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Learn & Unlearn: Anti-racism Resource Guide

Understanding the Ukraine and Russia conflict

The Invasion of Ukraine and its Impact Worldwide

You might have only recently seen mass coverage in the news, but the conflict between Ukraine and Russia started before this year. To fully understand the impacts of the 2022 invasion of modern-day Ukraine by the Russian military, we must spend time unpacking their history. Current photos, posts, and stories spanning social and mass media, reflect that this crisis is as much about legitimacy, sovereignty, and recognizing the unique Ukrainian culture and identity as it is about land borders.

No matter where we are and how many miles are between us, it’s important to keep ourselves informed about world issues. Did you know Ukraine is one of the top producers of seeds, grains, and oils to the global market?1 Did you know Russia is a key source of fertilizer, natural gas and fuel? A war that started with the invasion of one country by another country has ramifications for countries all over the world. Have you noticed higher gas and ticket prices? Countries around the world are experiencing higher prices too. Russia and Ukraine being important suppliers of two2 significant materials: food and energy, have forced countries to turn to alternative means for energy and farming while risking growing national debt, hunger, and housing shortage to shelter displaced people.2

In addition to economic issues, we must also recognize the social issues affecting civilians’ daily lives. Social issues that we face in the USA bear similarities to issues in Ukraine. Some 5,051.58 miles away, the same global COVD-19 pandemic is impacting communities and has spread as a result of the invasion.3 Our discussions about racism, privilege, power, discrimination, and oppression aren’t limited to the United States. Affected residents fleeing from impacted areas in Ukraine and Russia are facing discrimination and exclusion. Residents who are white are given more aid while residents who are Black are being withheld from receiving aid. Additionally, LGBTQ+ residents are facing similar barriers that impact their ability to find safety.4 By taking time to learn about world matters, we also expand our understanding of those issues affecting us. Concerns of the world are your concerns too! Don’t wait until you feel the impact to care about or do something. 


“You can’t think of the global and close your eyes to the details.”  - Volodymyr Zelensk

A Reminder

History is ever-evolving and the information included below does not encompass the entire history and experiences of those who have ties with Ukraine or Russia. The information and resources included below does not represent the narratives of an entire population of many individuals. Do you have suggestions and/or resources to add? Email

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To Read

To Research

  • “A historian corrects misunderstandings about Ukrainian and Russian History” by Ronald Suny from The Conversation, 2022 [Article]
  • “Russia invades Ukraine - 5 essential reads from experts” by Naomi Schalot from The Conversation, 2022 [Article]
  • “Why Ukrainian Ammericans are committed to preserving Ukrainian culture - and national sovereignty” by Katja Kolcio, 2022 [Article]
  • “Russia’s at war with Ukraine. Here’s how we got here” by Becky Sullivan from NPR, 2022 [Article]
  • “The Ukrainian Crisis: In Russia’s Long Shadow” by Serhy Yekelchyk from Origins: Current Events in Historical Perspective, OSU, 2014 [Article]
  • “Russia’s war in Ukraine: Identity, history and conflict” by Jeffrey Mankoff from the Center for Strategic & International Studies, 2022 [Article]

To Watch

To Act

To Reflect

For most of us, our newsfeed, our social circles, and our attention is fixed around where we are physically located, but what would happen if our attention was centered on more than just the problems we face in our immediate bubbles? 

  • What is preventing that from happening now?
  • What do you have control over?
  • How would that change your understanding of social justice?

What other information do you need to stay informed about the Ukraine and Russia conflict? 

Works Cited

  1. US Department of Agriculture, “Ukraine Agricultural Production and Trade,” April 2022

  2. Alina Selyukh, Alyson Hurt, Connie Hanzhang Jin, & Nick Underwood, “The ripple effects of Russia's war in Ukraine are changing the world,” Ukraine invasion - explained, NPR, May 10, 2022

  3. Dmytro Chumachenko, Tetyana Chumachenko, “Impact of war on the dynamics of COVID-19 in Ukraine,” BMK Global Health, April 15, 2022 

  4. Nadine White, “Ukraine: Concerns mount as Black people report racism while fleeing war zone,” The Independent, February 27, 2022