Ukrainian media discourse and political rhetoric have been in crisis since 2014, the time of Russian aggression in the east of Ukraine, particularly in terms of nominating both the armed conflict itself, the other party and the root of it.
The overall situation regarding the coverage of the unacknowledged war by journalists is developing as a process of creating euphemisms and getting round them afterwards: a certain way of exposing the “language corruption” as a type of manipulation, on the one hand, and revealing the so-called “foreign meanings” in the war language (according to Georgiy Pocheptsov’s theory of war of meanings), on the other hand.
Under these challenging circumstances a certain reference point for media discourse is official political discourse. This paper analyzes the speeches of the President of Ukraine, delivered in 2016, which are characterized by his constant retreat from the Aesopian language when assessing the was with Russia and by emerging new messages.
The necessity of changing the emphasis on the use of the concepts of "Mazepetin", "Petliuvian" and "Bandera" from the shame of pride, once and for all to restore historical truth and to preserve it as an important component of our identity; the importance of a new understanding of the meaning of the Day of Victory over Nazism in the Second World War and the Day of Remembrance and Reconciliation in order to prevent the expansion of the Soviet-Russian imperial ideology more than ever in Ukraine.
The research has shown that in contemporary Ukrainian discourse, both in the media and in politics, there are trends in awareness and overcoming of euphemism, attempts to develop a special terminology of the language of war, aspirations for the most precise and unequivocal expression of the painful themes that the Ukrainian society is concerned with. Such a tendency can be defined as a certain counteraction to the "hybridization" of the truth, which is increasingly being considered today as a great danger and threat to national identity in Ukraine.
1. Еuphemism (1971) Dictionary of the Ukrainian Language, in 11 volumes: Academic dictionary, Naukova dumka, Kyiv, p. 453.
2. Kylymnyk, Ju. (2006) “Corruption language” and its danger”, Denj, [Newspaper Day], 7.04.
3. Pochepcov, Gh. (2016) “Smisli i viyni” [Meanings and War: Ukraine and Russia in the information and semantic wars], Vydavnychyj dim KMA, Kyiv, 316 p. [in Ukrainian].