The Russo-Ukrainian War of 1917-1918 and Struggle for Ukrainian Identity in Discourse of Newspaper ‘Sich’: View from Today
The purpose of the research paper is to assess the social role of the first Ukrainian-language newspaper ‘Sich’ (1918) published in Oleksandrivsk (now Zaporizhzhia) in covering and characterizing the events of the Russo-Ukrainian war and the establishment of Ukrainian identity, which were key to public and political life.
The scientific novelty. The role of the newspaper ‘Sich’ in the struggle for Ukrainian identity in Zaporizhzhia region in the conditions of the Russo-Ukrainian War of 1917 – 1918 is analyzed. The content and depth of public opinion represented by the editors and authors of publications regarding the most pressing issues of the time: the causes, nature, prospects of Ukraine’s struggle against Russia, articles of the peace, establishment of borders, and security assurances of Ukraine are uncovered. The chronology of the publication of the newspaper ‘Sich’ is clarified, and the composition of its editorial board is characterized.
Conclusions. Newspaper ‘Sich’ positioned itself as a supra-party democratic journal of Ukrainian organizations and expressed the interests of the vast majority of the indigenous population of Zaporizhzhia region – peasants, workers, and Ukrainian intelligentsia. It played an important role in the information war of Ukraine against Russia, which is evidenced by the considerable number of articles devoted to Ukrainian-Russian relations and the depth of their analysis – from the historical past to the search for prospects in the future. The range of the newspaper’s publications covered various genres, a wide range of issues covered, depth and brightness of the expression of events’ analysis, testifying to the high level of journalistic competence of the members of the editorial board of the newspaper and its publishers, and, at the same time, the high level of national consciousness and patriotism of the environment it was intended for. The newspaper’s publications were noted for their critical assessments, realistic representation of the situation, originality of views on events and processes, vividness of language and images, and artistic techniques used to achieve a creative goal. Journalism of the newspaper ‘Sich’ in the context of Russian aggression against Ukraine was thoroughly Ukrainian, patriotic, and imbued with the ideals of the struggle for Ukrainian identity, state, and national-cultural independence.
It can be concluded that the issues raised by the newspaper ‘Sich’ in 1918 are extremely relevant for modern Ukraine in terms of the next wave of Russian aggression, which turned into a full-scale war in 2022-2023, and testify to the fact that necessary stages of national unity of Ukrainians and the mental archetypes of its Russian enemies have not been comprehended yet.
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