Ukraine House in Denmark together with the Danish Foreign Policy Society will conduct a panel discussion on the role of culture and identity for the resilience of Ukraine and democratic Europe. It will be a part of the official opening of Ukraine House in Denmark on 24th of February and take place at Christianshavn, Gammel Dok, Strandgade 27B, 1401 København.
One of the most important missions of Ukraine House in Denmark as a cultural institution is a dialogue between Ukrainian and Danish professional communities and civil societies.
"It is only through dialogue of cultures that a common understanding of the learnings of our history may emerge and therefore pave the path for finding sustainable solutions to major problems that both Ukrainians and Danes are passionate about. We all need to ensure fairness in the society, defend freedom and dignity of the individual and foster long term well being of the democratic community as well as protect it from internal and external threats. The first panel discussion featuring the keynote from Serhiy Plokhiy, an unsurpassed authority on the history of Ukraine and the region will give a start to the program of dialogues hosted by Ukraine House to take place on a regular basis in the artistic setting of our home and involving the leading Danish and Ukrainian experts, artists, opinion leaders reflecting on the joint histories, cultures, identities, and philosophies of the two countries", says Nataliia Popovych, chairperson of Ukraine House in Denmark.
The opening panel discussion will commence with "The Battle for Ukraine: What History Can Foretell about the Outcome of the Current War" keynote by Serhiy Plokhii, director of the Ukrainian Research Institute at Harvard University. He is the most acclaimed Ukrainian American historian and a best-selling author. Why Ukraine’s victory is so critical to the future of democracy in the world, why culture is central in the ability of the democratic countries to stay democratic and what the history of the Ukrainian resistance means and can teach the developed European democracies will be explored in the course of the discussion.
“Ukrainians probably have just as much right to brag about their role in changing the world as Scots and other nationalities about which books have been written asserting their claim to have shaped the course of human history… Ukraine stands at the Gates of Europe and the world and it should not stand alone in its courage to counter Russia. History, above all, informs Vladimir Putin’s policy towards Ukraine and Ukraine's history can foretell the consequences of this war,”
says Dr. Plokhii.
The opening panel discussion will be moderated by director of the Danish Foreign Policy Society Charlotte Flindt Pedersen.
“I am as director of The Danish Foreign Policy Society greatly honored that we co-host this important event on the opening of Ukraine House. In view of the Russian attack on Ukraine's territorial integrity, identity, sovereignty and right to exist as a nation, the opening of Ukraine House in Copenhagen on the 24th of February will be a perfect demarcation of the sad and bitter anniversary of Russia’s full-scale invasion of Ukraine on February 24th opening a cultural embassy of Ukraine in Copenhagen”, says Charlotte Flindt Pedersen.
The discussion will also feature an expert from the leading Danish cultural institutions and think tanks such as Dr. Frederik Rosén, director, the Nordic Center for Cultural Heritage and Armed Conflict, Adjunct Associate Professor at the Department of Cross-Cultural and Regional Studies at the University of Copenhagen.
“We see a larger battle about history and historical narratives which ultimately boils down to claims about territories and the use of cultural arguments to legitimize mass atrocities and destruction. Yet in the Euro-Atlantic camp, we are only beginning to understand how our enemies exploit the cultural domain as part of their strategy”, says Frederik Rosén.
Julie Arnfred Bojesen, Director of Ukrainian-Danish Youth House underlines that the full-scale invasion has emphasized the importance of civil society support and cultural exchange, as we see in the Ukrainian-Danish Youth House.
“It is crucial for the outcome of the war that young people feel supported, inspired and hopeful. And for the recovery of Ukraine, it is crucial that it is not empty structures that are rebuilt, but that the cultural and civic life also is maintained and keeps the country alive. This is best done in solidaric partnerships that also strengthens Europe as a whole,"
states Julie Arnfred Bojesen.
The opening panel discussion about the role of culture in the resilience and future of democratic Ukraine is supported by Wistifoundation.
The board members of the Wistifoundation were in no doubt to support the opening of the Ukraine House. The founder of Wistifoundation Folmer Wisti established the Danish Cultural Institute in 1940 in the wake of the German occupation of Denmark. To him it was important to nurture international understanding through the free meeting between people across borders, open sharing of knowledge and cultural exchange in the broadest sense to support a thriving democracy. In this way the Ukraine House is at the core of the purpose of the Wistifoundation.
Where: Gammel Dok Strandgade 27B, 1401 Copenhagen
When: 24th February at 16:30 (invitation only)
For more information, please contact Nataliia Popovych, Chairperson, Ukraine House in Denmark, +45 29 74 47 05