Oleh Kotsyuba is a Postdoctoral Research Fellow at the Ukrainian Research Institute, Harvard University. He works on 20th century and contemporary Russian, Ukrainian, and East European literatures and cultures.
Dr. Kotsyuba's research focuses on literature that struggles to come to terms with the experience of living in authoritarian contexts. His dissertation offered a radical revision of the strategies that culture employs to evade the demands that oppressive regimes impose on art and artists. His study of the works of Ukrainian and Russian writers of the Soviet period broke new ground in reconstructing the conditions of cultural and political transformations in the late Soviet Union.
Dr. Kotsyuba currently works on a project that studies the cultural afterlife of oppressive regimes after their formal demise. He focuses on the responses in Russian literature and theater to the recent events of the Russian occupation of the Crimea and the hostilities in Ukraine's Donbas region. His research points to a deep ethical crisis that Russian society and culture face when dealing with the ongoing Russian aggression against Ukraine.
He teaches courses that introduce students to Slavic literatures and cultures, allow them to read prolific writers in the original and in translation, discuss and write subtly about complexities of the social and cultural life in Russia, the Soviet Union, Poland, and Ukraine in the 19th–21st centuries, while also paying attention to relevant interdisciplinary approaches, social and historical aspects of culture.