The Department of Slavic Languages and Literatures at Yale University, which is one of the oldest programs of its kind in the United States, was born of the vision of two of the most remarkable figures in the University’s twentieth-century history. In 1946, William Clyde DeVane, the eminent long-term Dean of Yale College and Professor of English, established the Department at the urging of René Wellek, who was appointed Professor of Slavic and Comparative Literature that year and who was soon to emerge as one of the greatest figures in twentieth-century literary studies. Professor Wellek took over the chairmanship of the Department from Dean DeVane in 1948, and following a series of new appointments in the early 1950s, the Department began its ascent to national prominence.

The current members of the Department continue its traditions of engaging in innovative teaching and scholarship on the literatures, languages, and cultures of the Slavic peoples. The Department offers both undergraduate and graduate degrees, with several possible tracks in each, but with a primary emphasis on Russian literature and culture, and especially film.

Slavic department faculty are recognized leaders in their scholarly fields both nationally and internationally, and have established themselves as popular and influential teachers on campus. The Department’s varied course offerings are enriched by the extensive Slavic holdings in the Yale University Library system, which is one of the greatest research collections in the world.


September 2017

Ana Berdinskikh received the Dorris Hastings International Distinguished Engagement Award to study BCS at the 2016 Critical Languages Institute at Arizona State University.

Carlotta Chenoweth spent the summer of 2016 conducting research in Moscow and St. Petersburg for her dissertation, “The Illiterate Text: Soviet Literature and the Aesthetics of Literacy, 1918-1928,” thanks to a Russian Studies Grant. In Fall 2016, she is a Digital Humanities Fellow for the course “Avant-Gardes and Émigrés: Digital Humanities Lab.” She was a Nina Berberova Fellow in 2015-2016.

Anastasia Kostina’s translation of the selected writings of Esfir Shub, the first Soviet woman filmmaker, was published in the Summer 2016 issue of Feminist Media Histories, a special issue on Found Footage: Women Without a Movie Camera.

Isabel Lane recently attended “The Nuclear Proliferation International History Project (NPIHP)’s 2015 Nuclear History Boot Camp,” sponsored by the Wilson Center. 

Jacob Lassin was a 2015-2016 Ronald Muirhead Byrnes Fellow. His article “The Digital City in Post-Soviet Identity Formation: The Case of OurBaku.com” was published in Digital Icons 13 (Spring 2015). He also recently completed the Mellon Foundation Graduate Concentration in the Digital Humanities.

Mina Magda received an ADSEEES Travel Grant to attend the 2016 national ASEEES Convention in Washington, D.C.

Ingrid Nordgaard was an Arnold Fellow in 2015-2016. She recently published “We have been traveling for weeks now” in Palimpsest: Yale Literary and Arts Magazine, and has a forthcoming publication in September 2016, “Documenting/Performing the Wounded Body: Pain and Agency in Works by Boris Mikhailov and Petr Pavlensky” in Contemporaneity: Historical Presence in Visual Culture.

Viktoria Paranyuk was awarded the Russian Studies Program Dissertation Grant for the summer of 2016.

Svetlana Tcareva successfully completed an internship at the State Literary Museum in Moscow in July 2016.  



September 2016

Anna Aydinyan (Ph.D. 2012): Tenure-track at Kenyon College

Alexander Brookes (Ph.D. 2013): Tenure-track at Memorial University of Newfoundland

Cassio De Oliveira (Ph.D. 2014): Tenure-track at Portland State University

Daria Ezerova (Ph.D. 2018 [pending]): VAP at Davidson College

Fabrizio Fenghi (Ph.D. 2016) Tenure-track Brown University

Zakhar Ishov (Ph.D. 2016): Postdoc at Universitat Tubingen

Thomas Keenan (Ph.D. 2017): Slavic librain at Princeton University

Nicholas Kupensky (Ph.D. 2017): Postdoc at Bowdoin College

Mihaela Mihailova (Ph.D. 2017): Postdoc at Michigan State University (Society of Fellows)

Megan Race (Ph.D. 2018 [pending]): Postdoc at Harvard Davis Center

Margarita Safariants (Ph.D. 2012): Tenure-track at St. Olaf College

Vadim Shneyder (Ph.D. 2015): Tenure-Track at UCLA

Raisa Sidenova (Ph.D. 2016): Lecturer (UK equivalent of tenure-track) at Newcastle University

Roman Utkin (Ph.D. 2015): Tenure-track at Wesleyan University