Lyudmila B. Austin

Ph.D. Candidate

Region: Russia, Eastern Europe, & Eurasia

Field: Modern Russia; Imperial Russia; Social Theory: Modern Europe; Women, Gender, and Sexuality

Languages: Russian, Ukrainian

Dissertation Committee: Dr. Lewis Siegelbaum (chair); Dr. Matthew Pauly; Dr. Aminda Smith; Dr. Sean Forner


I am a historian of modern Russia, Eurasia, and the Soviet Union with research interests in migration, nationalism, nationality policy, and national identity. My dissertation, “From Internationalism to Displacement: Minoritized Communities in the Formerly Soviet Southern Tier,” analyzes the conflict between migration, Soviet institutions, and nation-building in the USSR’s southern tier (primarily Central Asia and the Caucasus). It draws on letters and party and government documents from district, regional, and federal archives; newspapers; Soviet periodicals; the popular press; and more than a dozen oral interviews.

My research and study has been supported by a nine-month Stephen F. Cohen-Robert C. Tucker Dissertation Research Fellowship, a nine-month American Councils Academic Fellowship in Russia, Foreign Language and Area Studies Fellowships (FLAS), Title VIII Fellowships through Indiana University Bloomington and the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign, and Michigan State University.

I received a B.A. in History with a Concentration in International Relations from Boston University, an M.A. in History from Eastern Michigan University, and I have studied at the University of Michigan, Harvard University, and the Herzen State Pedagogical University in St. Petersburg, Russia.

My article, “As the Forest is Chopped, the Chips Fly: The Fall of Soviet Internationalism and Late Perestroika’s ‘Refugee’ Problem, 1988-1990,” is forthcoming in Slavic Review.