VIRTUAL EVENT. “We Will Carry the Legless and Feed the Armless”: The Ukrainian Community and Disabled Veterans of the Galician Army

Wednesday, April 22, 2020
12:00pm EST
Zoom Webinar & Facebook Live

This event will be held virtually and streamed as a Zoom webinar as well as on our Facebook page via Facebook Live. There will be no in-person event.

Click here at 12pm to join the Zoom webinar, or tune in on the Harriman Institute's Facebook page.

Please join the Ukrainian Studies Program at the Harriman Institute for a lecture by Oksana Vynnyk (University of Alberta, Edmonton).

After World War I, the majority of Western European, Central European and North American countries established social security programs to provide assistance to disabled demobilized soldiers. However, the Polish Invalid Act of 1921 excluded disabled veterans of the Ukrainian Galician army from the newly established welfare system, as they were soldiers who had fought against the Polish state. They were left without the government’s financial support and the dominant Polish narrative described them as enemies of the state. The Lviv intelligentsia constructed the Ukrainian national narrative and the notion of “the Ukrainian war invalid” by establishing a system of assistance to disabled soldiers of the Galician army. Through the examination of the interaction between the Ukrainian Association for Aid to Disabled Soldiers and the authorities, Oksana Vynnyk analyzes the nuanced aspects of the relationships between government and Ukrainian civil society and shows that these relationships were an important aspect of state-building in interwar Poland.

Oksana Vynnyk holds a PhD in History from the University of Alberta, Edmonton. Her dissertation “‘Postwar Normalization’: The Reintegration of Disabled Veterans to Civilian Life in Interwar Lviv” analyzes how various groups of disabled soldiers, the government, and society in interwar Poland dealt with the traumatic experiences and consequences of the Great War. Between September 2015 and May 2018 Oksana worked as an editorial assistant at Canadian Slavonic Papers, the journal of the Canadian Association of Slavists. Currently, she is Visiting Assistant Professor of History at the Harriman Institute, Columbia University.