This Week

Dec
4
Friday, December 4, 2020
12:00PM EST
Zoom webinar & YouTube Live

This event will be held virtually as a Zoom webinar and streamed via YouTube Live. There will be no in-person event.

Click here to purchase Farewell, Aylis from Book Culture NYC.

Register here for the Zoom webinar or tune in on YouTube Live.

Please join the Harriman Institute, PEN America, and the Institute for the Study of Human Rights for a discussion with Akram Aylisli, author of Farewell Aylis: A Non-Traditional Novel in Three Works (Academic Studies Press, 2018), translator Katherine E. Young, and journalist Alex Raufoglu. Moderated by Professor Mark Lipovetsky. This event is part of our Contemporary Culture Series.

The three novellas of Farewell, Aylis take place over decades of transition in a country that rather resembles modern-day Azerbaijan. In Yemen, a Soviet traveler takes an afternoon stroll and finds himself suspected of defecting to America. In Stone Dreams, an actor explores the limits of one man’s ability to live a moral life amid conditions of sociopolitical upheaval, ethnic cleansing, and petty professional intrigue. In A Fantastical Traffic Jam, those who serve the aging leader of a corrupt, oil-rich country scheme to stay alive. Farewell, Aylis, a new essay by the author that reflects on the political firestorm surrounding these novellas and his current situation as a prisoner of conscience in Azerbaijan, was commissioned especially for this Academic Studies Press edition.

Akram Aylisli is an Azerbaijani writer, playwright, novelist, and editor. His works have been translated from his native Azeri into more than twenty languages. In 2014 Aylisli was nominated for the Nobel Peace Prize in connection with his novella Stone Dreams. Mr. Aylisli lives under de facto house arrest in Baku, Azerbaijan.

Alex Raufoglu is an Azerbaijani-American journalist, researcher, and press freedom advocate who focuses on Eurasia. Since 2008, Raufoglu has lived in the U.S. where he works as a journalist for several media outlets. His reporting on governance, the media, human rights, and security issues has appeared in international news outlets. He also represents Turan News Agency in the United States. In addition, Alex is the country specialist on Azerbaijan and Georgia at Amnesty USA in Washington D.C. Raufoglu serves as a board member of The Association of Foreign Press Correspondents in the United States.

Katherine E. Young is the author of Day of the Border Guards and former poet laureate of Arlington, VA. Young has translated two collections of poetry by Inna Kabysh, Two Poems and Blue Birds and Red Horses. Her translations of Russian and Russophone poets have won national and international awards. She is the recipient of a 2017 Translation Fellowship from the National Endowment for the Arts for the translation of Farewell, Aylis.

 

Event Video
Dec
8
Tuesday, December 8, 2020
7:00pm EST
Zoom webinar & YouTube Live

This event will be held virtually as a Zoom webinar and streamed via YouTube Live. There will be no in-person event.

Register here for the Zoom webinar, or tune in on YouTube Live.

Please join the Harriman Institute and the Russian Film Club at Columbia University for a discussion with Nancy Condee, Stephen Norris, and Dusty Wilmes about the 2019 Russian thriller Text. This event is part of our Contemporary Culture Series.

Klim Shipenko’s Text (2019) is a rare case of Russian thriller that has managed to be gripping, commercially successful, and critically acclaimed. Based on Dmitry Glukhovsky best-selling novel, the film’s criminal plotline is shaped by the use of social media, making Text one of the first Russian films to center on the digital second life. Shipenko’s exploration of technology as a force that splits individual’s existence is reinforced at the level of style, inviting an inquiry into the transformation of Russian genre film both in form and in content. The film’s use of explicit sex scenes and expletives raises additional questions on the state of Russian film industry in the increasingly strict conditions of censorship.

The film is available at https://start.ru/watch/tekst (Russian only).

Event Live Stream. December 8, 2020, 7:00pm.
Dec
8
Tuesday, December 8, 2020
12:00pm EST
Zoom webinar & YouTube Live

This event will be held virtually as a Zoom webinar and streamed via YouTube Live. There will be no in-person event.

Register here for the Zoom webinar, or tune in on YouTube Live.

Join us for a meeting of the New York-Russia Public Policy Forum, co-hosted by the Harriman Institute at Columbia University and the New York University Jordan Center for the Advanced Study of Russia.

This month, our distinguished panelists will bring a comparative perspective to the ongoing anti-regime protests in Belarus. Drawing on current and ongoing research, they will discuss what the several months long movement may mean for the political future of Belarus, Russia, and other countries in the region.

SPEAKERS

Aliaksandr Herasimenka, postdoctoral researcher at the Computational Propaganda Project, University of Oxford

Olga Onuch, Associate Professor in Politics at the University of Manchester

Katsiaryna Shmatsina, Rethink.CEE fellow at the German Marshall Fund of the U.S.

