Jan 13, 2005

The Analysis of the Text Books on the History of Ukraine on the Matter of Creation of the Negative I

Safure Kadzhametova
Association of the Crimean Tatar teachers “Maarifchi”

1. Viktor Misan “The Stories on the History of Ukraine”, 5 grade. Kiev “Geneza” 1997.

The content of this manual contains evident process of creating of negative image of Crimean Tatars in the historic aspect, including ones in the field of the relations with Ukrainian people, that could prove the following facts.
1. The description in this or that aspect the history of the relations of Ukrainian Kassakship and Krimean Khanate provided on the pages 106 – 118. Here we can notice significant dominance of negative description. The total amount of mentioning about Crimean Tatars comprises 26 times:
- in neutral aspect – 5 times;
- in positive aspect – 1 time;
- in negative aspect – 20 times.
Even the arrow which wounded Getman Sagaydachny acquires the nationality – it is “Tatar” arrow (though at that time Sagaydachniy fights according to the history with Turks).
Conselement of the facts of positive relationships between Ukrainian and Crimean Tatar peoples and “blowing up” the negative ones. In the liberation fight of Bogdan Hmelnicky in the battle against Poland troops in the forest “Zholtie vody” (the battle itself is described), but the battle by the White Church (doesn’t described at all), though the battle by Berestechko is described in every details when the Khan’s troops went out from the battle field. Compare: the description of the two first battles in the text – in the settlement Zheltie Vody and by the town Pilyavcy occupies in the text book 19 lines, the last, the one by Berestechko – 90 lines, that allowed the author to describe in every details in what difficult situation found themselves the troups of Bogdan Khmelnicky after the betrayal of Tatars. The association of Cossacks with the troops of the Khan in the beginning of the battle was the only positive act on the part of Crimean Tatars that was mentioned by the author.
The following development of the events destroys even this single positive factor. The hide of other facts of positive relationship of Crimean Khan and Cossakship allows the author to make the conclusion that “Tatar Khan was able to sell and betray Ukraine for money” (page 118).
4. The description of the single event as common. For example, here is the way the author describes the treatment of Tatars with captured elderly people: “The old and disabled people were given to Tatar children in order that they trained to shoot with a bow and to sabre”. If this facts ever existed it were single instance but not the general occurrence.
5. The same example shows how it is possible to strengthen the process of creation of the negative ethnic image by means of using the descriptions which provoke strong emotional influence. Taking into account that the text book is mend for 11-12 year-old children, whose emotional perception still prevails under the rational. It is possible to make the conclusion that this example (the use of elderly people) could stamped in their memory for all their life time, arousing hostility towards Crimean Tatars, not only to grown up ones but also towards Crimean Tatar children.
The usage of contrasts in description, when negative actions of one part are described alongside with the positive ones of the other part. In the material the contrast is created artificially between negative war campaign of Crimean Tatars and positive ones (with noble goal) war campaign of Cossacks against the Crimea. This could serve as an example of the process of creation of negative image of one nation by the creation of the positive image of the other (and visa versa).
8. In the text there is no mentioning the economic, cultural and other relations between Crimean Khanate and the Cossacks, that undoubtedly, assertion of the idea about the historic heritage in the relations between Ukrainian and Crimean Tatar peoples as exceptionally hostile and negative (wars and forays).
2. A.K. Shvidko “The History of Ukraine 16-18 centuries”, the text book for 8 grade. Kiev “Geneza” 1999 (published in Russian and Ukrainian).
1. Lets have a look the comparative volume of the material of Chapter 8 “Turkey and Crimean Khanate in the second half of 16 century – first half of the 17 century” which describes the basic historic and economic peculiarities of Crimean Khanate (pages 66 - 70):
Thus, comparatively neutral description of Crimean Khanate occupies 17% of the material. Evidently negative role of the Khanate towards Ukrainian population (slaves) – 50 % of the material. The rest 33% describes the dependence and unindependance of Crimean Khanate.
2. The interesting thing is also the content of these 25 lines, which describe geography, history and economy of Crimean Khanate.
The first sentence says “Crimean Khanate of the 16 century occupied less than a half of the peninsular. The rest more rich and futile lands together with the main port Kafa belonged to Turkey”. One more phrase: “Productive forces of the Crimea couldn’t feed the population of the peninsular. The lack of the goods was compensated by spoils of the war campaigns to neighbor countries”. As the experts note the majority of the population of the Crimea constantly fought in Persia, Europe and on the first place in Ukraine.
