Jacyk Program Logo
About Program
Mission Statement
Coordinating Commitee
About Petro Jacyk
About Crees
Post Doctoral Fellowship
Visiting Scholars Program
Graduate Scholarships
Student Exchange
International Graduate Student Symposium
Calendar of Events
Audio Archive
Working Papers
Useful Links
Contact Us

Munk Centre


All events are free and open to the public, but registration is generally required. Registration links are provided below for each event.

EVENTS IN 2017-2018


Thursday, April 5, 4-6 pm

Steven Seegel (Professor of History, University of Northern Colorado): Map Men: Lives and Deaths of Geographers in Transnational East Central Europe

Chair: Dr. Ksenya Kiebuzinski (Co-Director of the Petro Jacyk Program for the Study of Ukraine; head of the Petro Jacyk Central and East European Resource Centre)

Conflicts over turf are geo-coded by grievance, particularly in Europe’s tumultuous borderland pasts of German-Polish, Polish-Ukrainian, Polish-Jewish, Ukrainian-Russian, Hungarian-Romanian, and Hungarian-Jewish relations. In tales of flawed “great men” and their selves, historians too conveniently reify categories of nationality, rationality, or modernity to psychologize group behavior by language and religion, instead of delving into the eccentric worlds of individuals and social contexts for generating maps. This lecture re-grounds maps as intersubjective human artefacts, colored in by relational patterns of everyday frustration and status-conscious anxiety, petty jealousy and human pride.

Where explanations fail, maps offer forensic clues: the obsessive passion for maps in matters of life and death, friendship and war, across borders and oceans from the 1870s to the 1950s. Looking at the mobile worlds of five “transnational Germans” who were also multilingual, Anglophile, and national-scientific geographers—Albrecht Penck (1858-1945) of Germany, Eugeniusz Romer (1871-1954) of Poland, Stepan Rudnyts’kyi (1877-1937) of Ukraine, Isaiah Bowman (1878-1950) of North America, Count Pál Teleki (1879-1941) of Hungary, he recreates the relationships of a generation of aspiring bourgeois experts. By retelling their lives and deaths, he looks at the history of borderland conflict and digs into the personal lives of men whose prejudices helped to shape the emergence of geography and cartography as modern sciences out of pre-1914 Ostmitteleuropa.

The lecture finally illustrates the ways in which today’s clickbait and functional grids depicted budding graphic projects on surreal and subjective terms. As maps are shipped around ever more dangerously as weapons, Seegel argues that they continue to define tensions of empire that are common to émigré trusteeships for mediating territorial conflict, as well as positions of privilege for a global technical intelligentsia’s multigenerational advancement.

Steven Seegel is professor of Russian and European history at the University of Northern Colorado. He is the author of Mapping Europe's Borderlands: Russian Cartography in the Age of Empire (University of Chicago Press, 2012), and Ukraine under Western Eyes: The Bohdan and Neonila Krawciw Ucrainica Map Collection (Harvard University Press, 2013). He has been a contributor to the fourth and fifth volumes of Chicago's international history of cartography series, and has translated over 300 entries from Russian and Polish for the US Holocaust Memorial Museum's Encyclopedia of Camps and Ghettos, 1933-1945, in multiple volumes, published jointly by Indiana University Press. He is also a former director at Harvard of the Ukrainian Research Institute's summer exchange program. His most recent book, Map Men: Transnational Lives and Deaths of Geographers in the Making of East Central Europe, is published by University of Chicago Press in April 2018.

Room 108N, Munk School of Global Affairs (1 Devonshire Place)

Click here to register for this event

Sponsored by the Petro Jacyk Program for the Study of Ukraine, the Centre for European, Russian, and Eurasian Studies, the John Yaremko Chair of Ukrainian Studies, and the Konstanty Reynert Chair in Polish History.

Thursday, April 19, 7-9 pm

2018 Wolodymyr Dylynsky Memorial Lecture:

Marci Shore (Associate Professor of History, Yale University): The Ukrainian Night: An Intimate History of Revolution

Chair: Roman Senkus (Senior Editor, Canadian Institute of Ukrainian Studies, University of Alberta)

In the course of the Wolodymyr Dylynsky Memorial Lecture, Professor Shore will present her new book, the Ukrainian Night: An Intimate History of Revolution.