Gerard Toal, Professor of Government & International Affairs, Virginia Tech

Moderated by:

Alexander Cooley, Director of the Harriman Institute, Columbia University

Joshua Tucker, Director of the Jordan Center for the Advanced Study of Russia, New York University

BIOGRAPHIES

Aliaksandr Herasimenka is a postdoctoral researcher at the Computational Propaganda Project at University of Oxford. His work investigates how political groups and governments use social media to manipulate public opinion. He also studies how people organise protest movements in authoritarian countries. His research interests also include computational methods, messaging platforms and anti-vaccination movements. Herasimenka is also part of the Alternative News Networks project. Twitter: @alesherasimenka

Olga Onuch is a Senior Lecturer in Politics at the University of Manchester. She is also an Associate of Nuffield College (Oxford) and of the Harvard Ukrainian Research Institute, and was a Research Fellow at the Davis Center (Harvard) in 2017. Her comparative study of protest (as well as elections, migration & identity) in Eastern Europe and Latin America has made her a leading expert in Ukrainian (and Argentine) politics specifically, but also in inter-regional comparative analysis. Her book Mapping Mass Mobilizations (2014, reviewed in Europe-Asia Studies) explores the processes leading up to mass protest engagement in Ukraine (2004) and Argentina (2001). Onuch’s research on protest politics in Ukraine has resulted in her consulting policymakers in Canada, Ukraine, the UK and US. Her research received praise and awards placing her on the map as one of the foremost experts on protests and activism in Ukraine.

Katsiaryna Shmatsina is a Belarusian political analyst focusing on the Belarusian foreign policy, regional security, and the impact of the great power relations on smaller actors. Katsiaryna’s portfolio includes non-residential fellowship at the German Marshall Fund (2020) and Think Visegrad Fellowship (2019). Previously, she worked for the American Bar Association where she managed the democratic-governance and rule-of-law projects. She holds a Master’s in international relations from Syracuse University, New York and a law degree from Belarusian State University.

Gerard Toal (Gearóid Ó Tuathail) is Professor in the School of Public and International Affairs at Virginia Tech’s campus is Arlington, Virginia. He is a founding figure of critical geopolitics, a research field that examines the interactions of material space with geographical imaginations and technological change in the study of world politics. He is also a leading figure in the study of territorial conflicts in post-Communist contexts. His works include the award-winning books Near Abroad: Putin, the West and the Contest for Ukraine and the Caucasus (Oxford, 2017) and Bosnia Remade: Ethnic Cleansing and its Reversal (Oxford, 2011). His latest research project examines geopolitical orientations in six states, and five contested regions, close to the Russian Federation. He is also writing a book on geopolitics amidst climate change.

 

Event photo: By Максим Шикунец - Own work, CC BY-SA 4.0, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=93201623

Event Video
Dec
10
Thursday, December 10, 2020
12:00pm EST
Zoom webinar & YouTube Live

This event will be held virtually as a Zoom webinar and streamed via YouTube Live. There will be no in-person event.

Click here to purchase Quiet Spiders of the Hidden Soul from Book Culture NYC.

Register here for the Zoom webinar, or tune in on YouTube Live.

Please join the Ukrainian Studies Program at the Harriman Institute for a presentation of the new publication Quiet Spiders of the Hidden Soul: Mykola (Nik) Bazhan’s Early Experimental Poetry (Academic Studies Press, 2020).

The bilingual Ukrainian-English collection Quiet Spiders of the Hidden Soul: Mykola (Nik) Bazhan’s Early Experimental Poetry (Academic Studies Press, 2020) brings together the most interesting experimental works by Mykola (Nik) Bazhan, one of the major Ukrainian poets of the 20th century. An ardent Modernist, Bazhan was known for his idiosyncratic style and unique vocabulary. After Stalinist rule forced the poet into the straightjacket of officially sanctioned Socialist Realism, his early texts have been dismissed as both irrelevant and subversive. Many poems from Bazhan’s three remarkable early collections (1926, 1927, and 1929) remain unknown to readers, both in Ukraine and the West. The publication for the first time makes these outstanding works available. 

More than fifteen translators and writers joined forces for this massive project, presenting a diverse set of translation techniques and approaches to collaboratively tackle this challenging corpus.

Lev Fridman and Oksana Rosenblum will briefly describe the stages of the project as it grew from a two-person team and a single poem; Halyna Babak will introduce the poetics and mindset of the early Bazhan while Ainsley Morse and Ostap Kin will read a few poems in the original and in their English translation briefly remarking on the process of deciphering them and rendering them into English. Moderated by Mark Andryczyk.

BIOGRAPHIES

Lev Fridman is a Speech-Language Pathologist based in New York City. He has facilitated translation projects and publications, and his own writings and translations have appeared in Ugly Duckling Presse, Odessa Review and The Café Review.

Oksana Rosenblum is an art historian and translator residing in New York City. Her projects have included visual research for the newly created museums of Jewish History in Warsaw and Moscow. Oksana’s poetry translations from Ukrainian and book reviews appeared in Kalyna Review, National Translation Month, and Versopolis.

Halyna Babak is a scholar and editor in chief of the Czech journal NaVýchod. She received her PhD in Slavic literatures from Charles University, Prague. Her research focuses on Ukrainian and Russian avant-garde literature and Ukrainian interwar literary theory.

Ostap Kin edited an anthology New York Elegies: Ukrainian Poetry on the City (2019), translated Serhiy Zhadan’s collection A New Orthography (2020; with John Hennessy), Yui Andrukhovych’s collection of poems Songs of a Dead Rooster (2018; with Vitaly Chernetsky), and Vasyl Lozynsky’s chapbook The Maidan After Hours (2017; with Ali Kinsella).

Dr. Ainsley Morse is a scholar, teacher, and translator, primarily of Russian and former Yugoslav literatures. Her research focuses on the literature and culture of the postwar Soviet period, particularly unofficial or "underground" poetry, as well as the avant-garde and children's literature. She teaches Russian Language and Russian/Eastern European literature at Dartmouth College.

Event Live Stream. December 10, 2020, 12:00pm EST.