This Week

Tuesday, October 22, 2019 to Wednesday, December 18, 2019
Harriman Institute Atrium, 12th Floor International Affairs Building (420 W 118th St)

Exhibit runs October 22 – December 18, 2019. Exhibit hours are Monday–Friday, 9:30AM – 5:00PM excluding university holidays.

Please join us for an opening reception on Tuesday, October 22 at 6:00pm.

The Harriman Institute and the Kolodzei Art Foundation present the exhibit Sergei Volokhov: Theory of Reflection. Selections from the Kolodzei Art FoundationThis exhibition features selected paintings and drawings from the 1980s to the present by prominent Russian artist Sergei Volokhov. These imaginative drawings on specially prepared paper are contemplations by the artist on Russian history and his personal memories.

Sergei Volokhov was born in 1937 in Moscow and currently lives and works in Brussels. He graduated from the Graphic Arts department of the Pedagogical Institute in Moscow. In 1969, Volokhov had his first solo exhibition at Café Blue Bird in Moscow, where a number of Russian nonconformist artists, including Komar and Melamid, Ilya Kabakov, Oleg Vassiliev, Erik Bulatov, and Pyotr Belenok also had their first semi-official shows.

Starting in 1969, Sergei Volokhov participated in many group exhibitions in museums, including the Second Open-Air Exhibition in Izmailovsky Park in 1974; an exhibition at the Palace of Culture Pavilion at VDNkh, Moscow in 1975; Labyrinth, Palace of Youth, Moscow, Warsaw, Hanover, Hamburg, 1989; Russian Art from Lenin to Gorbachev, Botanik, Brussels, Belgium, 1988; Russian Pop Art, The State Tretyakov Gallery, 2005; Times of Change: Art of the 1960-85 in the Soviet Union, State Russian Museum, 2006; Moscow - New York = Parallel Play. From the Kolodzei Art Foundation Collection, National Center for Contemporary Art (NCCA), Moscow, Chelsea Art Museum, New York, 2007 – 2008; This Leads to Fire: Russian Art from Non-Conformism to Global Capitalism. Selections from the Kolodzei Art Foundation, Neuberger Museum of Art, Purchase, New York, 2014-2015.

Volokhov’s works are in many museum collections, including: the State Tretyakov Gallery, Moscow; the Moscow Museum of Contemporary Art, Moscow; Musée d’Ixelles, Brussels; Jane Voorhees Zimmerli Art Museum; The Norton and Nancy Dodge Collection of Nonconformist Art from the Soviet Union, Rutgers University; ART4.RU Contemporary Art Museum, Moscow; and the Kolodzei Art Foundation.

The Kolodzei Art Foundation, Inc., a US-based 501(c)(3) not-for-profit public foundation founded in 1991, organizes exhibitions and cultural exchanges in museums and cultural centers in the United States, Russia and other countries, often utilizing the considerable resources of the Kolodzei Collection of Russian and Eastern European Art, and publishes books on Russian art.

The Kolodzei Collection of Russian and Eastern European Art is one of the largest private art collections, and consists of over 7,000 works, including paintings, drawings, sculptures, photographs, digital art and videos by more than 300 artists from Russia and the former Soviet Union. For additional information visit or email


Sergei Volokhov. The Leader in my Room I, from the series The Theory of Reflection, 1987. Indian ink, mixed media on paper, 17 x 22 in.

Sergei Volokhov. The Leader in my Room II, from the series The Theory of Reflection, 1987. Indian ink, mixed media on paper, 17 x 22 in.

Monday, November 18, 2019
Marshall D. Shulman Seminar Room, 1219 International Affairs Building (420 W 118th St)

Please join the Program on U.S.-Russia Relations at the Harriman Institute for a talk with Jennie L. Schulze, author of Strategic Frames: Europe, Russia, and Minority Inclusion in Estonia and Latvia (University of Pittsburgh Press, 2018).

Strategic Frames analyzes minority policies in Estonia and Latvia following their independence from the Soviet Union. It weighs the powerful influence of both Europe and Russia on their policy choices, and how this intersected with the costs and benefits of policy changes for the politicians in each state.

