The Gates of Europe

The Gates of Europe

January 31, 2016 - This evening at the Ukrainian Museum in New York City were were able to enjoy the intellectual lecture by the esteemed Ukrainian professor Serhii Plokhy. 

John Herst, former US ambassador to Ukraine, "Serhii Plokhy offers a short yet comprehensive history of Ukraine that contextualizes Mr. Putin's current policies as aggression against the wishes of the Ukrainian people, as well as the order established at the end of the Cold War."

Serhii Plokhy is the professor of Ukrainian history at Harvard University and the director of the university's Ukrainian Research Institute. He wrote nice books, including the award-winning The Last Empire, which received the Lionel Gelber Prize, the Pushkin House Russian Book Prize, and the Antonovych Prize. 

In his new book The Gates of Europe Plokhy argues that we must examine Ukraine's past in order to understand its present and future. Today's conflict in Ukraine is only the latest in a long history of battles over Ukraine's territory and its existence as sovereign nation. 

Professor Plokhy examines the history of Ukraine's search for its identity through the lives of the major figures in Ukrainian history: Prince Yaroslav the Wise of Kyiv, whose daughter Anna became queen of France; the Cossacks ruler Ivan Mazepa who was immortalized in the poems of Byron and Pushkin; Nikita Khrushchev and his protege-turned-hemesis Leonid Brezhnev, who called Ukraine their home; and the heroes of the Maidan protests of 2013 and 2014, who embody the current struggle over Ukraine's future. 

Plokhy says that today's crisis in Ukraine is a tragic case of history repeating itself, as Ukraine once again finds itself in the center of a battle of global proportions. The Gates to Europe provides the insight into the origins of the most dangerous international crisis since the end of the Cold War. 

The books includes a good selection of historical maps of Ukraine, the historical timeline, and the list of all historical figures of Ukraine. 

The Gates to Europe is an excellent source for those who want to learn about Ukrainian history. It is especially useful for the younger generation of Ukrainians who are born and are growing up in the U.S. or other foreign countries. Because they have little knowledge of true facts of Ukrainian history. Sadly, American schools do not teach them about Ukraine as separate country. They learn about Ukraine in the context of Russian history.