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Ukraine after the Euromaidan

Challenges and Hopes


Viktor Stepanenko and Yaroslav Pylynskyi

Ukraine’s protest movement of 2013–14, known as the Euromaidan, and its culmination, the people’s uprising in late 2013–early 2014 became one of the most dramatic world events in recent years. The accession of Crimea to the Russian Federation and military conflict in the Donbas demonstrate that the dramatic dynamics of the country’s ongoing transformation are still far from predictable. This book examines the manifold aspects of Ukraine’s current crisis and its political upheaval. The contributors to the book, Ukrainian experts in a variety of disciplinary fields, explore social, political and cultural reasons and factors behind the country’s transformation in its national and regional dimensions, the impact of Ukraine’s revolution on European and global politics, and also the new challenges of tough reforms with which the country is faced. The contributors share the view that the Euromaidan brought new opportunities for Ukraine’s modern development and the greatest historical chance for the country’s European future since independence in 1991.
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The Beginning of Ukraine and the End of the Post-bipolar World


When dealing with the “post-bipolar” period of international relations (IR) during my classes, from time to time I have been faced with the conceptually correct question from my students: “When will this “post-bipolar” period of IR come to an end?” If we take into consideration this widely accepted concept of the current period of international relations as one whose initiation was basically connected to the break-up of the USSR, which, in turn, inevitably led to the collapse of the bipolar model of international relations in 1991, the “post-bipolar era” could come to an end only with another fundamental global structural shift. It could be caused by several possible global scenarios, but what is certain is that such a shift would have to have to be of great magnitude if it were to destroy the current system of IR in favor of a new one, whatever that might be. Before March 2014 I had not seen any appropriate critical factor to compare with the dramatic events of 1991. Even 9/11, with all its pain and global solidarity, was not sufficient to open the door to a new international epoch; it appeared to be only the tragic cost of the post-bipolar period in times of temporal mono-polarity to meet new global risks of international terrorism on the way to multi-polarity. Today, I may state uniquely: the post-bipolar period of IR – 1991–2014 – came to an end in March 2014. What are the reasons for this conclusion and what could be...

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