Voices of Resistance and Hope

The rallies that gripped Ukraine in the winter of 2013-2014, also known as the Euromaidan or the Revolution of Dignity, became one of the most massive protest movements in the history of independent Ukraine. Those events united people of diverse social, ethnic, regional, and political backgrounds and will remain a hot topic of public and academic discussions for a long time.

"Voices of Resistance and Hope: Kyiv-Lviv-Kharkiv" was an endeavor to document the experiences, attitudes, motivations, and expectations of Euromaidan participants. When starting this project, we wanted to hear and preserve for further understanding the voices of participants and activists of the Ukrainian protests through their individual perspectives and experiences. Personal stories, emotions, and moods of the creators of the events which tomorrow will become memories allow us to look at the Euromaidan from the microperspective of experiencing the historic moment. To this end, we chose the method of in-depth ‘here-and-now’ interviews with the participants and activists. The conversations were held on the maidans of Kyiv, Lviv, and Kharkiv in December 2013 and February 2014. Since the protest movement also had considerable resonance abroad, several interviews were conducted with Euromaidan participants in Poland (Warsaw, Lublin).

The sample of “Voices of Resistance and Hope” is not representative. Nevertheless we did our best to reflect the specific features of the protest movement in each city and talk to people of various ages, sexes, and affiliations. The questions we asked were about their experience and forms of participation in the Euromaidan and similar protests, their motivations and feelings, the importance of different sites, their assessment of the slogans used, reflections on European integration and European values, and hopes for the future. Later, in connection with the further exacerbation of the sociopolitical situation in Ukraine, we updated the questionnaire for the ‘second wave’ of the survey. The methodology remained the same, but we added some questions concerning potential changes in the protesters’ attitude to the state and society under the influence of the Maidan events, various groups of protesters, heroes and anti-heroes of the Maidan and Ukraine, and historical analogies. In Kyiv we also used the method of projective drawings which help analyze the symbolic and cognitive perception of the spaces covered by the protests.

The project managers are Natalia Otrishchenko and Anna Chebotariova.

This collection is still a work in progress.