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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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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Soviet historian Sheila Fitzpatrick speaks on collective leadership after Stalin’s death


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On November 23, 2015, the NYU Jordan Center for the Advanced Study of Russia welcomed historian Sheila Fitzpatrick, Professor at the University of Sydney and Distinguished Service Professor Emerita of the University of Chicago. Fitzpatrick, who has worked since the 1970s in the Soviet field, presented her research on “The Team Without Stalin: ‘Collective Leadership’ 1953-7.” Introducing the speaker, Jordan Center Director Yanni Kotsonis praised Fitzpatrick’s comprehensive scholarship. “No one else has mastered the Soviet field as Sheila Fitzpatrick,” Kotsonis said. She “singlehandedly transformed the way we did Soviet history because first of all, she treated it as history, and second of all, she […] put forth the proposition—which was very controversial in the middle of the Cold War—that the Soviet Union was a country” that was comparable to other countries.


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Anna Arutunyan explains the Putin mystique



On Nov. 5 journalist and author Anna Arutunyan joined Russia expert and Clinical Professor of Global Affairs at the NYU’s Center for Global Affairs Mark Galeotti in conversation for an event at the School of Professional Studies. The event, hosted in collaboration with the Jordan Center, focused on the figure of president Vladimir Putin and was the second installment of Revisiting Russia, a three-part series of talks aimed at discussing Russia’s future and its place in the world.


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Experts discuss Russian law and its trajectories



On October 16, 2014, the Jordan Center welcomed several scholars to participate in a panel, entitled Russia’s Legal Trajectories: Law in Action and Question, 1830 to 2014. In her introductory remarks, Professor of History at NYU Jane Burbank stated that there are many perplexing ideas about law and Russia. Some commentators think that the rule of law is incompatible with autocratic or Communist governments; for them Russian law is an oxymoron. Yet, Burbank remarked, law has been important to government in Russia for many centuries. In addition, for the last 10 year or so many scholars have been rigorously scrutinizing the subject. This panel was meant to give its audience “a taste of new legal history” in four different presentations about law from the early 19th century, through the legal reforms of 1864, to the current day.


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Putin’s Birthday: What to Get for the Man Who’s Grabbed Everything?



“In an amazing fashion, the events of ancient tales of the mythological hero, Heracles, can be adapted to here and now, when the three-headed Cerberus evokes USA, when the defeat of the Stymphalian birds is putting the stop to aerial bombing in Syria, and the cleaning of the Augean stables is the fight against corruption.”


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Stephen Norris discusses Boris Efimov and Soviet cartoons


On October 10, 2014, the Jordan Center welcomed Stephen Norris, a professor of history at the Havighurst Center for Russian and Post-Soviet Studies at Miami University of Ohio, to speak about his book project, entitled “Communist Cartoonist: Boris Efimov.” Norris’s talk was second in the Jordan Center’s Colloquium Series, which, as Director Yanni Kotsonis explained, encourages scholars to present their ongoing projects in order to receive feedback and comments from the audience.


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Stephen Kotkin on Stalin: Geopolitics, Ideas, Power



Sept. 26, 2014, marked the first of the Distinguished Lecture series at the Jordan Center for the Advanced Study of Russia. As director Yanni Kotsonis pointed out, the lectures as well as the Center itself are meant to “protect conversations about Russia. If one wants to speak of Russia these days, you need protection; if one wants to speak against, you also need protection.” He added: “The only criterion here is intelligence.”


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Noncompetitive elections and dissent: Evidence from the USSR



Sept. 12 marked the opening of the Jordan Center’s Fall 2014 Colloquium Series with a presentation by Arturas Rozenas, Assistant Professor at the NYU Department of Politics, whose current research focuses on authoritarian states, electoral competitions and statistical methodology. Rozenas presented a paper on the nature of Soviet elections, which he had written several years ago and currently wishes to revive with newly gathered data from the KGB and Communist Party archives in Lithuania.


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