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INTERSECTIONALITY IN FOCUS: Transforming the Academy: Intersectionality and Change in Slavic, East European, and Eurasian Studies

February 4, 2022 @ 1:00 pm - 2:30 pm


Sibelan Forrester (Swarthmore College) serves as the Past President of the Association for Slavic, East European, and Eurasian Studies and is the Susan W. Lippincott Professor of Modern and Classical Languages and Russian at Swarthmore College. Professor Forrester’s primary academic specialty is Russian poetry of the 20th and 21st centuries, with significant secondary specializations in folklore, South Slavic literature and culture, and women’s and gender studies; she also teaches and conducts research on science fiction and literary translation (theory and practice). Her co-edited volume Times of Mobility: Transnational Literature and Gender in Translation was recently published by Central European University Press. Professor Forrester has held fellowships from the National Endowment for the Humanities and the Social Science Research Council; her translations have won the Heldt Prize twice for Best Translation in Russian, East European and Eurasian Women’s Studies and the AATSEEL Award for Best Scholarly Translation. Professor Forrester has served the field through numerous professional organizations, including as President of the Executive Council of the Association of Departments of Foreign Languages in the Modern Language Association) and as President of the American Association of Teachers of Slavic and East European Languages. She is the current editor of the journal Russian Studies in Literature and is on the editorial board of the Slavic and East European Journal.

Carina Karapetian Georgi (Antelope Valley College) is Chair of Social and Behavioral Sciences at Antelope Valley College and also serves as a faculty member in the Department of Sociology. Karapetian Giorgi currently focuses on community partnerships in the greater Antelope Valley which aim to support students of color, low-income, first generation, and homeless student populations. They are currently working on two LGBTQ biographies. Karapetian Giorgi received their Ph.D. in sociology and their M.A. in queer studies: gender, sexuality, and culture. They have written, lectured, and delivered presentations on topics such as Armenian female fedayi fighters, tasseography, the Armenian genocide from a feminist perspective, and transnational Armenian female migrant laborers.

Joseph Lenkart (University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign) is Head of Slavic Reference Service (SRS) and Associate Professor at the University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign.  He provides vision and leadership for SRS and the Library Summer Research Laboratory program in support of Russian, East European and Eurasian Studies (REEES) scholars. He is the chair of the Committee on Libraries and Information Resources (CLIR), Association for Slavic, East European, & Eurasian Studies.

Pawel Lewicki (Europa University, Viadrina) is Lecturer and Researcher at the Chair for Comparative Central European Studies of the European University Viadrina in Frankfurt (Oder). He studied ethnology and cultural anthropology at the University of Warsaw and gained his PhD at the Institute for European Ethnology of the Humboldt University in Berlin. His research interests cover embodiments of “Europe” and Europeanization from race-critical, gender and postcolonial and (post)imperial perspective. He published an ethnography titled EU-space and the Euroclass: Modernity, Nationality and Lifestyle among Eurocrats in Brussels (Columbia University Press, 2018) and co-edited a special issue on “European bodies” for the Anthropological Journal of European Cultures. The special issue titled “Struggles over Europe: Postcolonial East/West Dynamics of Race, Gender and Sexuality” (Intersections, Vol. 6, Nr 3) that he co-edited with Randi Gressgard and Rafal Smoczynski explores from postcolonial and intersectional perspectives the mutual re-production of East and West through the entanglements and racist dynamics embedded in Europeanization processes. Pawel’s current research is on HIV positive migrants, struggles for (EU) citizenship, and the emergence of grey zones in the EU.

Olga Povoroznyuk (University of Vienna) is Postdoctoral Researcher, Research Coordinator and Lecturer at the Department for Social and Cultural Anthropology, University of Vienna. She received her doctoral degree from and previously worked as a Senior Researcher at the Institute for Ethnology and Anthropology, Russian Academy of Sciences, Moscow. Her research interests include the issues of post-socialism and postcolonialism, infrastructure and development, identity, ethnicity and indigeneity, population dynamics, and gender relations in Russia (especially, in Siberia) and in the Circumpolar North. Dr. Povoroznyuk is an author of a book on post-Soviet socio-economic and cultural transformations in indigenous (Evenki) communities, and a number of peer-reviewed articles published in social science and anthropology journals. She also edited and contributed to a recently published popular science book along the lines of her research on post-socialist infrastructure of the Baikal-Amur Mainline in East Siberia. Currently, Olga Povoroznyuk is coordinating a large EU project on the role of transport infrastructure in habitation and sustainable community development in the Arctic and teaches social anthropology at the University of Vienna. Being member of professional associations in the fields of social anthropology, social sciences and interdisciplinary research, she is visible at international scientific events. She is also engaged in research dissemination and collaboration with non-academic institutions in Austria, Russia, and beyond.


From Critical Pedagogies to Research Practice and Public Engagement in Slavic, East European, and Eurasian Studies

The COVID-19 pandemic has exposed and exacerbated pre-existing institutional, structural, and systemic discrimination and inequality in societies across the world. Furthermore, continued campaigns against gender and LGBTQ equity in Eastern Europe and Eurasia, racism in the United States, and the social protest movements that rose in response to such exclusionary projects have reinforced calls for intersectional approaches in Slavic, East European, and Eurasian Studies (SEEES). Class, ethnicity and race, dis/ability, gender and sexuality, and other identity markers interweave to produce inequality differently in Eastern Europe and Eurasia than in the Americas or Western Europe. Yet, it is these very differences that provide a rich ground for intellectual conversations in our field.



Center for East European and Russian/Eurasian Studies, University of Chicago
Center for Russia, East Europe, and Central Asia, University of Wisconsin-Madison
Center for Russian, East European, and Eurasian Studies, University of Kansas
Center for Russian, East European, and Eurasian Studies, University of Michigan
Center for Russian, East European, and Eurasian Studies, University of Texas at Austin
Center for Slavic, East European, and Eurasian Studies, Ohio State University
Davis Center for Russian and Eurasian Studies, Harvard University
Inner Asian and Uralic National Resource Center, Indiana University, Bloomington
Robert F. Byrnes Russian and East European Institute, Indiana University, Bloomington
Institute of Slavic, East European, and Eurasian Studies, University of California, Berkeley
Russian, East European, and Eurasian Center, University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign


February 4, 2022
1:00 pm - 2:30 pm
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