In the Maelstrom: The Waffen-SS "Galicia" Division and Its Legacy
An estimated 25,000 Ukrainians served in the Fourteenth Waffen-SS "Galicia" Division. Conflicting accounts of their reasons for enlistment and continuing accusations of wartime criminality have fuelled controversial debate for decades. Our presenter's new book, 'In The Maelstrom' addresses both its wartime experience and its postwar fate by drawing on archival research that includes interrogation records, interviews, memoirs, testimonies, and creative literature.
The accounts of veterans often begin with being drafted into the force in their teenage years and continue into postwar life in Italian and British internment camps. These reminiscences are compared with wartime records and recent narratives. Professor and author Myroslav Shkandrij discusses the commissions of inquiry into war crimes during the 1980s, recent debates over the issue of monuments and commemoration, and different ways in which veterans, the diaspora community, Western governments, and researchers have approached the division and its history. In the Maelstrom brings to light the underexplored Ukrainian experience in the "Galicia" Division during and after the war - an experience that resonates strongly today.
ABOUT THE PRESENTER
Presenter Myroslav Shkandrij is Professor of Slavic Studies at the University of Manitoba. His previous books include Ukrainian Nationalism, Jews in Ukrainian Literature, and Russia and Ukraine. His most recent book, In the Maelstrom looks at the Waffen-SS "Galicia" division and its legacy. He has curated exhibitions on the avant-garde in the 1920s and written extensively on twentieth-century Ukraine.