December 12, 2017

Spring 2015 List of Events

MONDAY, 04/27/15, 10:00 a.m., NEW CABELL 236

“Western Appeasement, Moscow, and Eastern Europe from a Historical Perspective”

Andrzej Nowak, Jagiellonian University, Cracow

Professor Nowak is a leading Polish historian and public intellectual. He is the author of more than 30 book on Polish, Russian, and East European political and intellectual history.

Sponsored by the American Institute of Polish Culture and the Center for Russian, East European and Eurasian Studies.

For questions about this event, please contact Anna Kromin at



FRIDAY, 04/24/15, 2:30 p.m., NEW CABELL 236

“Do You See What I See?: Iconicity in Dostoevsky’s Fiction”

Dr. Katya Jordan, Virginia Tech

Stemming from the visual art of Eastern Orthodoxy, the principle of iconicity – the unity of the visible and the invisible, of the material and the spiritual – has yet to be fully examined in the context of Russian literary fiction. Using Valerii Lepakhin’s work on icon art and Fyodor Dostoevsky’s novel The Idiot as a prime example of iconic literature, I will show how iconicity is linked to questions of cultural identity and reader response.

Organized by the Slavic Department and sponsored by the Center for Russian, East European and Eurasian Studies.



FRIDAY, 04/24/15, 4:00 p.m., NAU 242

“Spies Like Us: Narrative Curiosity and Dostoevsky’s Demons”

Dr. Greta Matzner-Gore (USC)

Curiosity has taken hold of the provincial town in which Demons is set. Scandals are afoot and the townsfolk can’t wait to find out what will happen next: they peek out from behind window curtains, gawk at fires, and listen “with appetite” to rumors about the novel’s heroes. In this talk I explore the interconnections between the theme of “greedy curiosity” in the novel and its curiosity-provoking narrative form. I argue that Dostoevsky uses ominous foreshadowing and cliffhanger chapter endings to enmesh his readers in the “thirst for a little scandal” that so many of his characters display. Ultimately I examine some of the larger questions about the ethics of reading that Demons raises, asking how Dostoevsky draws us, his readers, into the dynamics of universal guilt and responsibility that his novels portray.

Cosponsored by the Center for Russian, East European and Eurasian Studies.


THURSDAY, 04/23/15, 8 p.m., OLD CABELL HALL

UVa Klezmer Ensemble Spring Concert
featuring guests musicians Daniel Kahn and Jake Shulman-Ment from Painted Bird

The Painted Bird has released four albums to date, of which “Lost Causes” was awarded the prestigious German Record Critics’ Prize. Kahn’s songs address political issues and Jewish social movements such as the Bund while accompanied with klezmer, punk and folk melodies.

“An absolute must for lovers of unusual, intelligent, challenging, exciting folk music and a blast at every instant.” -Klaus Halama, Sound & Image.

The residency is a collaboration between the McIntire Department of Music, Center for Russian, East European and Eurasian Studies, Jewish Studies Program, James Dunton Gift, Center for German Studies, Department of Germanic Languages and Literatures, Department of Drama, and Creative Writing Program

Tickets are $10/ $5 for students/ free for UVa students who reserve in advance
For tickets:
For more information visit:



WEDNESDAY, 04/22/15, 12:00-1:30 p.m., NAU 342

“Yiddishland in Berlin: Subversive Traditions for a Radical Contemporary Discourse”

Daniel Kahn

Light refreshments will be served. Free and open to the public. Click here for the full residency schedule.

Co-sponsored by: Jewish Studies Program, Center for Russian, East European and Eurasian Studies, Center for German Studies, Department of German Languages and Literatures, Drama Department, Creative Writing Program, James Dunton Gift (Jazz Performance Program).


MONDAY, 04/20/15, 2:00 p.m, MAURY 115

“Found in Translation?: On the Difficulties of Rendering Isaac Babel into German”

Dr. Bettina Kaibach and Dr. Urs Heftrich, University of Heidelberg

Sponsored by the UVA Center for Russian, East European, and Eurasian Studies and the Department of Slavic Languages and Literatures.



MONDAY, 04/20/15, 5:00 p.m, NEW CABELL 236

“Vasily Grossman on Auschwitz and Hiroshima”

Dr. Bettina Kaibach, University of Heidelberg

Sponsored by the UVA Center for Russian, East European, and Eurasian Studies and the Department of Slavic Languages and Literatures.



