• Elena Yakovleva, Alejandro Marx, Marianne Rijke

Origins and developments of the Crisis in Ukraine


Ukraine’s Geographical History

The name “Ukraine”, derived from the Old East Slavic word ukraina (оукраина), is traditionally interpreted as “borderland” and was used for border regions of the Rus’.(1) This borderland has a long history of geographical changes that have important significance for the current situation the country is in. Samuel Huntington predicted in his book “The Clash of Civilizations” that this clash would cut right through Ukraine: “a civilizational approach … highlights the possibility of Ukraine splitting in half, a separation which cultural factors would lead one to predict might be more violent than that of Czechoslovakia, but far less bloody than that of Yugoslavia.”(2)

Ukraine and the 1921 Peace of Riga