Chinese readers rush to buy books on Russia and Ukraine as conflict escalates
Published: Mar 01, 2022 02:58 AM


As the conflict between Russia and Ukraine continues to escalate, it has drawn sustained attention from the public in China. Books on this topic have become bestsellers and some have even sold out on various Chinese e-commerce platforms. 

Books about Russian President Vladimir Putin soon became the most frequently searched product on e-commerce platform after the outbreak of the Russia-Ukraine conflict, according to The Paper. 

The online bookstore had to replenish its inventory and set a waiting list for the books. Statistics from the platform show that "Putin" has become one of its top 10 most frequently searched words. 

The book The Gates of Europe, a History of Ukraine, by Serhii Plokhy, the Mykhailo Hrushevsky Professor of Ukrainian History at Harvard University and the director of the university's Ukrainian Research Institute, provides readers with a quick grasp to understand the reasons behind the current situation in Ukraine. 

According to the author, to understand what is happening in Ukraine today and its impact on the world, it is necessary to examine the roots of these problems, that is to say, the origin and development of Ukraine's national and ethnic identity.

The book published in March 2019, sold over 1,000 copies on February 25, when the conflict escalated, according to its publisher CITIC Press Group, who arranged an urgent reprint of 19,000 copies last week to meet the demand of readers. 

Another book, The History of Ukraine, written by Paul Kubicek, a professor of political science at Oakland University, emphasizes on the analysis of the political identity of Ukraine. 

Despite the conflict, Russia and Ukraine are closely linked by history, culture, language and religion. Many Russian-language writers, including Nikolai Gogol, Isaac Babel, Vasily Grossman, as well as Andrey Kurkov who was listed as the best Russian-language writer in Ukraine in 2013, have Ukrainian roots.