National Philosophical Traditions as a Source of Memory and Reconciliation: on the ground of 19th century Ukrainophilia discourse
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politics of memory, Ukrainophilian discourse, nation, idea of nation, national identity, modern nation-building, memory, reconciliation

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Volkovskyi, V. (2020). National Philosophical Traditions as a Source of Memory and Reconciliation: on the ground of 19th century Ukrainophilia discourse. Multiversum. Philosophical Almanac, 1(2), 97-110.


The author focuses on the issue of national identity, analyzing the problems of constructing historical memory, related situations of oblivion, memory, reconciliation and enmity, the construction of political and historical subjects. Addressing the Ukrainophilian discourse of the 19th century, the author shows how the ideal subject, its speculative space and time are constructed, and how it contribute to current debates on today's politics, debates over historical memory, national idea, social unity and dialogue, etc. Author starts from the exposition of a popular claim that the discourse based upon the nation and the national provokes social split, and is associated with warfare and Nazism. But appealing to both Ukrainian and Western researchers, to modern Nationalism Studies, working with the concept of political nation, he tries to make a philosophical analysis of the idea of a nation, demonstrating three mutual circulating dialectics of exclusion VS inclusion, I VS not-I (identity VS diversity), memory VS oblivion. So author switches to peculiar philosophical methodological problem of defining what a national philosophy is, analyzing debates within Ukrainian philosophical community. The critique of primordialist discourse of ‘Ukrainian mentality’ and ‘Ukrainian philosophy’ is traced through the idea of ‘philosophy of Ukrainian national idea’ and then comes to the concept of ‘national philosophical tradition’, which is, as it is stated, more positive and less ideological. It allows for author to introduce the term ‘Ukrainophilian discourse’. National philosophical tradition bases upon not the idea ‘I’ (imagined community, sovereign and immutable Subject), but communication of various discourses, where instead of identity grows up the role of diversity, plurality, otherness. It is a perspective of other pattern of nation-building which is building a political body not making walls but bridges.
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