Social processes at the beginning of the 20th сentury in understanding of the Dnipro Ukraine’s intellectuals

Yaroslav Platmir


At the turn of the 19th and 20th centuries Ukraine did not have a national state, was divided into two large regions, which were part of the Russian and Austro-Hungarian empires. Therefore, Ukrainian intellectuals had to live and work in difficult political conditions, often going to very substantial compromises with imperial forces, represented by both Russian officials and comparatively more numerous Russian intellectual circles. This had a significant impact on the nature and tasks of the Ukrainian movement, substantially corrected both tactical steps and a general strategic course towards its own autonomy and statehood. It is important to note that the evolution of Ukrainian national ideology took place under the influence of European ideas. They, however, captured the thoughts of very narrow circles of humanitarians, most of whom engaged in the study of ethnographic and folklore spheres of peasant life, and therefore, were concerned about a relatively limited range of issues. At the same time, the comprehension of the past and present problems took place against the background of the involvement of a new generation of public figures in the movement. In the territory of Naddniprianshchyna, it was formed in conditions of rapid modernization, while maintaining the imperial (autocratic) system of power. After analyzing all the key aspects of the proposed problem, the author came to the conclusion that in relation to social processes (realities) at the beginning of the 20th century in the Naddniprianshchyna, the Ukrainian intelligentsia focused on socio-cultural, national, regional, and, to a lesser extent, economic and social life. The choice between "culture and politics" was too limited. In a situation, where many forces needed to solve internal (party, interpersonal, etc.) problems, such a local orientation significantly weakened the influence of intellectual circles on society, particularly the peasantry. At that time, when the Ukrainian intelligentsia claimed to be the main driving force of national affirmation, the establishment of ties between the Western (sub-Austrian) and the Eastern (sub-Russian) communities, it did little to its influence among the general population, the common people, that was a gross mistake in the new historical conditions.


Society; Intelligentsia; Peasantry; Culture; Politics

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