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“Russian Warship, Go fuck yourself”. Romantic Narratives of the Hero in the War of Ukraine
In times of war, “heroes” play a key role. The romantic construction of the “heroes” that defend a righteous cause against a more powerful and unjust enemy, often serves as a means to legitimize political narratives and violent actions. The iconic phrase “Russian warship, go fuck yourself!” uttered by a Ukrainian border guard during an imminent Russian attack on Snake Island in February 2022, became a globally-known symbol of heroism and resistance that generated great solidarity against the Russian invasion of Ukraine. Taking up notions of hero studies in political science and IR, and utilizing a narrative analysis method that focuses on the elements of setting, characterization and emplotment, this project examines how British media outlets (Guardian; The Times & The Sun) construct the figure of the romantic “hero” within the context of the Snake Island incident, while it also delves into the unintended consequences of such heroization.

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