delvis återfinns på förrövarsidan. I syfte att hantera denna svåra situation har ukrainska historieläroböcker förbassat förintelsens historia till Europa, närmare bestämt till Tyskland och Polen. Om mördandet av judar i Ukraina har historiläroböckerna förblivit stumma, för att istället understryka folkmordet på ukrainare ett årtionde tidigare. (Less)
Abstract
This study deals with the problem of how Ukraine has incorporated and made use of the Holocaust and the 1932?1933 famine (Holodomor) in its new national history and historical culture. The investigation departs from the increased interest in and attention devoted to the Holocaust in recent years. Various institutions and actors have brought the mass murder of Europe's Jews forward as an important lesson in the need for democracy and tolerance. History, or rather historical interpretations, is not approached in a traditional historiographical way, but rather as products or as commodities created by humans to satisfy certain needs and to fullfill certain functions. Understood in this way history becomes an enterprise whereby the disparate... (More)
This study deals with the problem of how Ukraine has incorporated and made use of the Holocaust and the 1932?1933 famine (Holodomor) in its new national history and historical culture. The investigation departs from the increased interest in and attention devoted to the Holocaust in recent years. Various institutions and actors have brought the mass murder of Europe's Jews forward as an important lesson in the need for democracy and tolerance. History, or rather historical interpretations, is not approached in a traditional historiographical way, but rather as products or as commodities created by humans to satisfy certain needs and to fullfill certain functions. Understood in this way history becomes an enterprise whereby the disparate past is made to make sense. This underlying assumption directs the investigation to history textbooks issued by the Ukrainian state after 1991, as they are both powerful conveyers of history and widespread within the Ukrainian borders. These books contain the new national history thought to promote the fostering of Ukrainian citizens who take pride in their history. However, rewriting national history has not been an altogether national enterprise. The Ukrainian diaspora in North America has, in various ways, influenced interpretations of history in present-day Ukraine. Similarily, international organisations and institutions such as the Council of Europe have conducted seminars on the teaching of history in schools, on the quility of textbooks and on the need to teach Holocaust studies in secondary school history courses.



Introducing the Holocaust into the history courses and Ukrainian historical culture in general has competed with the introduction of the Holdomor. Understood as a genocide perpetrated by the Soviet Union under Stalin, directed against Ukrainians, the 1932?1933 famine neatly fits into the general outline of Ukrainian national history as the tragic history of Ukrainians. In contrast, the Holocaust challenges the same tragic history as Ukrainians where not among the majority of victims and could be found on the perpetrating side. To cope with these difficualties Ukrainian history textbooks relegates the Jewish tragedy during the war to areas outside present-day Ukraine. German antisemitism and Polish extermination camps become sumbolic in the representation of the Holocaust. Of the murder of Jews in Ukraine the books are silent, choosing to highlight the genocide directed against Ukrainians instead. (Less)
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author
supervisor
opponent
  • Prof. Kolstø, Pål, Institutt for litteratur, områdestudier og europeiske språk (ILOS), Universitetet i Oslo
organization
publishing date
type
Thesis
publication status
published
subject
keywords
Contemporary history (since 1914), Historia, History, Europeanisation, history education, Holodomor, 1932?1933 famine, Holocaust, national identity, diaspora, uses of history, historical culture, historical consciousness, Ukraine, post-Soviet, Nutidshistoria (från 1914), Political history, Politisk historia
pages
280 pages
publisher
Department of History, Lund university
defense location
Historiska institutionen, Sal 3 Magle Stora Kyrkogata 12 A Lund
defense date
2006-04-29 10:15
language
English
LU publication?
yes
id
3dedbdcf-fca9-4955-88a8-8bcaadb65a7b (old id 25786)
date added to LUP
2007-06-05 13:02:54
date last changed
2016-09-19 08:45:02
@misc{3dedbdcf-fca9-4955-88a8-8bcaadb65a7b,
  abstract     = {This study deals with the problem of how Ukraine has incorporated and made use of the Holocaust and the 1932?1933 famine (Holodomor) in its new national history and historical culture. The investigation departs from the increased interest in and attention devoted to the Holocaust in recent years. Various institutions and actors have brought the mass murder of Europe's Jews forward as an important lesson in the need for democracy and tolerance. History, or rather historical interpretations, is not approached in a traditional historiographical way, but rather as products or as commodities created by humans to satisfy certain needs and to fullfill certain functions. Understood in this way history becomes an enterprise whereby the disparate past is made to make sense. This underlying assumption directs the investigation to history textbooks issued by the Ukrainian state after 1991, as they are both powerful conveyers of history and widespread within the Ukrainian borders. These books contain the new national history thought to promote the fostering of Ukrainian citizens who take pride in their history. However, rewriting national history has not been an altogether national enterprise. The Ukrainian diaspora in North America has, in various ways, influenced interpretations of history in present-day Ukraine. Similarily, international organisations and institutions such as the Council of Europe have conducted seminars on the teaching of history in schools, on the quility of textbooks and on the need to teach Holocaust studies in secondary school history courses.<br/><br>
<br/><br>
Introducing the Holocaust into the history courses and Ukrainian historical culture in general has competed with the introduction of the Holdomor. Understood as a genocide perpetrated by the Soviet Union under Stalin, directed against Ukrainians, the 1932?1933 famine neatly fits into the general outline of Ukrainian national history as the tragic history of Ukrainians. In contrast, the Holocaust challenges the same tragic history as Ukrainians where not among the majority of victims and could be found on the perpetrating side. To cope with these difficualties Ukrainian history textbooks relegates the Jewish tragedy during the war to areas outside present-day Ukraine. German antisemitism and Polish extermination camps become sumbolic in the representation of the Holocaust. Of the murder of Jews in Ukraine the books are silent, choosing to highlight the genocide directed against Ukrainians instead.},
  author       = {Dietsch, Johan},
  keyword      = {Contemporary history (since 1914),Historia,History,Europeanisation,history education,Holodomor,1932?1933 famine,Holocaust,national identity,diaspora,uses of history,historical culture,historical consciousness,Ukraine,post-Soviet,Nutidshistoria (från 1914),Political history,Politisk historia},
  language     = {eng},
  pages        = {280},
  publisher    = {ARRAY(0xb5b6870)},
  title        = {Making Sense of Suffering : Holocaust and Holodomor in Ukrainian Historical Culture},
  year         = {2006},
}