“This is a civilization that needs metaphysics,” Adam Michnik told Václav Havel in 2003. A decade later, on 21 November 2013, Ukrainian president Viktor Yanukovych unexpectedly reversed the course of his own stated foreign policy and declined to sign an association agreement with the European Union. Around 8 p.m. that day a thirty-two year-old Afghan-Ukrainian journalist, Mustafa Nayem, posted a note on his Facebook page: “Come on, let’s get serious. Who is ready to go out to the Maidan”—Kiev’s central square—“by midnight tonight? ‘Likes’ don’t count.” No one then knew that “likes don’t count”—a sentence that would have made no sense before Facebook—would bring about the return to metaphysics to Eastern Europe. While the world watched (or did not watch) the uprising on the Maidan as an episode in geopolitics, those in Kiev during the winter of 2013–14 lived the revolution as an existential transformation: the blurring of night and day, the loss of a sense of time, the sudden disappearance of fear, the imperative to make choices.

The book will be available for purchase at the event.

Marci Shore teaches European cultural and intellectual history. She received her M.A. from the University of Toronto in 1996 and her PhD from Stanford University in 2001. Before joining Yale’s history department, she was a postdoctoral fellow at Columbia University‘s Harriman Institute; an assistant professor of history and Jewish studies at Indiana University; and Jacob and Hilda Blaustein Visiting Assistant Professor of Judaic Studies at Yale. She is the author of The Taste of Ashes: The Afterlife of Totalitarianism in Eastern Europe (Crown, 2013), Caviar and Ashes: A Warsaw Generation’s Life and Death in Marxism, 1918-1968 (Yale University Press, 2006) and the translator of Michal Glowinski‘s Holocaust memoir The Black Seasons (Northwestern University Press, 2005).

Click here to register for this event

room 100A, Jackman Humanities Institute
170 St. George Street

Sponsored by the Canadian Institute of Ukrainian Studies at the University of Alberta (Toronto Office), the Petro Jacyk Program for the Study of Ukraine and the Centre for European, Russian, and Eurasian Studies.


Thursday, October 5, 4-6 pm

Ewa Michna (Jagellonian University): Identity Politics of Stateless Ethnic Groups. The Case of Carpatho-Rusyns and Silesians

Chair: Professor Paul Magocsi (John Yaremko Chair of Ukrainian Studies, University of Toronto)

Commentator: Professor Piotr Wrobel (Konstanty Reynert Chair of Polish History, University of Toronto)

The meaning of the struggle for recognition and identity politics or politics of difference in Central and Eastern European countries has gained significance after the political transformation of the nineties, with the appearance of demands for the emancipation of many ethnic groups aiming to recognize their differences and specificity of culture. The lecture will describe two of such groups: Silesians and Carpatho-Rusyns, for which the democratization of social life opened the way to fight for recognition by the states in which those groups live. The aim of the presentation is to reconstruct the strategies of the struggle for recognition and identity politics of Carpatho-Rusyns and Silesian activists in relation to the signalized by Thomas H. Eriksen universal “grammar of identity politics”. Simultaneously, basing on analysis of states policy towards aspirations of Silesians and Carpatho-Rusyns it will show the fundamental difficulties in achieving legal recognition and protection, which involve groups of unknown status, stateless minority, divided in terms of identity, whose right to emancipation is challenged by various social actors.

Ewa Michna PhD habil., is a sociologist associated professor at the Institute of American Studies and Polish Diaspora, Jagiellonian University, Cracow. Her research interests focus around ethnic and national minorities in Central and Eastern Europe, the struggle of minority communities for their recognition and the identity politics of ethnic leaders. Authors of  Łemkowie. Grupa etniczna czy naród?  (The Lemkos. An Ethnic Group or a Nation?),  Kwestie etniczno-narodowościowe na pograniczu Słowiańszczyzny wschodniej i zachodniej. Ruch rusiński na Słowacji. Ukrainie i w Polsce (Ethnic and  National  Issues in the Borderlands of Eastern and Western Slavic World. The Rusyn Movement in Slovakia, Ukraine and Poland).

Room 208N, Munk School of Global Affairs (1 Devonshire Place)

Register here

Sponsored by the Petro Jacyk Program for the Study of Ukraine, the John Yaremko Chair of Ukrainian Studies; the Centre for European, Russian, and Eurasian Studies, and the Konstanty Reynert Chair of Polish Studies.

