UCL School of Slavonic and East European Studies (SSEES)


Dr James Ryan visiting SSEES

21 February 2023

Dr James Ryan is visiting SSEES from 20 February until 17 March 2023.

Dr James Ryan

Dr James Ryan is Senior Lecturer in Modern European (Russian) History at Cardiff University and, for the academic year 2022-23, a Gerda Henkel Stiftung Research Scholar.

While visiting SSEES, Dr Ryan will pursue three interrelated strands of research related to his ongoing book manuscript, provisionally titled The Limits of Utopia: An Intellectual History of Soviet State Violence, 1917-1939. First, he is working on the period of the ‘great break’ in Soviet history (1927-30), piecing together the intellectual shifts that took place during these years, which resulted in an explosion of violence and upheaval. Second, he is completing an article on the complex dynamic of secrecy, transparency, and repression in interwar Soviet history. And third, he is finishing an article on The Chip (Shchepka), an unpublished novella written in 1923 by the Siberia-based author Vladimir Zazubrin. This horrifying little text offers fascinating insight into early Soviet literary treatment of such themes as violence, faith, doubt, despair, identity, and mental illness.

More information about James and previous Visiting Scholars.