Prior to EU accession, policymakers were slow to adopt minority-friendly policies for ethnic Russians despite mandates from the European Union. These initiatives faced majority opposition, and politicians sought to maintain the status quo and their positions. As Jennie L. Schulze reveals, despite the credit given to the democratizing influence of European institutions, they have rarely produced significant policy changes alone, and then only when domestic constraints were low. Whenever domestic opposition was high, Russian frames were crucial for the passage of reforms. In these cases, Russia’s activism on behalf of Russian speakers reinforced European frames, providing powerful justifications for reform.

Schulze’s attention to both the strategic framing and counter framing of external actors explains the controversies, delays, and suboptimal outcomes surrounding the passage of “conditional” amendments in both cases, as well as the local political climate postaccession.
Strategic Frames offers a significant reference on recent developments in two former Soviet states and the rapidly evolving spheres of political influence in the postindependence era that will serve students, scholars, and policymakers alike.

Jennie L. Schulze is associate professor of political science at Duquesne University.

Monday, November 18, 2019
1201 International Affairs Building (420 West 118th St, 12th floor)

Please join the East Central European Center at the Harriman Institute for a 50th-anniversary screening of the classic Czech film Witchhammer (Kladivo na čarodějnice, 1969, directed by Otakar Vávra). Introduction and post-film discussion led by Christopher Harwood, Lecturer in Czech at Columbia University and Co-Director of the East Central European Center. Film run time: 103 minutes.

Widely considered the high point of Otakar Vávra's extraordinarily prolific 60-year screenwriting and directorial career, Witchhammer was one of the last politically daring films of the Czechoslovak New Wave period to reach a large domestic audience before the post-1968 invasion "Normalization" regime fully clamped down on freedom of expression. Vávra and his co-screenwriter Ester Krumbachová drew not only from Václav Kaplický's 1963 historical novel of the same name, but also from newly translated transcripts of court proceedings documenting the late 17th-century historical events in northern Moravia on which the novel and film are based. Vávra was inspired to dramatize those early modern witch hunts and present them as a historical precedent and analogy to the Stalinist show trials in Prague in the early 1950s. Czechoslovak audiences in 1970 had no difficulty reading the allegory, even as they dreaded the possibility of a new wave of political trials following the 1968 Soviet invasion.

Tuesday, November 19, 2019
Marshall D. Shulman Seminar Room, 1219 International Affairs Building (420 W 118th St)

Please join the Ukrainian Studies Program and the East Central European Center at the Harriman Institute for a presentation by Ola Hnatiuk of her book Courage and Fear (Academic Studies Press, 2019).

Thoughtful, insightful, exceptionally well researched and moving at the same time, Courage and Fear is the book that plunges the reader into the depth of the history in one of the most contested places on the European map. The city known in the twentieth century as Lemberg, Lwow, Lvov and Lviv, had more nationalities and states that claimed it than the multiplicity of its names might suggest. Ola Hnatiuk manages to weave the personal stories of the Polish, Jewish and Ukrainian citizens of the city with the stories of the powerful states and dictators that tried to control them in the tapestry that reveals the Europe’s tragedies of World War II era in a new scholarly and human dimension. A must read for anyone who wants to understand the past and grasp the essence of the present struggles of Ukraine and its citizens.

—Serhii Plokhy, Harvard University

Ola Hnatiuk is a professor at the University of Warsaw and at the Kyiv-Mohyla Academy. She also served in the Polish diplomatic corps (2006-2010). She is the recipient of numerous awards, including Polonia Restituta (Republic of Poland highest state award), the Antonovych Foundation Award for fostering Polish-Ukrainian cultural cooperation, and the Pruszynski Polish PEN-Club Award. Her book Courage and Fear (originally published in Polish in 2015) received awards in Ukraine and in Poland.

Thursday, November 21, 2019
Marshall D. Shulman Seminar Room, 1219 International Affairs Building (420 W 118th St)

Please join the East Central European Center at the Harriman Institute for a roundtable discussing Contemporary European History 28, a special issue on post-Versailles human and social sciences in Eastern Europe with historian Eugenia Lean, and the co-editors of the volume, Katherine Lebow, Małgorzata Mazurek, and Joanna Wawrzyniak.

