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Ivan Kurilla

Former Short-Term Scholar


    June 1, 2002 — July 1, 2002

    Professional affiliation

    Professor, History and International Relations; Director, Department Development Partnership Program, Academic Director of the IMARES program, European University at St. Petersburg, Russia

    Wilson Center Projects

    Russian-American Relations from the 1830s to the 1860s.

    Full Biography

    Ivan Kurilla is a Professor of History and International Relations at European University, St. Petersburg. His primary field of interest is the history of U.S.-Russian relations, especially during the American antebellum and Civil War periods. In addition, he has organized workshops, published articles, and edited volumes on the use of history, historical memory, and historical politics in Russia and the post-Soviet space. Dr. Kurilla has also published articles on relations between the state and society in contemporary Russia.

    After graduating from Volgograd State University in 1991, Dr. Kurilla defended his two dissertations on American history (kandidatskaya in 1996 and doktorskaya in 2005) at the Institute of World History, the Russian Academy of Sciences.

    Dr. Kurilla was a Regional Scholar (1997) and a Short-Term Scholar (2002) at the Wilson Center's Kennan Institute. He is the author of five books, including Zaklyatye druzia: Istoria mneniy, fantazii, kontaktov, vzaimo(ne)ponimania Rossii i SShA (Frenemies: History of opinions, phantasies, contacts, mutual (mis)understanding of Russia and the USA) (Moscow: New Literary Observer, 2018), Istoria ili Proshloe v natoyashchem (History, or past in present) (St. Petersburg: EU Press, 2017), Zaokeanskie partnery: Amerika i Rossiya v 1830-1850-e gody (Partners across the ocean: The United States and Russia, 1830s–1850s) (Volgograd, 2005), “Voiti v krug velikikh derzhav...”: Daniel Webster i vneshnyaya politika SShA v seredine 19-go veka (“Enter the circle” of great powers: Daniel Webster and foreign policy of the USA in the middle of the 19th century) (Volgograd, 1997), and is co-editor (with Victoria I. Zhuravleva ) of Russian/Soviet Studies in the United States, Amerikanistika in Russia: Mutual Representations in Academic Projects (Lanham, Md.: Lexington Books, 2016) and (with Henry Hale) of Rossiya v 2000-e: Stereoskopicheskii vzglyad (Russia in the 2000s: Stereoscopic view) (Moscow, 2011).

    His articles have been published in the leading Russian historical journals, as well as in the Journal of American History, Demokratizatsiya, Journal of Cold War Studies, Problems of Post-Communism, and Nationalities Papers. In 2010 he translated into Russian the classic monograph by Perry Anderson, Lineages of the Absolutist State.

    Dr. Kurilla serves on the editorial board of Amerikanskii ezhegodnik (American Yearbook) of Moscow’s Russian Academy of Sciences. He is a member of the council of the Russian Society for U.S. History Studies and a member of the council of the Free Historical Society.

    Previous Terms

    September - December 1997: " Russian-American Relations -- 1848-1855" - An examination of Russian-American relations during the disintegration of the Vienna system of international relations between the European revolutions of 1848 and the start of the Crimean War (1853). This project assesses whether the two countries successfully cooperated in creating new diplomatic conventions.