Social identities and group loyalties in the contemporary Ukrainian society
The thesis presents the sociological conceptualization of the phenomena “social
identity” and “group loyalty” with their empirical approbation in the national, regional and
temporal perspective. The peculiarities of the main approaches to the study and
interpretation of key concepts in the socio-humanities sciences in general, and in sociology
in particular are presented. The thesis proposes the author’s definition of the concept of
“group loyalty” with the construction of the conceptual scale of its content. Within the
framework of dissertation the idea of hyphenism of E. Bogardus has been borrowed for the
improvement of interpretation of double loyalty within a particular social system. The
thesis proposes the expanded classification of factors that form group loyalties with an
emphasis on conventional factors that include traditional and instrumental subtypes.
The socio-historical context of the formation and interaction of identities and
loyalties, with the distinction of its main characteristics: “invincible modernization”,
transit instead of transformation, experience of various historical heritages of geographical
parts of Ukraine, has been substantiated. The research has been conducted on the basis of
the biangulation of the basic provisions of the theory of multiple modernities and the
theory of morphogenesis. The application of these theories made it possible to model
different types of probable interrelationships between the phenomena under investigation
in the Ukrainian society, which is at the stage of transformation. It has been proved that
the chosen approach is quite relevant, since it allowed taking into account the correlations
of the structure/ system – the agents.
The thesis presents the hierarchy of the most salience identities, in which sexual,
family, local, regional and national identities occupy the first five positions. The ranking
of the most regionalizable indicators, among which the first three stages were occupied by
language attitudes and practices, has been determined. The top five also include the
practice of celebrating Soviet holidays and the traditional model of national identity
“Ukrainian” based on Ukrainian-language practices and territorial rooting. Thus, the
lowest regionalizing potential belongs to the local and regional identities with appropriate
loyalties, as well as to the loyalty to the representatives of the UOC-KP.
The strength of “old” and “new” regionalism in the formation of two important
regions in the West and East of Ukraine is defined. It is found that “hybrid” regionalism
with signs of “traditional” and “new” subtypes is characteristic of these regions. At the
same time, it was ascertained that in the minds of Lvivians there are more pronounced
signs of “old” regionalism, and in the minds of Donetskians – of “new” one.
The reliability verification of the model of regionalization of contemporary Ukraine
by O. Stehniy and M. Churylov, has been fulfilled. According to the verification the
regions have shown varying degrees of integrity by indicators of the interaction of social
identities and group loyalties: from the highest and high enough (the West and South-East
regions) to the medium level of integrity (the South-West, the East, the North-East, the
North, the North-West and the South regions) and to the low level of integrity (the Central
The thesis proposes a map of Ukraine with seventeen regions in the perspective of
2013, 2015, 2017, based on indicators of the interaction of identities and loyalties. Five
regions, out of seventeen, demonstrated a high level of integrity and a consistent grouping
of the districts that were included. The remaining ten were manifested as regions-districts
characterized by non-system clustering with adjacent districts. Kyiv occupied the position
of a separate situational region with a median status; the ARC was referred to the category
of a separate region as a result of its annexation by the Russian Federation.
The theoretical and practical value of the thesis is determined by the content of the
proposed concepts, conclusions and recommendations that can be used for the
development of training courses, for new interdisciplinary research in the field of
regionalistics, as well as for optimization of regional policy in contemporary Ukraine.
Key words: social identities, group loyalties, region, regionalism, hyphenism, theory
of multiple modernities, theory of morphogenesis.