With the ‘global turn’ in social and humanistic sciences, one often wonders: does Eastern Europe generate ‘world-scale’ ideas? As historians have critically examined center-periphery frameworks and geopolitical hierarchies in the making of ‘global knowledge,’ the history of science can be now, in principle, be told from any place where people have reimagined their relationship to a shared global modernity. This panel addresses the salience of this insight for modern Eastern Europe, building on a recently published special issue of Contemporary European History. The issue looks at scholarly innovations in Eastern Europe to tell an alternative history of science. Its point of departure is that post-Versailles Eastern, Central and Southeastern Europe was a particularly fertile space for the production and circulation of social scientific ways of knowing. Its aim is to recover the radical and world-scale potential of some of these forgotten projects and scholars to challenge perceptions of Eastern European science as an exclusively ethnocentric project. The issue also considers how the geopolitical shift from a world of empires to one of nation states, which started in the Balkans and East Central Europe in 1918 and continued in dependent and colonial territories after 1945, impacted knowledge globally. Finally, it explores the entanglement between local and global aspects science, bringing together historians driven by broader questions of ‘historical epistemology.’

The special issue of Contemporary European History will be available on-line. The roundtable will focus on the introduction in particular, but also include discussion on the volume as a whole.


Eugenia Lean, Director of the Weatherhead East Asian Institute; Associate Professor of Chinese history, Department of East Asian Languages and Cultures, Columbia University

Katherine Lebow, Professor of Modern History, University of Oxford

Małgorzata Mazurek, Associate Professor of Polish Studies, Department of History, Columbia University

Joanna Wawrzyniak, Associate Professor at the Institute of Sociology, University of Warsaw


Eugenia Lean is an Associate Professor of East Asian Language-Culture and Director of Weatherhead East Asian Institute, Columbia University. She is interested in a broad range of topics in late imperial and modern Chinese history with a particular focus on the history of science and industry, mass media, consumer culture, emotions and gender, as well as law and urban society. She is also interested in issues of historiography and critical theory in the study of East Asia. In her award-winning book Public Passions: The Trial of Shi Jianqiao and the Rise of Popular Sympathy in Republican China (2007), she examines a sensational crime of female passion to document the political role of emotions in the making of a critical urban public. Her newest book, Vernacular Industrialism in China: Local Innovation and Translated Technologies in the Making of a Cosmetics Empire, 1900-1940 (Columbia University Press, 2020), examines the manufacturing, commercial and cultural activities of maverick industrialist Chen Diexian (1879-1940). 

Katherine Lebow is teaching History at the Oxford University. Her research interests are social and cultural history of 20th-century Poland in a global context; everyday life under state socialism; autobiography and testimony, especially 'everyman autobiographies' ca. 1930-50; history of social science. She published Unfinished Utopia: Nowa Huta, Stalinism, and Polish Society, 1949–56 in 2013 and "The Conscience of the Skin: Interwar Polish Autobiography and Social Rights," Humanity 3:3 (2012), which won the 2013 Aquila Polonica Prize for best English-language article in Polish studies. Her current book project, The People Write! Polish Everyman Autobiography from the Great Depression to the Holocaust, addresses the Polish sociological tradition of "social memoir" and its transatlantic echoes before, during, and after World War II.

Małgorzata Mazurek teaches modern history of Poland and East Central Europe at Columbia University. Her interests include history of social sciences, international development, social history of labor and consumption in the twentieth-century Poland and Polish-Jewish studies. She published Society in Waiting Lines: On Experiences of Shortages in Postwar Poland (Warsaw, 2010). Her current book project Economics of Hereness: The Polish Origins of Global Developmentalism 1918-1968 revises the history of developmental thinking by centering east-central Europe as the locality of innovations in economic thought in post-imperial Europe and the postcolonial world. In 2014-2018 she has also been a also a member of an international research project Socialism Goes Global: Cold War Connections between the ‘Second’ and ‘Third World’ 1945-1991 funded by the British Arts and Humanities Research Council.

Joanna Wawrzyniak has been an associate professor the Institute of Sociology of the University of Warsaw since 2008. She was recently a visiting professor at European University Institute, Florence. She is interested in a wide range of topics: East Central Europe, public history, cultural heritage and oral history, and intellectual history. Among her recent books are: co-authored Enemy on Display: The Second World War in Eastern European Museums (2015; Pb2017), co-edited Memory and Change in Europe: Eastern Perspectives (2016, Pb2018), and a monograph Veterans, Victims, and Memory: The Politics of the Second World War in Communist Poland (2015). She is also a co-leader of an international ECHOES project City Museums and Multiple Colonial Pasts, and a a leader of two national research grants on transformation of work and on history of sociology.