Thursday, October 12, 5-7 pm

Mykola Riabchuk (Ukrainian Centre for Cultural Studies, Kyiv): "Hybrid Censorship During the "Hybrid War": Freedom of Speech and Expression in the Post-Euromaidan Ukraine

Chair: Lucan Way (Professor of Political Science, co-director of the Petro Jacyk Program

Within the past few years, the Ukrainian authorities have been heavily critisized by international watchdogs and independent observers for some legal steps and practical policies that allegedly curtail freedom of speech and access to information in the country. The government and its supporters argue, however, that the policies are justified by the actual situation of war waged by the neigboring Russia against Ukraine and have nothing to do with a censorship in a conventional sense but, rather, represents a defensive measure against the enemy’s propaganda, subversion, and provocative disinformation. The debate represents a partiular case of a broader controversy between the demand for unrestrained freedom of speech indispensable for modern democracy and the need of those very democracies to protect themselves from the rogue individials, groups, and regimes that increasingly learned how to weaponize media and (dis)information for their malevolent goals.

Mykola Riabchuk is a senior research fellow at the Ukrainian Center for Cultural Studies, in Kyiv, and co-founder and member of the editorial board of Krytyka, a leading Ukrainian intellectual magazine.

Room 208N, Munk School of Global Affairs (1 Devonshire Place)

Register here

Sponsored by the Petro Jacyk Program for the Study of Ukraine and the Centre for European, Russian, and Eurasian Studies.


Thursday, October 26, 4-6 pm

Mayhill Fowler (History Department, Stetson University): Beau Monde on Empire's Edge: State and Stage in Soviet Ukraine

Chair: Maxim Tarnawsky (Department of Slavic Languages and Literatures, University of Toronto)

During her talk, 2012-2013 Jacyk Postdoctoral Fellow Professor Mayhill Fowler will present her recently published book. In Beau Monde on Empire’s Edge, Mayhill C. Fowler tells the story of the rise and fall of a group of men who created culture both Soviet and Ukrainian. This collective biography showcases new aspects of the politics of cultural production in the Soviet Union by focusing on theater and on the multi-ethnic borderlands. Unlike their contemporaries in Moscow or Leningrad, these artists from the regions have been all but forgotten despite the quality of their art. Beau Monde restores the periphery to the center of Soviet culture. Sources in Russian, Ukrainian, Polish, and Yiddish highlight the important multi-ethnic context and the challenges inherent in constructing Ukrainian culture in a place of Ukrainians, Russians, Poles, and Jews. Beau Monde on Empire’s Edge traces the growing overlap between the arts and the state in the early Soviet years, and explains the intertwining of politics and culture in the region today. The book has been published with University of Toronto Press.

Dr. Mayhill C. Fowler (Ph.D., Princeton) is assistant professor of history at Stetson University, where she also directs the program in Russian, East European, and Eurasian Studies. She teaches and researches the cultural history of Russia and Eastern Europe, with a focus on Ukraine, and is interested in how social and political structures shape entertainment, representation, and live performance. She has published widely on culture in Ukraine. Her first book– Beau Monde at Empire’s Edge: State and Stage in Soviet Ukraine (Toronto, 2017)—tells the story of how a very rich cultural center became a cultural periphery through a collective biography of young artists and officials in the 1920s and 1930s. Her second project investigates how we entertain soldiers, through the lens of the former Red Army Theater in Lviv. She also thinks about the Soviet actress, Yiddish theater, and 19th century itinerant theater clans. She was the Petro Jacyk Postdoctoral Fellow at Toronto in 2012-2013, held a postdoctoral fellowship at Harvard’s Ukrainian Research Institute, and taught cultural history at the Catholic University in Lviv.

Room 208N, Munk School of Global Affairs (1 Devonshire Place)

Register here

Sponsored by the Petro Jacyk Program for the Study of Ukraine and the Centre for European, Russian, and Eurasian Studies.


Sunday, October 29, 3 pm

George Liber (University of Alabama at Birmingham):
Book presentation: Total Wars and the Making of Modern Ukraine, 1914–1954

George Liber will speak about his book Total Wars and the Making of Modern Ukraine, 1914–1954. Between 1914 and 1954, the Ukrainian-speaking territories in East Central Europe suffered almost 15 million “excess deaths” as well as large-scale evacuations and population transfers, the consequences of two world wars, revolutions, famines, genocidal campaigns, and purges. George Liber argues that these events made and re-made Ukraine’s boundaries, institutionalized its national identities, and pruned its population according to various state-sponsored political, racial, and social ideologies. In short, the two world wars, the Holodomor, and the Holocaust played critical roles in forming today’s Ukraine.