SUNDAY, 04/19/15, 11:00 a.m.-2:00 p.m., OLD CABELL HALL 107

Klezmer workshop with Daniel Kahn and Jake Shulman-Ment

Co-sponsored by: Jewish Studies Program, Center for Russian, East European and Eurasian Studies, Center for German Studies, Department of German Languages and Literatures, Drama Department, Creative Writing Program, James Dunton Gift (Jazz Performance Program).

Click here for the full residency schedule.


THURSDAY, 04/09/15, 2 p.m., MAURY 209

A Lecture by His Excellency Elin Suleymanov, Ambassador of the Republic of Azerbaijan to the USA

Join us in learning more about Azerbaijan’s domestic and foreign policies and taste delicious authentic sweets.

Sponsored by the Center for Russian, East European and Eurasian Studies.

For questions about this event, please contact Narmin Huseynova at



WEDNESDAY, 04/01/15, 4 p.m., GARRETT HALL

“The Politics of Culture in Putin’s Russia”

Peter Pomerantsev

There are many possible futures in the 21st century—possibly none more potent and strange than what’s brewing in contemporary Russia. Vladimir Putin’s society of the spectacle, in which the idea of objective truth has been obliterated, may be the first truly postmodern society. Just as Russia took the supposedly liberationist philosophy of Marxism to its totalitarian extreme, is it now doing the same with postmodernism? Join journalist and filmmaker Peter Pomerantsev, author of the recent Nothing Is True and Everything Is Possible: The Surreal Heart of the New Russia, as he explores some of the odder precincts of Putin’s authoritarian wonderland. Copies of the author’s book will be on sale at the reception following the talk and questions. Visit the Institute for Advanced Studies in Culture website for more info.

Co-sponsored by the Institute for Advanced Studies in Culture, Frank Batten School of Leadership and Public Policy, and Center for Russian, East European and Eurasian Studies.


March 26-28, 2015 8:30 a.m.-6:00 p.m.

Centrifugal Forces: Reading Russia’s Regional Identities and Initiatives

South Meeting Room, Newcomb Hall
University of Virginia, Charlottesville, VA

Understanding identity in Russia’s regions advances our understanding of Russia as a whole. While the 2012 trial of the feminist punk group “Pussy Riot” and recurrent election protests thrust Moscow into the headlines, and the Sochi Olympics and the Ukrainian conflict conveyed Putin’s bid for international influence, the rest of Russia often seems mute, until suddenly unrest breaks out. The presentations at “Centrifugal Forces” resist traditional “center-oriented” perceptions of Russia. The goals of the conference are to probe action and self-articulation beyond the capital and to help the academic community, the American public, and US policymakers form a three-dimensional view of contemporary Russia and its human wealth. An international array of speakers from many disciplines will give voice to viewpoints from the regions, bringing to light exciting cultural, economic, and political initiatives. This conference is free and open to the UVA community and the public.

The proceedings of the conference will be broadcasted as a free online streaming event. Please find instructions to access the stream here.

A PDF version of the instructions with screen caps of each step is available for download at the bottom of the page. If you are interested in participating in the live stream, it is recommended that you test the instructions at least a day in advance to configure the necessary settings on Java. Updates regarding the conference will be posted on the official Twitter account for the event, @RussiasRegions. We welcome and encourage the participation of diverse online audiences. While watching the live stream, you can direct questions to the panelists via Twitter (@RussiasRegions), or email at <>. Throughout the event, a team of graduate students will be monitoring the Twitter and email accounts to communicate your questions to the associated speakers.



For registration information and directions to Newcomb Hall, please visit the conference website.


TUESDAY, 03/24/15, 5 p.m., CLARK 108

“Survivors into Minorities: Armenians in Post-genocide Turkey”

Lerna Ekmekcioglu, Associate Professor of History, MIT


Vigen Guroian, Religious Studies
Shankar Nair, Religious Studies
Jeffrey Rossman, History
Joshua White, History
Elizabeth Thompson, History

Sponsored by CREEES, Office of the Dean of Arts and Sciences, and the History Department. 
For questions about this event, please contact


MONDAY, 03/16/15, 6 p.m., NEW CABELL 323

“We All Came Out of Gogol’s Overcoat”

Talk by Julian Connolly, Department of Slavic Languages and Literatures

Gogol Ganguli is named for his father’s favorite Russian author. Learn more about Nikolai Gogol and his influence in UVa professor Julian Connolly’s lecture.

