Olena Styazhkina


Professor of History at Mariupol State University and Donetsk National University, Vinnitsa

Guest, Ukraine in European Dialogue
(November – December 2017)


Ordinary People under Occupation: Mechanisms of Formation and Presentation of Biographies

Occupations reveal different sides of human nature. An occupation can turn a woman or man into a hero, a resister, a traitor, a killer, and after that into a resister again (or a traitor, or a collaborator). The behavioral tactics of a person living under occupation can be described by only one word – zigzag. What mechanisms of self-identification do people use under occupation and after liberation? In what way do they explain their choice to be or not to be a resistance fighter, a collaborator, or a bystander? If these explanations follow a pattern, how does it change during occupation and after?

Previous stays at the IWM:
2016, Guest, Ukraine in European Dialogue