George O. Liber is Professor of History at the University of Alabama in Birmingham. His previous books include Soviet Nationality Policy, Urban Growth and Identity Change in the Ukrainian SSR, 1923-1934 and Alexander Dovzhenko: A Life in Soviet Film.

Location: St. Vladimir Institute (620 Spadina Avenue)

No registration is required.

Sponsored by the Petro Jacyk Program for the Study of Ukraine, the Centre for European, Russian, and Eurasian Studies, Holodomor Research and Education Consortium, and St. Vladimir Institute.


Monday, October 30, 7-10 pm

Anne Applebaum Presents "Red Famine: Stalin's War on Ukraine"

Author of the Pulitzer Prize-winning Gulag and the National Book Award finalist Iron Curtain, Anne Applebaum presents her new book, Red Famine: Stalin’s War on Ukraine, a revelatory history of one of Stalin's greatest crimes.

In 1929 Stalin launched his policy of agricultural collectivization—in effect a second Russian revolution—which forced millions of peasants off their land and onto collective farms. The result was a catastrophic famine, the most lethal in European history. But instead of sending relief the Soviet state made use of the catastrophe to rid itself of a political problem. In Red Famine, Anne Applebaum argues that millions of Ukrainians perished not because they were accidental victims of a bad policy but because the state deliberately set out to kill them. Applebaum proves what has long been suspected: after a series of unsettling rebellions, Stalin set out to destroy the Ukrainian peasantry. The state sealed the republic’s borders and seized all available food. Starvation set in rapidly, and people ate anything: grass, tree bark, dogs, corpses. Red Famine captures the horror of ordinary people struggling to survive extraordinary evil. Today, Russia, the successor to the Soviet Union, has placed Ukrainian independence in its sights once more. Applebaum’s compulsively readable narrative recalls one of the worst crimes of the twentieth century, and shows how it may foreshadow a new threat to the political order in the twenty-first.

Anne Applebaum writes on history and contemporary politics in Eastern Europe, Ukraine, and Russia. She is a columnist for The Washington Post, a Professor of Practice at the London School of Economics, and a contributor to The New York Review of Books. Formerly a member of the Washington Post editorial board, she has also worked as the Foreign and Deputy Editor of the Spectator magazine in London, as the Political Editor of the Evening Standard, and as a columnist at Slate and at several British newspapers, including the Daily and Sunday Telegraphs. From 1988-1991 she covered the collapse of communism as the Warsaw correspondent of the Economist magazine and the Independent newspaper. Her previous books include Iron Curtain: The Crushing of Eastern Europe, 1944-1956, which won the 2012 Cundill Prize for Historical Literature and the Duke of Westminster Medal. She is also the author of Gulag: A History, which narrates the history of the Soviet concentration camps system and describes daily life in the camps, making extensive use of recently opened Russian archives as well as memoirs and interviews Gulag won the Pulitzer Prize for non-fiction in 2004.

New location:
Innis Town Hall Theatre 
2 Sessex Ave
Toronto, ON M5S 1J5

Register here


Sponsored by the Holodomor Research and Education Consortium, the Petro Jacyk Program for the Study of Ukraine, and the Centre for European, Russian, and Eurasian Studies.


Tuesday, November 7, 5-7 pm

Smuggling Ukraine Westward: A Conversation with Ukrainian Writer Andriy Lyubka

Chair: Maxim Tarnawsky (Professor, Department of Slavic Languages and Literatures)

Andriy Lyubka, was born in 1987 in Riga, Latvia. He is the author of three books of poetry—Eight Months of Schizophrenia (2007), TERRORISM (2008), and Forty Bucks Plus Tip (2009)—and four books of prose—KILLER: A Collection of Stories (2012), Sleeping with Women (2014), Carbide (2015), A Room for Sorrow (2016) and Saudade (2017). His novel Carbide was shortlisted for the Angelus Central European Literature Award this year. He has also published several translations from Polish, Serbian and English into Ukrainian. He holds degrees in Ukrainian Philology from Uzhhorod University (2009) and in Balkan Studies from the University of Warsaw (2014). His works have been translated into Polish, Chinese, English, Portuguese, Russian, Czech, Serbian, Macedonian, Slovak, Lithuanian, Romanian, Turkish and German. He is a columnist for Radio Liberty, Den and Zbruch. Mr. Lyubka has been a curator for the literary festivals Kyivski Lavry and Meridian Czernowitz and has been writer-in-residence at cultural institutes in Poland, Latvia, Romania, Hungary, Sweden and Austria.

