This Week

Jan
18
Friday, January 18, 2019 to Friday, March 15, 2019
Harriman Institute Atrium, 12th Floor International Affairs Building (420 W 118th St)

Exhibit runs January 18 – March 15, 2019. Exhibit hours are Monday–Friday, 9:30AM – 5:00PM excluding university holidays.

Please join us for the exhibit opening on Wednesday, January 23 at 6:00pm.

On Thursday, January 24 at 12:00pm, Alexei Lobov, Director of the State Museum of Vladimir Mayakovsky, will present materials not included in the exhibition and tell the story of the poet’s triumph and tragedy, accompanied by a recitation of Mayakovsky’s poetry.

The Harriman Institute is pleased to present the exhibit Through the Brooklyn Bridge: Here Stood Mayakovsky, curated by the State Museum of Vladimir Mayakovsky (Moscow). The exhibit is organized around the poet's journey to America in 1925, drawing on poems and photographs, including portraits of friends, colleagues, and people of art and culture Mayakovsky met during his trip. In addition, it will include rare landscape sketches and drawings from the collection of the State Museum of Vladimir Mayakovsky.

This project is focused on the “American” period of the poet's life, the result of which was more than two dozen poems and his book of essays My Discovery of America. In the United States, the Mayakovsky lectured about Soviet Russia, the new revolutionary art, and gave poetry readings in New York, Cleveland, Detroit, Chicago, Philadelphia, and Pittsburgh. Mayakovsky's long-awaited meeting with his friend David Burliuk took place in New York, where Burliuk, the father of Russian Futurism, lived with his family in the Bronx after leaving the Soviet Union. Upon his return to the USSR, he shared his impressions of America. 

This exhibition also unravels a mystery the poet had kept under wraps: the cryptic word “daughter,”  found on a blank page of his notebook, long haunted inquiring minds and sparked various rumors and hypotheses. But Patricia Thompson solved the mystery by disclosing the love story of her parents, Mayakovsky and Elly Jones.

The significance of Vladimir Mayakovsky as a man of extraordinary genius is invaluable not only for Russia but for the whole world. His controversial, charismatic personality left no one indifferent. He was imitated, admired, and debated. A number of people have tried to explain his phenomenal talent.

Jan
23
Wednesday, January 23, 2019
6:00 pm - 8:00 pm
Harriman Institute Atrium, 12th Floor International Affairs Building (420 W 118th St)

Exhibit runs January 18 – March 15, 2019. Exhibit hours are Monday–Friday, 9:30AM – 5:00PM excluding university holidays.

Please join the Harriman Institute for the opening reception of the exhibit Through the Brooklyn Bridge: Here Stood Mayakovsky, curated by the State Museum of Vladimir Mayakovsky (Moscow). The exhibit is organized around the poet's journey to America in 1925, drawing on poems and photographs, including portraits of friends, colleagues, and people of art and culture Mayakovsky met during his trip. In addition, it will include rare landscape sketches and drawings from the collection of the State Museum of Vladimir Mayakovsky.

This project is focused on the “American” period of the poet's life, the result of which was more than two dozen poems and his book of essays My Discovery of America. In the United States, the Mayakovsky lectured about Soviet Russia, the new revolutionary art, and gave poetry readings in New York, Cleveland, Detroit, Chicago, Philadelphia, and Pittsburgh. Mayakovsky's long-awaited meeting with his friend David Burliuk took place in New York, where Burliuk, the father of Russian Futurism, lived with his family in the Bronx after leaving the Soviet Union. Upon his return to the USSR, he shared his impressions of America. 

This exhibition also unravels a mystery the poet had kept under wraps: the cryptic word “daughter,”  found on a blank page of his notebook, long haunted inquiring minds and sparked various rumors and hypotheses. But Patricia Thompson solved the mystery by disclosing the love story of her parents, Mayakovsky and Elly Jones.

The significance of Vladimir Mayakovsky as a man of extraordinary genius is invaluable not only for Russia but for the whole world. His controversial, charismatic personality left no one indifferent. He was imitated, admired, and debated. A number of people have tried to explain his phenomenal talent.

Please also join us on Thursday, January 24 at 12:00pm for a presentation by Alexei Lobov (Director of the State Museum of Vladimir Mayakovsky) of materials not included in the exhibition as well as the story of the poet’s triumph and tragedy, accompanied by a recitation of Mayakovsky’s poetry.

Jan
23
Wednesday, January 23, 2019
12:30pm
Lindsay Rogers Room (707 International Affairs Building)

Please join us for a meeting of the Columbia University Comparative Politics Seminar with speaker Monika Nalepa (University of Chicago).

Covert forms of authoritarian repression, such as infiltration of religious organizations with secret collaborators of the authoritarian regime, remain an understudied strategy of authoritarian survival, in contrast to overt forms of repression.  This paper uses the historic case of Poland to study the drivers and consequences of such infiltration. To do so, we analyze seven surveys from late communist Poland, which highlight the uneven effects of Catholic Church attendance on anti-communist attitudes. We theorize that subnational variation in anti-regime attitudes is driven by the uneven degree of infiltration with so-called Patriot Priests, which, in turn, can be attributed to patterns of migration following WWII. We test the theory of causes of infiltration against competing explanations, including modernization, selection mechanisms and endurance of imperial legacies. Next, show that the communists’ strategy of church infiltration was more effective in areas with the greatest population resettlements and that the effect of this infiltration is consistent with patterns of covert, as opposed to overt repression.

Jan
24
Thursday, January 24, 2019
12:00pm
Marshall D. Shulman Seminar Room, 1219 International Affairs Building (420 W 118th St)

Please join us for a lecture by Alexei Lobov, Director of the State Museum of Vladimir Mayakovsky, including a presentation of materials not included in the exhibition Through the Brooklyn Bridge: Here Stood Mayakovsky, as well as the story of the poet’s triumph and tragedy, and a recitation of Mayakovsky’s poetry.

