Jonathan Raspe is a Ph.D. candidate in Russian, East European, and Eurasian history. His dissertation is a social, political, and cultural history of heavy industry in the Soviet Union’s national republics after the Second World War. Focusing on the Karaganda Iron and Steel Works in Kazakhstan and the Minsk Tractor Works in Belarus, the dissertation shows how the Soviet emphasis on industry shaped the face of the republics. It argues that industrialization anchored Soviet power in the former Eurasian borderlands by recruiting from the titular population, bringing in Russian-speaking workers from other parts of the country, producing new technocratic elites, and Sovietizing national identity. At the same time, the project explores how the Soviet Union’s federal structure influenced Soviet economic development more generally as republican authorities successfully lobbied their domestic industries.
Raspe has previously conducted research on national identity and ethnic relations in the Soviet Union during the interwar period. His article on the Soviet indigenization policy in Belarus appeared in the Jahrbücher für Geschichte Osteuropas. A second paper on Jewish national autonomy in 1920s Soviet Ukraine has been published in Nationalities Papers. Before coming to Princeton, he received an MPhil in Russian and East European Studies with Distinction from St Antony’s College, University of Oxford, and a BA in History and Economics from the Humboldt University of Berlin. His research has been supported by the Gerda Henkel Foundation, the Association for Slavic, East European, and Eurasian Studies (ASEEES), and the German Academic Exchange Service (DAAD)