Room 108N, Munk School of Global Affairs (1 Devonshire Place)

Register here

Sponsored by the Danylo Husar Struk Programme in Ukrainian Literature of the Canadian Institute of Ukrainian Studies, University of Alberta; the Petro Jacyk Program for the Study of Ukraine; the Centre for European, Russian, and Eurasian Studies; the Ukrainian Jewish Encounter.


Wednesday, November 8, 4-6 pm

Robert Frost (University of Aberdeen): Challenging the Establishment: Mykhailo Hrushevsky, Lviv, and the Writing of Volume 4 of the History of Ukraine-Rus'

Chair: Piotr Wrobel (Konstanty Reynert Chair of Polish History, University of Toronto)

Discussant: Frank Sysyn (Professor, University of Alberta)

This talk will explore the political and cultural battles fought by Mykhailo Hrushevsky from his appointment to the chair of Ukrainian history in Lviv in 1894 to the outbreak of the First World War in 1914. In these years he fought battles of varying degrees of intenstity against various establishments: the Austrian government in Vienna; the Polish authorities in Lviv; the Polish-dominated University of Lviv, and the Polish cultural and historical establishments in Galicia and beyond its borders. He also played a central role in transforming the Ukrainian cultural establishment in Galicia, sometimes in conflict with its leaders; sometimes in collaboration with them. Against this background of struggle, and the worsening state of Polish-Ukrainian relations in Galicia, Hrushevsky conceived and wrote volume 4, in the years between 1901 and 1907. It covers the period of Polish-Lithuanian rule of Ukraine, from the collapse of the principality of Galicia-Volhynia in 1340 to the 1569 Union of Lublin, when Ukraine was incorporated into the kingdom of Poland. Volume 4 was written when the young Hrushevsky was at the height of his powers as a historian and was unconstrained by the censorship which limited what he could write in the Soviet years. The talk will explore the connection between his political, social, and cultural activities after 1894 and his radical reconceptualization of the relationship between Ukraine, Lithuania, and Poland in the years in which the Polish-Lithuanian union was formed. It will suggest that Volume 4 contains some of Hrushevsky’s finest writing on political history.

The session will be chaired by Professor Piotr Wróbel, University of Toronto. Professor Frank Sysyn, University of Alberta, will serve as a discussant. The session will include a presentation of Mykhailo Hrushevsky, History of Ukraine-Rus’, Vol.4 Political Relations in the Fourteenth to Sixteenth Centuries, translated by Andrij Kudla Wynnyckyj. Ed. Robert Frost, Yaroslav Fedoruk, and Frank E. Sysyn with the assistance of Myroslav Yurkevich (Edmonton-Toronto: Canadian Institute of Ukrainian Studies Press, 2017). The publication is a project of the Peter Jacyk Centre for Ukrainian Historical Research, Canadian Institute of Ukrainian Studies, University of Alberta. Volume 4 was sponsored by the Ukrainian Canadian Foundation of Taras Shevchenko.

Room 108N, Munk School of Global Affairs (1 Devonshire Place)

Register here

Sponsored by the Petro Jacyk Program for the Study of Ukraine, the Peter Jacyk Centre for Ukrainian Historical Research, Canadian Institute of Ukrainian Studies at the University of Alberta, and the Centre for European, Russian, and Eurasian Studies.


Friday, November 17, 3-5 pm

Tamara Hundorova (Petro Jacyk Visiting Professor; professor and chair of the Department of Literature and Comparative Studies in the Shevchenko Institute of Literature):Europe or Asia? Toward the Idea of Ukrainian Occidentalism of the 1940s: a Postcolonial Perspective

Chair: Taras Koznarsky (Professor, Department of Slavic Languages and Literatures)

The situation of the European spiritual crisis after the Second World War set the special conditions for drawing Ukrainian occidental theory that was born in the circle of Ukrainian scholars united around the Ukrainian Free University and in the intellectual circles of the displaced persons camps of the 1940-50ies. While reflecting on the crisis of European identity Ukrainian intellectuals discusses Occidentalism as a decolonizing discourse to introduce a special mission of Ukraine to Western audience, to contextualize the idea of westernization of the 1920ies and to offer an alternative perspective of a universal European history.

Tamara Hundorova (Ph.D. in Philology) is a corresponding member of the National Academy of Sciences of Ukraine, professor and chair of the Department of Literature and Comparative Studies in the Shevchenko Institute of Literature (NAS of Ukraine), the Executive Director of the Institute of Criticism, professor and dean of the Ukrainian Free University (Munich), and an Associate of the Harvard Ukrainian Research Institute. She has published extensively on Ukrainian literature, modernism, postmodernism, postcolonial criticism, kitsch, feminism and Chornobyl.

