I study the Soviet Union as a multinational state and society, with a particular focus on social and cultural history. My current project, The Cultural Politics of the Nation after Stalin, 1953-1991, explores how intellectuals, especially those of rural origins, sought to transform cultural understandings of the nation after the death of Stalin. My research examines writers from across the Soviet Union, with a particular focus on the Soviet republics of Russia, Ukraine, Armenia, and Moldova.
I am assistant professor at the University of Colorado Boulder. During the 2020-2021 academic year, I was a postdoctoral fellow at the Harvard University Davis Center for Russian and Eurasian Studies. I defended my dissertation and graduated with my PhD in History from Harvard University in May 2020. My dissertation received the 2021 Harold K. Gross Dissertation Prize from the Harvard History Department and was a finalist for the 2021 Cohen-Tucker Dissertation Prize awarded by the Association for Slavic, East European, and Eurasian Studies.
I first began to engage with questions of of national identity in the Soviet Union as an undergraduate majoring in history at Arizona State University. After two summers of studying Eastern Armenian at ASU's Critical Languages Institute, I spent the 2006-2007 academic year at Yerevan State University in Armenia on an NSEP/Boren grant. After graduation, I traveled on a Fulbright English Teaching Assistantship to Moldova, where I taught English at Comrat State University from 2009 to 2010. In 2010 I moved to Pristina, Kosovo, where I worked as the in-country project officer at Future Voters of Kosovo, a civic education initiative funded by a State Department grant to Arizona State University. In 2011 I matriculated at Harvard University in the master's program in Russian, East European and Central Asian Studies. My thesis project focused on the role that mass education and the Soviet system of interethnic relations played in fostering loyalty to the Soviet Union among minorities in the south of Moldova.
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