Catriona Kelly approaches “period zapoya” through cinema



On May 13, 2016, the NYU Jordan Center for the Advanced Study of Russia and the Tisch School of the Arts welcomed Catriona Kelly for the last colloquium of the Spring 2016 semester, entitled “Period zapoya: Alcohol and Cinema during the Brezhnev Era.” Kelly, who is a Professor of Russian at the University of Oxford and a Fellow of the British Academy, was introduced by Eliot Borenstein, Professor of Russian and Slavic Studies at New York University. The former president of Association for Slavic, East European, and Eurasian Studies (ASEEES) and a prolific writer, Kelly spoke briefly about her ongoing project – a book on the Soviet cine underground, a history of film in Leningrad during the post-Stalin era.

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Evgeny Dobrenko examines the “Cold War” through socialist realist ideology



On April 15, 2016, the NYU Jordan Center for the Advanced Study of Russia welcomed Evgeny Dobrenko for a lecture entitled “Soviet Cold War Imagination.” Dobrenko, head of the department of Russian and Slavonic Studies at the University of Sheffield and an April Fellow at the Jordan Center, was introduced by Rossen Djagalov, Professor of Russian and Slavic Studies at NYU. His presentation focused on the Stalinist years of the Cold War, as a unique period charting the transformation of the Soviet Union from outcast to superpower in the postwar bipolar world.

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Anindita Banerjee speaks on Aelita, Queen of Mars in Radiant Futures keynote speech



On April 8, 2016, the NYU Jordan Center for the Advanced Study of Russia hosted a conference entitled “Radiant Futures: Russian Fantasy and Science Fiction.” After the first panel, NYU Professor of Russian and Slavic Studies Eliot Borenstein introduced keynote speaker Anindita Banerjee. “If we think of our conference and our field in terms of science fiction, then she is Queen of Mars, our Aelita,” Borenstein said. Banerjee, a professor of comparative literature at Cornell University, centered her talk on Aelita, Queen of Mars, a 1924 Soviet silent film directed by Yakov Protazanov based on Alexei Tolstoy’s eponymous novel.

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“Radiant Futures” conference brings Soviet science fiction and fantasy out of the periphery



On April 8, 2016, the NYU Jordan Center for the Advanced Study of Russia hosted a conference entitled “Radiant Futures: Russian Fantasy and Science Fiction.” The conference was convened by Eliot Borenstein, Professor of Russian and Slavic Studies and Collegiate Professor at New York University, and it featured a varied lineup of speakers from the literary field. In his introduction, Borenstein said that the idea behind the conference was to gather a group of people who have been thinking about nauchnaya fantastika (scientific fantasy) from a scholarly and non-scholarly perspective, particularly given the peripheral role this genre usually plays in the academic context.

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Yanni Kotsonis shares the value of babushka stories at NESEEES


Yanni Kotsonis. Babushka and the Sewing Machine

On April 2, 2016, the NYU Jordan Center for the Advanced Study of Russia hosted the 37th Annual Meeting of the North East Slavic, East European and Eurasian Conference (NESEEES, a regional conference of ASEEES). Panel discussions were held throughout the day, with scholars at the junior and senior level, as well as graduate and undergraduate students, to present their work. After being introduced by the Executive Director of NESEEES Susan Smith-Peter, NESEEES President and Jordan Center Director Yanni Kotsonis provided the keynote address, entitled “Babushka and the Sewing Machine, and Other Instructive Fails during My Travels in Russia.”

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Edward Cohn explores “prophylactic policing” in the Soviet Baltics



On April 1, 2015, the NYU Jordan Center for the Advanced Study of Russia welcomed Edward Cohn for a colloquium on “A Soviet Theory of Broken Windows: Policing and the KGB’s Struggle With the Baltic States.” Cohn, Associate Professor of History and chair of the Russian, Central, and Eastern European Studies concentration at Grinnell College, was introduced by Arturas Rozenas, Assistant Professor of Politics at NYU. The presentation and discussion focused on a paper that will become part of a larger research project on Soviet strategies of policing in the Baltics.

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Alfred J. Rieber approaches Soviet history through Stalin and the nationality question



On March 28, 2016, the NYU Jordan Center for the Advanced Study of Russia and the NYU Department of History welcomed Alfred J. Rieber from Central European University for a lecture on his recent book, “Stalin and the Struggle for Supremacy in Eurasia.” The event was introduced by Jordan Center Director Yanni Kotsonis and was followed with comments by Stephen Kotkin from Princeton University.

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Robert Crews revisits Afghan history in a global context


Afghanistan

On Wednesday, March 9, 2016, the NYU Jordan Center for the Advanced Study of Russia welcomed Robert Crews, Associate Professor of History and Director of the Abbasi Program in Islamic Studies at Stanford University for a book talk devoted to his recent book, Afghan Modern: The History of a Global Nation. The event focused on Afghan encounters with Russia, the USSR, and Central Asia and explored Afghanistan’s engagement with the global circulation of modern politics.

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Music expert Michael Danilin presents the Russian rock bands of the 1980s



On February 12, 2016, the NYU Jordan Center for the Advanced Study of Russia welcomed Michael (Misha) Danilin from the NYU Department of Russian and Slavic Studies to speak on the “Golden Age of Russian Rock.” Rossen Djagalov, Assistant Professor of Russian and Slavic Studies at NYU, introduced Danilin highlighting his eclecticism and versatility. Apart from being a professor of Russian language at NYU, Danilin is the lead singer of Interzona, the initiator of a number of music projects, and a music expert currently compiling a history of the Russian rock movement. The speaker began his presentation with a plea to the audience, inviting them to think about how to best define Russian rock, what makes it distinguishable from other rock music and other Russian genres, and how we can address Russian rock in the 21st century.

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American Committee for East-West Accord urges debate on U.S.-Russian relations



On November 23, 2015, the NYU Jordan Center for the Advanced Study of Russia, in collaboration with the Carnegie Council for Ethics in International Affairs, hosted a panel discussion organized by the recently established the American Committee for East-West Accord. The event, titled “U.S.-Russian Conflict From Ukraine to Syria: Did U.S. Policy Contribute to It?” featured presentations by five of the committee’s founding members: Bill Bradley, a 1964 Olympic Gold Medalist in basketball and former U.S. senator; Stephen F. Cohen, Professor Emeritus of Russian Studies, History and Politics at New York University; Jack F. Matlock, Jr., U.S. ambassador to the Soviet Union from 1987 to 1991; John Pepper, former Chairman and CEO of Procter & Gamble; and William J. vanden Heuvel, American ambassador to the United Nations under U.S. President Jimmy Carter.

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