Room 208N, Munk School of Global Affairs (1 Devonshire Place)

Register here

Sponsored by the Petro Jacyk Program for the Study of Ukraine and the Centre for European, Russian, and Eurasian Studies.


Tuesday, 28 November, 7-9 pm

2017 Toronto Annual Ukrainian Famine Lecture by Jars Balan (CIUS)

JARS BALAN, Interim Director of the Canadian Institute of Ukrainian Studies (CIUS), University of Alberta, will deliver the 20th Toronto Annual Ukrainian Famine Lecture, “Tell the Kremlin we are starving; we have no bread!” Rhea Clyman’s 1932 Odyssey through the “Famine Lands” of Ukraine.

Jars Balan will discuss the life of journalist Rhea Clyman, one of the only journalists to witness and write about the Ukrainian Famine of 1932-33 known as the Holodomor. Born in Toronto to a poor immigrant Jewish family, Clyman encountered adversity early in life, losing part of one leg in a streetcar accident. In September 1932, Clyman, then 28 years old, made a journey by car through the agricultural heartland of the Soviet Union just as the Holodomor was beginning to exact its terrible toll. Her road trip took her from Moscow through Eastern Ukraine all the way to Tbilisi, Georgia, where she was arrested and given twenty-four hours to leave the country, accused of spreading false news about the Soviet Union. Her expulsion, the first by Soviet authorities of a Western journalist in eleven years, was reported in scores of newspapers around the world. Clyman’s vivid eyewitness accounts of the “Famine-Lands” were published in the London Daily Express before appearing in twenty-one feature articles in the Toronto Telegram in 1933. Balan will discuss the passion, courage, and perseverance that Clyman exhibited both in her reporting and in life.

Balan has been involved with CIUS for almost four decades and has an extensive list of scholarly publications. Since 2000 he has overseen the administration of the Ukrainian Canadian Studies Program, and in 2007 he was appointed coordinator of Kule Ukrainian Canadian Studies Centre (CIUS). He is working on a book about Rhea Clyman.

THE TORONTO ANNUAL FAMINE LECTURE began in 1998 at the initiative of the Famine-Genocide Commemorative Committee of the Ukrainian Canadian Congress, Toronto Branch. Past lecturers have included James Mace, Norman Naimark (Stanford University), Alexander Motyl (Rutgers University), Anne Applebaum (Washington Post), Timothy Snyder (Yale University), and Serhii Plokhy (Harvard University).

Vivian & David Campbell Conference Facility, Munk School of Global Affairs (1 Devonshire Place)
Toronto, Ontario, M5S 3K7

Register here

The lecture is sponsored by the Holodomor Research and Education Consortium (HREC), a Toronto office of the Canadian Institute of Ukrainian Studies (University of Alberta); the Petro Jacyk Program for the Study of Ukraine at the Centre for European, Russian, and Eurasian Studies (University of Toronto); the Canadian Foundation for Ukrainian Studies; and the Ukrainian Canadian Congress (Toronto Branch).


Thursday, December 7, 3-5 pm

Anna Shternshis (AI and Malka Green Associate Professor of Yiddish Studies, University of Toronto): That is How I Lost My Mother: Jewish Narratives of the Ukrainian Famine 1932-33

Chair: Frank Sysyn (Director, CIUS Office, University of Alberta)

Based on hundreds of oral histories of Ukrainian Jews, the lecture discusses how Soviet Jews survived Famine, and how they made sense of their experiences.

Anna Shternshis holds the position of Al and Malka Green Associate Professor of Yiddish studies and the director of the Anne Tanenbaum Centre for Jewish Studies at the University of Toronto. She received her doctoral degree (D.Phil) in Modern Languages and Literatures from Oxford University in 2001. Shternshis is the author of Soviet and Kosher: Jewish Popular Culture in the Soviet Union, 1923 – 1939 (Bloomington: Indiana University Press, 2006) and When Sonia Met Boris: An Oral History of Jewish Life under Stalin (New York: Oxford University Press, 2017). She is the author of over 20 articles on the Soviet Jews during World War II, Russian Jewish culture and post-Soviet Jewish diaspora. Together with David Shneer, Shternshis co-edits East European Jewish Affairs, the leading journal in the field of East European Jewish Studies.

