Graduate Student Conference on the Late Soviet Union

The Davis Center for Russian and Eurasian Studies

Harvard University

April 30, 2021

9am – 3pm EST (virtual)

The study of the late Soviet Union has increasingly been the subject of nuanced scholarship. As opposed to previously existing studies—which often focused on the era’s stagnation, decline, and disappointment—newer work has emphasized what might be considered the “positive” or “productive” sides of the late Soviet Union. In this new approach, scholars tend to explore subjective experiences rather than focusing on the somewhat one-dimensional failures of the era. This conference aims to further complicate conventionally-held ideas about the late Soviet Union by looking at how exactly the post-Stalinist environment informed social practices and individual lives.

We invite paper proposals from graduate students (PhD, MA) at any stage working on a topic related to the history of the late Soviet Union (1953-1991). This conference allows graduate students to present their original and ongoing work in a professional environment, and to receive feedback from peers and experts within the field. We also extend an invitation to undergraduate students who have begun rigorous independent research related to the late Soviet Union.

Proposals may include topics related to the political, cultural, social, environmental, or economic history of the Soviet Union between 1953-1991.

Please submit a 300-word proposal by February 19. Submissions must include a working title and brief description of the paper’s central argument. Please include on the cover page the scholar’s full name, institutional affiliation, graduate program of study, and current year in that program.

Notification of acceptance will be no later than March 12, 2021. If accepted, participants must submit their registration form and paper no later than April 9, 2021.

Please send proposals and questions to Danielle Leavitt-Quist and Anna Ivanova at and Info: 

Please send proposals and questions to Danielle Leavitt-Quist and Anna Ivanova at and Email:

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