The Gates of Europe: A History of Ukraine

The Gates of Europe: A History of Ukraine

Nov. 30, 2015
4:00pm — 5:30pm
6th Floor, Woodrow Wilson Center

Washington, DC

Ukraine is currently embroiled in a tense battle with Russia to preserve its economic and political independence. But today’s conflict is only the latest in a long history of battles over Ukraine’s existence as a separate nation. Situated between Central Europe and Russia, Ukraine was shaped by the empires that have used it as a strategic gateway between East and West—from the Romans and Ottomans to the Third Reich and the Soviet Union, all have engaged in global fights for supremacy on Ukrainian soil. Serhii Plokhii provides a unique insight into the current crisis by examining main trends in Ukraine’s longue durée history.

Serhii Plokhii is the Mykhailo Hrushevsky Professor of Ukrainian History and the director of the Ukrainian Research Institute at Harvard University. A leading authority on the history of Eastern Europe, he has published extensively in English, Ukrainian and Russian. Plokhii is the author of several influential monographs, including Yalta: The Price of Peace (2010); The Cossack Myth: History and Nationhood in the Age of Empires (2012), and The Last Empire: The Final Days of the Soviet Union (2014). Plokhii’s books won numerous awards, including the Lionel Gelber Prize for the world’s best non-fiction book in English on foreign affairs, and Pushkin House (London) Russian Book Prize (2015). Plokhii’s most recent book, The Gates of Europe: A History of Ukraine will be released by the Basic Books and Penguin in November 2015.

The Washington History Seminar is sponsored jointly by the National History Center of the American Historical Association and the Wilson Center’s History and Public Policy Program. It meets weekly during the academic year. See for the schedule, speakers, topics, and dates as well as webcasts and podcasts. The seminar thanks the Society for Historians of American Foreign Relations for their support.


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