For questions about this event, please contact


TUESDAY, 03/03/15, 5:00 p.m.-7:00 p.m., Minor 125

A conversation on Culture and Politics

with Tatyana Tolstaya

Leading Russian Writer, Public Intellectual, Television Personality

Come join us for a lecture and discussion on culture and politics with Tatyana Nikitichna Tolstaya, one of Russia’s most prominent writers.

Tatyana Tolstaya debuted in print in 1983.  She has gone on to become one of her country’s most distinguished writers and intellectuals, producing, along with essays in journals, some of the most admired fiction of her generation, including the novel Кысь (The Slynx), which came out in 2000.  Since 1990, Tolstaya has lived on and off in the US, occasionally teaching at American universities, writing fiction, and turning out pointed cultural commentaries on life both in Russia and the US.  Her work has appeared in leading journals both at home and the West, including the New York Review of Books, the New Yorker, and the Times Literary Supplement. In 2001, she won the Triumph Prize, given to distinguished Russians in a variety of cultural fields.  In 2002 she became co-host of the TV interview program “Школа злословия” (“School for Scandal”).  

Sponsored by the Department of Slavic Languages and Literatures and by the Center for Russian, East European, and Eurasian Studies.

For questions about this event, please contact David Herman (


FRIDAY, 02/06/15, 2:00 pm, MONROE HALL 114

“Epic Film as a Tool of Hard & Soft Power During the Cold War”


Associate Professor of Russian Studies, William and Mary College

During the Cold War, the USSR and the U.S. imagined their ideological confrontation as a race. On the global film market, the USSR tried to compete with Hollywood films by producing big budget pictures that would match Hollywood blockbusters in technology, entertainment appeal, and cultural authority. These Soviet “prestige productions” pursued several, at times, conflicting goals. While Soviet cultural producers wanted these prestige films to generate profit, their primary agenda was to integrate Soviet film industry into global film markets and to “sell” Soviet socialism as a viable alternative to market capitalism. During the Cold War, Soviet studios invested the greatest amount of resources into two film projects: an adaptation of Leo Tolstoy’s War and Peace and a WWII epic initially titled Liberation of Europe. Drawing on Bakhtin’s theory of discourse, I examine the history of these epic films’ production and distribution as the process of articulating a distinct cinematic genre, and this genre’s importance in the present day Russian film production.

Sponsored by the Slavic Department. Co-sponsored by CREEES.

For questions about this event, please contact Anna Kromin (

Fall 2014 List of Events


“The Republic of Georgia: Trying to Become a Normal Democratic State”


•Chair of the Georgian Parliamentary Committee for Foreign Affairs (2012-present)

•Minister of Foreign Affairs, Republic of Georgia (2003-2004)

•Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of Georgia to USA, Canada, and Mexico (1994-2002)

Sponsored by the Center for Russian, East European and Eurasian Studies (CREEES), the School of Law, the Miller Center of Public Affairs, the Wilson Department of Politics, the Department of Slavic Languages and Literatures, and the Corcoran Department of History.

Reception to follow.


For questions about this event, please contact


Dimitri Simes talk, “The Putin Challenge: Fears and Facts,” scheduled for Monday, October 27, 7 P.M., has been canceled.

Please accept our apologies for any inconvenience.


WEDNESDAY, 10/29/14, 1:15 pm, NAU 342

“Beyond Socialist Realism: Rethinking Art and Politics in the Soviet Bloc”

Dr. Kyrill Kunakhovich, Dept. of History, William and Mary College

During the 1960s, artists across the Soviet Bloc abandoned Socialist Realism in favor of abstraction, expressionism, and pop art. Their change in style is often seen as a form of political protest, but in many cases it was enabled and encouraged by official cultural policy. Focusing on two neighboring countries, Poland and East Germany, this talk examines how communist reforms transformed East European cultures, often in parallel ways. It also shows how those cultures, in turn, influenced political practices and ideals – and ultimately helped destabilize the Soviet Bloc. 

Kyrill Kunakhovich is a Mellon Faculty Fellow in European History at the College of William & Mary. His research explores cultural policy, artistic exchange, and communist politics in the Soviet Bloc. Kyrill is the co-editor of The Global 1989: Transcontinental Connections in a Revolutionary World, which is due to appear next year. His current project, entitled Culture for the People, examines the link between art and politics in two of Eastern Europe’s major cities: Krakow in Poland and Leipzig in (East) Germany. 

Bag lunches will be provided.

Sponsored by CREEES as part of the UVa Polish Lecture Series. Co-sponsored by the Slavic, History, German, and Art History departments.

