I study Russian, East European, and Soviet history. Before coming to Princeton, I received an MPhil in Russian and East European Studies with Distinction from St Antony’s College, University of Oxford, where I was a Dahrendorf Scholar. I also hold a BA in History and Economics from Humboldt University of Berlin and spent a term abroad at the Russian State University for the Humanities (RGGU) in Moscow.
My chief interests lie in questions of nationalism, identity, and ethnic relations. My current project explores post-war nation-building in Soviet Belarus: it analyzes how public discourses on economic performance were formative in creating a local identity that was both national and Soviet. In earlier work, I have grappled with the apparent failure of the Soviet nationalities policy of the 1920s. My master’s thesis examined how Soviet affirmative action in interwar Ukraine exacerbated ethnic conflict between Ukrainians and Jews. My bachelor’s thesis suggested that, contrary to prior research, in Belarus the early Bolshevik attempt at nation-building was suspended not for an excess but a lack of success. A paper based on my thesis has recently appeared in the peer-reviewed Jahrbücher für Geschichte Osteuropas.
History aside, I have taught German at a high school in Pinsk, Belarus, written for Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung, played Dolores Umbridge at the North Caucasus University of Stavropol, Russia, interned with the German embassy in Astana, Kazakhstan, and – most importantly – fulfilled children’s fondest dreams as a Very Important Sales Assistant at the Lego store in my hometown, Frankfurt am Main.