Room 108N, Munk School of Global Affairs (1 Devonshire Place)

Register here

Sponsored by the Petro Jacyk Program for the Study of Ukraine, the Centre for European, Russian, and Eurasian Studies, the Holodomor Research and Education Consortium, the Canadian Institute of Ukrainian Studies at the University of Alberta, and Anne Tanenbaum Centre for Jewish Studies.

Wednesday, February 28, 6-8 pm

Unspoken Territories: An Evening with Filmmaker Marusya Bociurkiw

Moderator: Marta Baziuk (Director of the Holodomor Education and Research Consortium, CIUS, Toronto)

Sometimes outrageous, often funny and always insightful, poet/pedagogue Marusya Bociurkiw's films and books create an alternative diaspora archive, built on hybridity, intersectionality and the desire to speak to that which has been unspoken.Her body of work - 10 films and 6 books unique to the fields of Slavic Studies and Slavic literature - rewrite the Ukrainian settler narrative and create new queer and intersectional feminist imaginaries that cross ethnic, transnational, and identitarian boundaries. Bociurkiw will show clips from her films and will share footage from her current project, "Post-Revolution."

Marusya Bociurkiw is associate professor of media theory and co-director of The Studio for Media Activism and Critical Thought , which promotes research-creation and graduate study in the areas of media studies, critical theory, Aboriginal, feminist, and queer studies, and media activism. She holds a Ph.D. in Interdisciplinary Studies from the University of British Columbia, an M.A.in Social and Political Thought from York University, and a B.F.A from NSCAD University. Dr. Bociurkiw’s academic research is broadly concerned with the intersections of affect, nation and technology, and their gendered, queered and racialized ramifications. She is also a media artist, writer, blogger and scholar whose media works and books about the sexuality, ethnicity , food, and culture have been screened and read all over the world. Her films and videos are in the collections of the National Gallery of Canada, The National Archives, and various universities and libraries. A longtime media activist, she founded Emma Productions, a feminist media collective in the 1980’s and is currently engaged in documenting that history. She is the writer/director of nine films and videos, including “Unspoken Territory”, a history of racial profiling in Canada, and “What’s the Ukrainian Word For Sex: A Sexual Journey through Eastern Europe.”

Click here to register for this event

Media Commons Theatre, 3rd floor of Robarts Library, 130 St. George Street

Sponsored by the Petro Jacyk Program for the Study of Ukraine and the Centre for European, Russian, and Eurasian Studies

Monday, March 12, 2-4 pm

Andreas Umland (Senior Research Fellow at the Institute for Euro-Atlantic Cooperation in Kyiv, Ukraine): German Ostpolitik and the "Ukraine Crisis": Berlin's Changing Approach to Russia After the Annexation of Crimea

The spectacular events of 2014 – the annexation of Crimea, start of the war in the Donets Basin, shooting of Malysian airliner MH17 over Eastern Ukraine, etc. – have changed German perceptions of the current Russian leadership fundamentally, as expressed in far going shifts in public discourse and opinion. Gradually, this change of position has also been noted in Ukraine. While there was in summer 2014 still an inapt Ukrainian “Mrs Ribbentropp” against Angela Merkel, the German Chancellor is today perceived, by most Ukrainian political observers, as one of the most pro-Ukrainian Western leaders. Nevertheless, an array of continuing formal and informal ties between Russia and Germany (economic, cultural, political etc.) continues to exert a largely unhealthy influence on German society and politics, as they often are used by the Kremlin to manipulate German decision and opinion making. These attempts are eased by deep-seated pathologies in post-war German foreign political thought including escapist pacifism, anti-Americanism, and mis-perceptions of the East European past and present as well as Germany’s role therein. The continuing significant German trade with Russia, and only slowly improving public knowledge about Ukraine are preventing an already disillusioned political class in Berlin to take a more resolute stance within the current Russian-Western confrontation.

Andreas Umland studied politics and Russian affairs in Leipzig, Berlin, Oxford, Stanford and Cambridge. He taught at the Urals State University, St. Antony’s College Oxford, Shevchenko University of Kyiv, Catholic University of Eichstaett and Kyiv-Mohyla Academy. Since 2014, he is Senior Research Fellow at the Institute for Euro-Atlantic Cooperation in Kyiv. He is also general editor of the book series “Soviet and Post-Soviet Politics and Society” and consulting editor for the “Journal of Soviet and Post-Soviet Politics and Society.”