Through the Brooklyn Bridge: Here Stood Mayakovsky is presented by the Harriman Institute and curated by the State Museum of Vladimir Mayakovsky (Moscow). The exhibit is organized around the poet's journey to America in 1925, drawing on poems and photographs, including portraits of friends, colleagues, and people of art and culture Mayakovsky met during his trip. In addition, it will include rare landscape sketches and drawings from the collection of the State Museum of Vladimir Mayakovsky.

This project is focused on the “American” period of the poet's life, the result of which was more than two dozen poems and his book of essays My Discovery of America. In the United States, the Mayakovsky lectured about Soviet Russia, the new revolutionary art, and gave poetry readings in New York, Cleveland, Detroit, Chicago, Philadelphia, and Pittsburgh. Mayakovsky's long-awaited meeting with his friend David Burliuk took place in New York, where Burliuk, the father of Russian Futurism, lived with his family in the Bronx after leaving the Soviet Union. Upon his return to the USSR, he shared his impressions of America. 

This exhibition also unravels a mystery the poet had kept under wraps: the cryptic word “daughter,”  found on a blank page of his notebook, long haunted inquiring minds and sparked various rumors and hypotheses. But Patricia Thompson solved the mystery by disclosing the love story of her parents, Mayakovsky and Elly Jones.

The significance of Vladimir Mayakovsky as a man of extraordinary genius is invaluable not only for Russia but for the whole world. His controversial, charismatic personality left no one indifferent. He was imitated, admired, and debated. A number of people have tried to explain his phenomenal talent.

Please also join us for the exhibit opening on Wednesday, January 23 at 6:00pm.

Jan
24
Thursday, January 24, 2019
5:30pm - 7:00pm
1512 International Affairs Building (420 W 118th St, 15th floor)

Please join the Harriman Institute and New York University’s Jordan Center for the Advanced Study of Russia for a panel discussion examining the Kremlin’s recent attempts at reforming the pension system in Russia.

This event is supported by a grant from the Carnegie Corporation of New York. It is part of our Russian Studies & Policy event series.

PANELISTS

Kristy Ironside, Assistant Professor in History and Classical Studies at McGill University

Katerina Tertytchnaya, Lecturer in Comparative Politics in the Department of Political Science at University College London

Andrei Kolesnikov, Senior Fellow and Chair of the Russian Domestic Politics and Political Institutions Program at the Carnegie Moscow Center

Moderator: Alexander Cooley, Director of the Harriman Institute, Columbia University

On the heels of securing his fourth nonconsecutive term as president of Russia in March 2018, Vladimir Putin introduced plans to increase the retirement age to 65 from 60 for men and to 63 from 55 for women. The announcement sparked an immediate wave of protests from all corners of Russian society: pensioners, students, systemic political parties and the democratic opposition. Critics pointed out that with a life-expectancy of 66, most Russian men would not live to see retirement under the new system. In an unusual move, Putin appeared on television in August 2018 to personally defend the proposed changes as absolutely necessary in light of Russia’s labor force makeup and long-term budget forecasts. The new legislation passed a month later, but not before damaging Putin’s approval ratings.

Our panel, consisting of a historian, an analyst and a political scientists will put the pension reform and the social response to it in context. Russia’s old-age pension system is one of the last vestiges of the social contract formed between the state and its citizens in the Soviet Union and is, for many Russians, an inviolable guarantee. The beneficiaries of the current system form the bedrock of Putin’s constituency and paying pension arrears was one the crowning achievements of his ascension to power in the early 2000s. Yet the system is in desperate need of reform to address changes in Russia’s economy and demography. Many Russians worry, however, that the reform will be mismanaged and that they will pay into a system that they will never be able to use. As Putin begins his last constitutionally permitted term as president, tough economic decisions loom on the horizon that will require further renegotiation of the relationship between the Russian state and society.

Kristy Ironside is a historian of modern Russia and the Soviet Union. She is currently finishing her first book, tentatively entitled Money and the Pursuit of Communist Prosperity in the Postwar Soviet Union, 1945-1964. This book looks at how money, an ideologically problematic ‘vestige of capitalism,’ was mobilized by the Soviet government in the intertwined projects of recovering from the Second World War’s damage and building a prosperous communist society. This project has spun off articles looking at related economic and social phenomena in Soviet history, exploring the balance of coercion and incentives, Stalinist and Khrushchev-era economic thinking, and the nature of the postwar Soviet welfare state. Her articles have appeared in Kritika: Explorations in Russian and Eurasian History, The Soviet and Post-Soviet ReviewSlavic Review, Europe-Asia Studies, and The Journal of Social History (forthcoming).  

Katerina Tertytchnaya is a political scientist working on protests and authoritarian politics. Her current book project draws on evidence from Putin’s Russia to examine how non-democratic incumbents manage public opinion and deflect blame when performance is poor. Prof. Tertytchnaya’s research has appeared or is forthcoming in the American Political Science ReviewJournal of Politics and Political Behavior

Andrei Kolesnikov is a senior fellow and the chair of the Russian Domestic Politics and Political Institutions Program at the Carnegie Moscow Center. His research focuses on the major trends shaping Russian domestic politics, with particular focus on the fallout from the Ukraine crisis and ideological shifts inside Russian society. Kolesnikov also works with the Gaidar Institute for Economic Policy and is a frequent contributor for VedomostiGazeta.ru, and Forbes.ru. He sits on the board of the Yegor Gaidar Foundation and is a member of the Committee of Civil Initiatives (the Alexei Kudrin Committee).