Current Visiting Scholars


Feruza Aripova is a PhD Candidate in World History at Northeastern University, Boston, MA. Her research primarily focuses on gender and sexual politics in late Soviet and post-Soviet era. Her doctoral dissertation-in-progress, tentatively titled, Mapping Same-Sex Desire in Post-Soviet Space: Deconstructing the Soviet Legacy deals with the Soviet legacy of silencing same-sex desire by subjecting it to criminal or pathological discourses. Moreover, it seeks to explore and map the impact of historical and legal perceptions of same-sex desire on contemporary state policies and public opinion in the former Soviet republics. Feruza completed her M.A. in Coexistence and Conflict from Brandeis University in 2010. She also received her B.A. in Theological Studies from LCC International University, Lithuania in 2008 and another B.A. in English from the Uzbek State World Languages University, Uzbekistan in 2000.



Misha Avrekh is currently writing a book on statistics, state, and literary genres. He also occasionally writes on statistics; noise; and fatherhood. He received his PhD in Comparative Literature from Yale University in 2014.







Maxim Matusevich (Ph.D. University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign) is a Professor of History at Seton Hall University where he also directs an interdisciplinary program in Russian and East European Studies. Maxim has published extensively on the history of the Cold War in Africa and the history of contacts between Africa and Russia/Soviet Union. His new book project (under contract with Indiana University Press) looks at the Soviet journeys of African American intellectuals and radicals who traveled to and resided in the USSR prior to and after the Second World War.


Alexander Nakhimovsky received an MA in mathematics from Leningrad University (1972) and a PhD in linguistics from Cornell (1979) with a graduate minor in computer science. After a career in linguistics, 1977-85, he taught computer science at Colgate from 1985 to 2013. He is the author of several books and articles (jointly with Tom Myers) on XML programming, Web applications, Web services, and the Semantic Web. He has also published on linguistics, and since 2009 has been Director of Colgate’s Linguistics Program. Since 2013, all his research has been on the history of the Russian language in the 20th century.


DSC_0119_RTThomas Nemeth received his PhD from the University of Louvain, Belgium in 1977, after which he did post-doctoral work in Australia and in Germany. He translated Gustav Shpet’s Iavlenie i smysl into English as well as published several articles on Husserlian phenomenology in Russia. His recent work is on the reception of Kant in Imperial Russia, resulting in a book-length study that is presently under review. He has contributed to the Routledge Encyclopedia of Philosophy as well as the Internet Encyclopedia of Philosophy, including the entry there on “Russian Philosophy” and is presently an active member of the editorial board of the Russian journal Solov’evskie Issledovaniya/Solovyov Studies. As part of his current project, Nemeth in 2014 published a study of Solovyov’s early life and thought up to 1881 and in 2015 a critical translation of Solovyov’s Opravdanie dobra. He is presently engaged with Solovyov’s “return” to philosophy in the 1890s.

Brigid O’Keeffe is an Associate Professor of History at Brooklyn College (CUNY) and the author of New Soviet GypsiesNationality, Performance, and Selfhood in the Early Soviet Union (University of Toronto Press, 2013). She is currently at work on a second book, Comrades Without Borders: Esperanto and the Promise of Internationalism in Late Imperial and Early Soviet Russia.  In 2017-2018, she is a faculty fellow at the Ethyle R. Wolfe Institute for the Humanities.  She has previously held a postdoctoral fellowship at the Havighurst Center for Russian and Post-Soviet Studies at Miami University, a Mrs. Giles Whiting Foundation Fellowship for Outstanding Teaching in the Humanities, and a Visiting Research Fellowship with the Reluctant Internationalists Project Team at Birkbeck College, University of London.



Maria Vinogradova has recently defended her doctoral dissertation at the Department of Cinema Studies of New York University. The project investigates the history of state-sponsored amateur filmmaking in the Soviet Union, rediscovering hundreds of rare films made by collectives attached to factories, universities, palaces of culture and other organizations. In 2015-2016 this work was supported by an ACLS/Mellon Dissertation Completion Grant. Prior her doctoral study at New York University Maria studied journalism and photography at St.Petersburg State University, and, with support from a Fulbright fellowship, completed a master’s degree in art history at Pratt Institute in 2006 – 2008. Her primary research interests encompass the history and culture of minor cinema practices, especially in the Soviet and other socialist contexts. In addition to publishing essays on the subject, she has given public talks and curated screenings of Soviet amateur and non-theatrical films in New York, Amsterdam, Helsinki, Frankfurt and St.Petersburg.


Anna Whittington is a Ph.D. Candidate at the University of Michigan. Her dissertation, “Forging Soviet Citizens: Ideology, Identity, and Stability in the Soviet Union, 1930-1991,” explores patriotism, citizenship, and identity. Her research considers the development of Soviet identity in the lead-up to World War II and its evolution in the decades that follow. Based on research conducted across the former Soviet Union, including Russia, Ukraine, and Central Asia, her work sheds light not only on how citizenship as an institution was established, cultivated, and practiced, but also on how it contributed to the longevity of the Soviet state.


Milyausha Zakirova is an independent scholar currently working on two related projects. The first focuses on the changing images of the Russian city that emerged from discussions about urbanization in the twentieth century. The second project analyzes the specifics of the urban local community in the Russian context. Milyausha received a B.A. in Sociology at Kazan State University and an MA from the European University in St. Petersburg, where she continued the graduate program working on her dissertation that examined the mobilization of local communities during the defense of common territory. Her research has been supported by the Heinrich Böll Foundation. She has worked in collective projects on urban poverty, family care and Soviet youth. Milyausha has presented her research in Russia, Hungary, Ukraine, Germany and the United States.