Room 208N, Munk School of Global Affairs (1 Devonshire Place)

Click here to register for this event

Sponsored by the Petro Jacyk Program for the Study of Ukraine, the Joint Initiative for German and European Studies, the John Yaremko Chair of Ukrainian Studies; the Canadian Institute of Ukrainian Studies at the University of Alberta, and the Centre for European, Russian, and Eurasian Studies.


Wednesday, March 14, 4-6 pm

Tanja Penter (Heidelberg University): Child Victims and Female Perpetrators: Dealing with the Nazi Murder of Disabled Children in the Post-War Soviet Union

In November 1943, shortly after the liberation of the occupied Soviet territories by the Red Army, three mass graves with the bodies of 144 children were discovered in a former colony for disabled children in Zaporizhia region. The disabled children had been shot in two mass murder actions by a German SS special unit in October 1941 and in March 1943. In the course of the NKVD investigations of the case, seven former Soviet employees of the colony, among them four women, were put on trial and convicted for complicity with the Germans in the crime. The trial documentation in many ways presents a fascinating historical resource: First, it deals with an understudied context of Nazi-crimes in the Soviet Union in WWII: the murder of disabled people. Second, it shows competing logics and possibilities of action of the Soviet defendants. Third, it is one of the few examples that show how Soviet postwar justice dealt with female collaborators. And fourth, it reveals to a certain extent problems of the Soviet treatment of disabled persons in prewar times.

Tanja Penter is professor of Eastern European History at Heidelberg University, Germany. Her research interests include: comparison of dictatorships, Soviet war crimes trials, questions of transitional justice and compensation for Nazi crimes and memory policies in the Soviet Union and its successor states. Her books include: Kohle für Stalin und Hitler. Arbeiten und Leben im Donbass 1929 bis 1953 (Essen 2010). She is a member of the German-Russian and the German-Ukrainian Commission of Historians and of the scientific board of the German Historical Institute in Moscow.

Room 208N, Munk School of Global Affairs (1 Devonshire Place)

Click here to register for this event

Sponsored by the Joint Initiative in German and Euroepan Studies, Chancellor Rose and Ray Wolfe Chair in Holocaust Studies, the Petro Jacyk Program for the Study of Ukraine, the Centre for European, Russian, and Eurasian Studies.

Tuesday, March 20, 4-6 pm

Maria Sonevytsky (Assistant Professor, Bard College): The Rural Voice on Reality TV: The Politics of Timbre in the Ukrainian "Voice"

Chair: Joshua Pilzer (Associate Professor of Ethnomusicology, Faculty of Music, University of Toronto)

This paper concerns the politics and aesthetics of what is known in post-Soviet Ukraine as the avtentyka singing voice (автентичний голос), which translates literally as the “authentic” voice. My focus is on the problem that this avtentyka vocal timbre creates when it appears in the context of a popular reality TV singing competition called Holos Krainy, or “Voice of the Nation,” part of the global “Voice” franchise that has aired in Ukraine since 2011. Beyond the clashes of style and genre that occur when avtentyka singers who use village timbres sing modern pop hits, I attend to a more general politics of vocal timbre to examine how the avtentyka voice, which sits within a historical trajectory of resistance to state power, challenges the conventional wisdom about how the folkloric necessarily points backwards, toward an essentialized national past. Rather, I consider avtentyka and its iconic vocal timbre as a form of late Soviet expressive culture that also has the somewhat paradoxical potential to operate in today’s Ukrainian mediasphere as a forward-looking expressive form. Rooted in ethnographic research among avtentyka practitioners, I examine how the politicized timbres of avtentyka reject logics of success according to the standards of reality TV “democratainment” and remake failure in the competition as an act of refusal—of the limited musical forms that dominate Ukrainian media and as an assertion of the ungovernable wildness of Ukrainian rural expressivity.

Maria Sonevytsky is currently Assistant Professor of Ethnomusicology at Bard College. Her first book, Wild Music: Sound and Sovereignty in Ukraine, is forthcoming on Wesleyan University Press. In the fall of 2018, she will join the ethnomusicology faculty at the University of California, Berkeley.

Click here to register for this event

Sponsored by the Petro Jacyk Program for the Study of Ukraine, the Centre for European, Russian, and Eurasian Studies, University of Toronto Ethnomusicology Roundtable; Wilfried Laurier’s Anthropology Program at the Faculty of Arts, Office of the Vice President Academic & Provost, Anthropology Students' Association.

Content: © 2002 Petro Jacyk • Design: © 2002 dragandesign.