Ukrainian Character, Russian Folly


Vox Populi: Ukrainian Character, Russian Folly

Determination, and good humor, are embedded in everyday Ukrainians.

With the expansion of Russia's war on Ukraine in February 2022, ordinary people in Ukraine and those who became refugees abroad not only volunteered and sacrificed to defend their country, but also opened new virtual fronts as chroniclers of their war experiences by reaching out to broader audiences on social platforms.

Almost immediately, the Ukrainian civilians' optimism and determination to win, their sharp and full-of-positive-energy humor were recognized by the world press as a powerful weapon. Fighting by means of verbal and visual art, everyday Ukrainians are creating new narratives about themselves and forming their decolonized national identity as a renewed, cohesive, democratic society. 

A good sense of humor even in the worst of circumstances is a traditional feature of Ukrainian character. Internet textual representations of this phenomenon as part of Ukrainian moral resistance are numerous. Public networks help create a sense of community, support, and moral strength, articulate attitudes, and formulate new narratives.

The most well-pronounced samples of the wartime Ukrainian folklore are massively shared and reposted on individual, commercial, and institutional webpages. They quickly spread through social platforms, lose their authorship, if any, and enrich the treasury of Ukrainian digital folklore.

For the full article: please go to the following link. Vox Populi: Ukrainian Character, Russian Folly

Lada Kolomiyets, a professor at Taras Shevchenko National University in Kyiv, is the Harris Visiting Professor at Dartmouth in the Department of Russian and the Comparative Literature Program.