This item contains the bar ideas of the whole 25 lines, dedicated to the description of Crimean Khanate as the community of gangsters whose main source of living is taking of captives and spoils. The author also notes that this kind of business was typical for the majority of the population of the Crimea. And, finally, the idea that the majority of the population fought constantly, and in the first place in Ukraine. The idea imposed here of constant war between Crimean Khanate and Ukraine, except for being a historic falsification, naturally inclines students on the definite attitude towards Crimean Tatars.
At the end of the chapter there are three control questions which asked for the fixing of the material and accentuate the attention of the students on the definite aspects of the material. The questions are:
1. What were the reasons of the predatory campaigns of Tatars and Turks against Ukraine?
2. With what goal Tatars and Turks took “yarys”? (yarys- captured). The knowledge fixed by the answer to these questions and fixed in the memory of the students, undoubtedly, contribute to the fixing of the negative ethnic stereotype of Crimean Tatar people.
3. In Chapter 9 of this text book “Ukrainian Cossacks in the beginning of the 17 century. Getman Sagaydachniy” two items are emphasized: “Turkish – Tatar attacks” and “The epoch of heroic campaigns”. In the items “Turkish – Tatar attacks” (page 72) we can pay attention on that picturesqueness and emotionalytyness the material is provided with. Here we can find the following sentences “There wasn’t a year when Turks and Tatars invaded Ukraine, burned its villages and towns, killed its citizens took yarys”. “In 1616 Tatars invaded Tatars invaded Podol’e” as the contemporary writes, “hands in our blood up to the elbow and vastened everything with fire and sword”. “However, Turkish-Tatar hordes vasted Ukrainian land for years”. For example, in 1626 Osman Empire sent Tatars who reached Galicia to plunder and to intimidate Ukraine.
Except for the surplus of negative-figurative provision of the material the whole item consist of, we can notice the fact that except for the lack in those times the State of Ukraine, the author constantly notes that aim of Turkish-Tatar campaigns right against Ukraine and Ukrainian lands that undoubtedly, must left ones trace in the mind of the contemporary Ukrainians.
4. The following paragraph “The epoch of the Heroic Campaigns” (pages 273) describes 8 successful large scale campaigns of Cossacks against Turks and Tatars. The title of the paragraph calls attention itself “Heroic Campaigns”, though except for the liberation of the captured and slaves they were as predatory and gangster as the ones described on the part of Turks and Tatars and the main goal of these campaigns was taking of plunder. The fact that in the result of such campaigns perished Turks and Tatars isn’t even cosealed, but it is regarded as the positive fact, because it “weakened the military strength of the enemy”. For example, in the campaign against Kafa were killed 14 southlands of Turk warriors, however the death of local civil population is passing over the silence.
5 Here we can note that two paragraphs “Turkish-Tatar attacks” and “The Epoch of Heroic Campaigns” are close together and they tell about the events of the same level – war attacks but they described absolutely in the different aspects and in the different language that lead to the result that the campaigns of one part are considered as negative when the campaigns of the other part as positive (even heroic phenomena). Due to this methods the natural contrast is appears between negative Tatars and positive Cossacks which serves as an additional mean of creation of negative image of Crimean Tatar people in Ukrainians opinion.
In this aspect to our mind, the main idea is emphasized that in light of that Tatars are the source of negative to Ukraine so to kill and to rob them is blessing deed.
6. Chapter 28 (page 217) is entitled “The Fight Against Turkish-Tatar Aggression in the Second Half of the 17 Century” (pages 217-223).
Considering the correlation of the number of attacks described in this chapter we can see that Turkish-Tatar attacks do not prevail, however, the very title of the chapter beforehand incline the reader on the definite way of perception. Moreover we find with already described above method of evaluation of the events when the events of the same level (war attacks) are considered in different scale of evaluation. The attacks of one part is an aggression (negative), the attacks of the other is the defense from the aggression (positive).
To our mind the attempt to regard the whole history of Cossack and Russian attacks against the Crimea as the fight against Turkish-Tatar aggression is as a matter of fact, the process of artificial idealization of one of the part.