For questions about this event, please contact



THURSDAY, 9/18/14, 5:00 pm, NEW CABELL 299A

“The Russian Flagship: Teaching Future ‘Global Professionals’ and Learning from Our Students”

Karen Evans-Romaine, Professor of Slavic Languages and Literature, Director of Russian Flagship Center, University of Wisconsin-Madison

The Language Flagship Program is designed to prepare the “next generation of global professionals in the United States” through a combination of intensive classroom learning, individualized and small-group tutorials, optional residential learning, cultural learning through on-campus and community engagement, and study abroad, all at the undergraduate level. Students in the four Russian Flagship  Programs at four quite different campuses have been remarkably successful in achieving the goals of linguistic and cultural proficiency. This presentation will address how we approach intensive learning for Russian Flagship undergraduates of all majors at the University of Wisconsin –  Madison, how our graduate students benefit, and how Flagship principles can be applied to other language programs.

This presentation is part of IWL Speaker Series: Developing Proficiency in Global Contexts


TUESDAY, 8/26/14, 6:30 pm, WILSON 402

Talk by Russian Ambassador Sergey Ivanovich Kislyak

Online registration is required at

The University of Virginia Center for Politics in partnership with the Center for Global Inquiry and Innovation and the Center for Russian, Eastern European and Eurasian Studies will host a public event featuring His Excellency Sergey Ivanovich Kislyak, the current Russian Federation Ambassador to the United States. Ambassador Kislyak will speak regarding the relationship between the U.S. and Russia and answer questions of the audience.

Ambassador Kislyak became Ambassador of the Russian Federation to the United States on September 16, 2009. He previously served as Russia’s Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs, Ambassador to Belgium, and Representative to NATO in Brussels. In addition, he held high positions in the Russian Ministry of Foreign Affairs’ Department of Security Affairs and Disarmament, Department of International Scientific and Technical Cooperation, and the Department of International Organizations.

This event is free and open to the public.

For more information contact Glenn Crossman at or (434) 243-3540.



CONFERENCE: Centrifugal Forces: Reading Russia’s Regional Identities and Initiatives, March 26-28, 2015

Ambassador John Davis: The 1989 Roundtable Talks and Solidarność 25 Years Later

Watch this presentation below:

Ambassador John R. Davis was Chief of Mission of the U.S. Embassy in Warsaw from 1983 to 1990. He and his wife, Helen, were enthusiastic supporters of Solidarity and the Roundtable process of 1989 as well as the peaceful regime change which followed. A graduate of UCLA and Harvard, he was a Foreign Service Officer for 39 years, serving in Warsaw for a total of 13 years over three decades, as well as Djakarta, Rome, Milan, Sydney, and Bucharest. He received the Department of State’s Distinguished Service Award in 1991 for his work in Poland. After a year as Diplomat-in-Residence at Yale, he was appointed U.S. Ambassador to Romania in 1992. He retired in 1994.

Sponsored by CREEES and the American Institute of Polish Culture


Spring 2014 Events

THURSDAY, 2/20/14, 5:00 pm, MONROE 122

“A Refining Palette: Children’s Book Illustration in Poland, 1960s-1970s”

Beth Holmgren, Professor of Slavic and Eurasian Studies, Duke University

Sponsored by the CREEES Polish Lecture Series.



THURSDAY, 3/27/14, 5:00 pm, MONROE 122

“Ugly Betty on Red Square: Global Formats and Russian Television”

Elena Prokhorova, Associate Professor of Russian Studies, College of William and Mary

Sponsored by CREEES.



THURSDAY, 3/27/14, 8:00 pm, OLD CABELL HALL

CONCERT: UVa Klezmer Ensemble

Special guest: Alan Bern

Organized by the Music Department

Co-sponsored by the Jewish Studies Program | Center for Russian, East European and Eurasian Studies

Office of the Vice Provost for the Arts | James Dunton Gift (Jazz Performance Program)



THURSDAY, 4/3/14, 5:00 pm, MONROE 122

“The Polish Roundtable of 1989 After 25 Years — Was It A Viable Model?”

Ambassador John Davis, Former U.S. Ambassador to Poland

Watch this presentation here.

Sponsored by CREEES.

