Publicador de contenidos

Back to 2014_04_14_ICS_Crimea: una historiadora apuesta en la Universidad de Navarra por dar voz a los medios rusos en la opinión pública internacional

Crimea: a historian bets on giving Russian media a voice in international public opinion

"The Crimean issue has made it clear that there must be more willingness for understanding between the East and the West," Elena Kashina said at ICS

Image description
Jaume Aurell, director of high school business and Humanism and partner of the ICS; Elena Kashina, historian of the University of York; and Montserrat Herrero, principal investigator of project 'Religion and Civil Society'. PHOTO: Isabel Solana
14/04/14 16:08 Isabel Solana

"In Ukraine and other countries Russian newspapers are being banned. Thus, international public opinion is not allowed to know an alternative point of view on the Crimean issue." He said this at the Institute for Culture and Society (ICS) of the University of Navarra the Russian historian Elena Kashina, a researcher at the University of York (UK). The expert visited the campus Pamplona to give a lecture seminar of the project 'Religion and Civil Society'.

On the annexation of Crimea to Russia, he noted that the people expressed their will freely and that the observers of the process did not detect any violation of democratic procedures.

According to him, there are two sides to this topic: "Historically, it seems indisputable that this area is part of Russia. The then President Khrushchev ceded Crimea to Ukraine because it was all part of the Soviet Union. He did not imagine that later it would be a different state. As for the current status , if there were more Western media representation in Crimea and they knew the picture firsthand, many doubts would be resolved."

Professor Kashina pointed out that the development of events has made it clear that there should be "more willingness for understanding between the Eastern and Western worlds". Thus, she stressed that "greater mutual acceptance of different perspectives, paying attention to the historical development , would lead to a more stable and peaceful status ."

The use of images to legitimize power

Elena Kashina gave a seminar at the ICS on the use of iconography in the 16th century as tool for the legitimization of power. "Ivan the Terrible," she explained, "was the first officially crowned tsar. His degree scroll corresponded in the West to that of a duke or prince and became equal to kings. He needed to legitimize himself and used diplomacy to do so. He made his new status known in the European courts and states by relying on iconography, which served to establish his right to rule on a transcendent basis".

Kashina said that similar uses of iconography are taking place today. "Now wars are not fought on the battlefield, but in the media. The power of images has become a real force and we have to analyze how to protect ourselves from them when they are used for propaganda purposes," she concluded.