By Myroslav Shkandrij
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Extra info for Russia and Ukraine: Literature and the Discourse of Empire from Napoleonic to Postcolonial Times
The first was the inclusion of Ukrainians among those who benefitted from conquest and settlement. 94 This was partly because they had suffered for generations from military raiders from the South who had carried off booty and slaves and partly because they hoped to benefit from the imperial conquest of the Black Sea littoral. Although some Ukrainians did indeed benefit from the securing and settlement of new lands, as soon as the Turkish and Tatar threats had been eliminated, hundreds of thousands of free peasants and cossacks were thrown into another form of slavery – serfdom – or suffered from the imposed system of tsarist military colonies.
His celebrated desire to escape from the world’s vanity and avoid a loss of identity can be read as a refusal of the Russian state-nationalism. ”83 In his “Conversation on True Wisdom” he has Wisdom inform Man that she exists in all countries. 84 The writer’s message is that all national forms of life are equally valuable because the eternal meaning of life can be expressed in all of them. Skovoroda’s belief in the secret inner light that provides identity and guides each conscience was an implicit rejection of civilizing missions and hegemonic notions.
Fm Page 35 Wednesday, July 25, 2001 3:04 PM 2 Imperial Borderlands in Russian Literature conquering the orient: aleksandr bestuzhev-marlinsky’s AMMALAT-BEK (1832) After securing the Crimea and the Black Sea coast, the Russian Empire began to conquer the Caucasus. General Aleksei Petrovych Yermolov, a hero of the Napoleonic wars, had been appointed governor and chief administrator of Georgia and the Caucasus in 1816. ” It was a major effort, and it met with fierce resistance. From the early 1830s to 1859, under the leadership of the legendary Shamil, the rebels tied down some two hundred thousand troops, a third of the tsarist army.
Russia and Ukraine: Literature and the Discourse of Empire from Napoleonic to Postcolonial Times by Myroslav Shkandrij