Fall 2013 Events

THURSDAY, 9/19/13, 5:00 pm, NAU 342

“Between Polish Catholicism and Global Catholicism: Blurring the Boundaries of Church, State, and Nation in a Cold War World”

Piotr Kosicki, Assistant Professor of History, University of Maryland

Sponsored by UVA’s Center for Russian, East European and Eurasian Studies



FRIDAY, 10/25/13, 4:30 pm, MONROE 118

“Transposing the ‘Great Game’ to the Sphere of Culture: Soviet-Indian Cultural Interactions in the 1920s” 

Katerina Clark, Professor of Comparative Literature and of Slavic Languages and Literatures at Yale University

Sponsored by UVA’s Center for Russian, East European and Eurasian Studies



SATURDAY, 10/26/13, 10:00 am, CAMPBELL 153

Symposium: “In the Shadow of Stalin: African American Artists and Intellectuals in Soviet Russia”

Organized by The Fralin Museum of Art and the U.Va. Department of Slavic Languages and Literatures, the symposium will include a diverse group of scholars drawn from Slavic studies, AfricanAmerican studies, literature, history, film studies, and art history. Click here for more information and a full description on The Fralin Museum website.

UVA Sponsors: Office of the Dean, School of Arts and Sciences; Carter G. Woodson Institute for African-American and African Studies; Center for Global Studies; Corcoran Department of History; Center for Russian, East European and Eurasian Studies; Department of English; Fralin Museum of Art; Institute of the Humanities and Global Cultures; McIntire Department of Art; Department of Slavic Languages and Literatures



MONDAY, 10/28/13, 5:00 pm,  Harrison Institute

Lecture by Aleksandar Hemon, Bosnian-American writer

Born in Bosnia and emigrating during the war in the former Yugoslavia, Hemon came to the United States in the early nineties and began publishing fiction soon after his arrival. He has often contributed to The New Yorker, as well as The Paris Review, The New York Times and The New Republic.

Organized by the Institute of the Humanities and Global Cultures, co-sponsored by CREEES



Andy Statman Trio Residency

Andy Statman Trio Concert, Tuesday, November 5th, 8 pm, Old Cabell Hall

Demonstration, Wednesday, November 6th, 10 am, Eunoia (1500 JPA)

Jewish Studies Colloquim with Andy Statman, Wednesday, November 6th, 5pm, Wilson 301

Light refreshments will be served


Co-sponsored by UVA Arts Council, Jewish Studies Program, Center for Russian, East European and Eurasian Studies, James Dunton Gift (Jazz Performance Program), Department of Religious Studies, American Studies Program, Brody Center (Hillel), Charlottesville Jazz Society



THURSDAY, 11/14/13, 11:00 am – 1:00 pm,  NEWCOMB 480

“Comedies of the Flesh: Sexual Humour in Nabokov”

Paul Grant, Associate Professor, English, Division of Arts, Memorial University of Newfoundland

Sponsored by UVA’s Department of Slavic Languages and Literatures and Center for Russian, East European and Eurasian Studies



MONDAY, 11/25/13, 4:00 pm,  COCKE 115

Lecture by Maria Ivanova (PhD, Philosophy, Moscow State University): “Ars Dissimulandi The Early Modern Ruthenian Art of Dissimulation in Byzantine Perspective.”  

A lecture on the theory and practice of dissimulation as a rhetorical technique in what is now Ukraine, Belarus, Lithuania, and Poland in the 16th and 17th centuries.

Sponsored by UVA’s Department of Slavic Languages and Literatures and Center for Russian, East European and Eurasian Studies

Spring 2013 Events

THURSDAY, 4/18/13, 7:00-9:00pm, NAU 101

“ROUNDTABLE:  Understanding the U.S. Relationship with Russia, the Caucasus, and Central Asia”

Allen C. Lynch, Professor of Politics, University of Virginia (Moderator)

Richard Miles, U.S. Ambassador to Azerbaijan (1992-93), Bulgaria (1999-2002), and Georgia (2002-05)

Dr. Chris Mizelle, Director for Russia, National Security Council (2011-12)

Eugene Rumer, National Information Officer for Russia/Eurasia, DNI

Lynne Tracy, Deputy Assistant Secretary for Central Asia, U.S. State Department

(Made possible by a generous grant from The Jefferson Trust)

THURSDAY, 4/25/13, 8:00-10:00pm OLD CABELL HALL

CONCERT: UVa Klezmer Ensemble

Special guests: Joshua Horowitz and Cookie Segelstein of Veretski Pass and Budowitz

(Organized and co-sponsored by the Music Department)

For questions about CREEES-organized events, contact For questions about Slavic Department events, contact For questions about Music Department events, contact

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