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The Harvard Ukrainian Research Institute has named its fellows for the 2016-2017 academic year. These fellows conduct research in residence at HURI while making use of the extensive resources at Harvard University and connecting with other scholars in the field.

HURI’s fellowship program offers funding for research in Ukrainian studies at all points of an academic career.

The HURI Shklar Fellowship made an invaluable impact on my academic career in more ways than one. First, it enabled me to devote a chunk of time exclusively to writing, which allowed me to make much progress towards finishing my book manuscript. Second, the community at HURI provided a highly stimulating scholarly environment through the weekly speaker series, as well as the opportunity to interact with other fellows and with the HURI faculty and staff. Last but not least, proximity and access to Harvard libraries was a great asset for my research.

-Oxana Shevel
Political scientist, Shklar Fellow 2005-2006

This year’s fellows bring expertise in international relations, history, sociology, ethnic relations, and other fields. HURI is pleased to welcome them to Harvard and looks forward to an engaging and enriching academic year.

Viktoriya Sereda

HURI MAPA Project Research Fellow
Full Year

Victoria Sereda, HURI FellowViktoriya Sereda is an Associate Professor in the Sociology Department at Ukrainian Catholic University in Lviv. Interested in urban sociology, memory studies, nationalism, and identity issues, she is coming to HURI to contribute to the Institute’s MAPA: Digital Atlas of Ukraine project. This project uses the latest information technology to facilitate visual representations of data sets, illuminating the economic, historical, political, and social transformations within Ukraine. Current interactive maps depict information about the Great Famine, Rus’ genealogy, historical Podolia region, and attitudes toward Ukraine’s independence.

Sereda’s experience in sociological research will be a great asset to this project. She has led or participated in more than 30 local and international research projects, employing methodologies of sociological survey, focus group discussions, in-depth interviews, and content and discourse analysis. Her work has been published in six countries, and she is currently leading an interdisciplinary subproject on the transcultural reconceptualization of Ukraine. During her fellowship, she will work on a comparative cross-regional analysis of national identities and historical memory in contemporary Ukraine.

Oleksandr Zaytsev

The Petro Jacyk Distinguished Fellowship in Ukrainian Studies
Fall Semester

Oleksandr Zaytsev, HURI FellowOleksandr Zaytsev comes to HURI from the Ukrainian Catholic University in Lviv, where he is a professor in the Department of Modern and Contemporary History of Ukraine. His work focuses on the political history of interwar Western Ukraine and the intellectual history of Ukrainian integral nationalism. At HURI, he will conduct research to complete a monograph on the Lviv (Vistnyk) period of Dmytro Dontsov’s activities and writings, placing his works in the context of the intellectual and cultural milieu of interwar Galicia, as well as Dontsov’s private and public life.

Through this project, Zaytsev aspires to provoke a discussion in the Ukrainian academic community about the nature of Dontsov’s “active nationalism” and undermine the tendency of seeing it in isolation from the wider context of interwar and wartime European history.

Yaroslav Fedoruk

Ukrainian Studies Fund Fellowship
Fall Semester

Yaroslav Fedoruk, HURI FellowA senior scholar at the Institute of Ukrainian Archeography and Source Studies, National Academy of Sciences of Ukraine, Yaroslav Fedoruk holds a Doctor of Sciences in History. His interests focus on international relations in the mid-17th century, and his current work focuses on how English journalists represented events in Ukraine.

At HURI, he will examine English newspapers from 1654-57, producing a collection of extracts pertaining to events in Ukraine during the last years of Hetman Bohdan Khmelnytsky. It was during this time that Ukraine entered into agreement with Muscovy and Sweden invaded Poland-Lithuania, making the time period a decisive one in the history of Central and Eastern Europe. Fedoruk has observed that while English newspapers describe these events in great detail, Ukrainian scholarly literature tends to overlook them as a source and focus instead on the state papers of John Thurlow, a secretary to Oliver Cromwell’s council of state. The newspapers provide important information about the Okhmativ campaign, Cossack raids on the Black Sea coast, the Treaty of Vilnius, and more.

Olga Bertelsen

Ukrainian Studies Fund Fellowship
Spring Semester

Olga Bertelsen, HURI FellowOlga Bertelsen is a postdoctoral scholar at Columbia University. Her many research interests include Ukrainian and Russian histories and cultures, the intelligentsia and the state, genocides, empires, national security, Ukrainian and Russian literatures (Soviet period), and memory politics.

In the spring, she will conduct research at HURI focusing on human behavior during the 1932-33 Famine in Soviet Ukraine, the Holodomor. Using archival documents and ethnographic findings, her study will analyze how people were transformed under extreme starvation and the threat of state violence, transformations that included psychological and psychiatric changes, on both individual and collective levels. While the changes encompass examples of heroism as well as violence, many Ukrainians became psychiatrically disturbed and capable of killing in order to survive. Additionally, her study will illuminate emotions and attitudes toward Soviet power and will reconstruct a conflicted portrait of the Ukrainian peasant.

Daniel Fedorowycz

The Eugene and Daymel Shklar Research Fellowships in Ukrainian Studies
Spring Semester

Daniel Fedorowycz, HURI FellowCurrently a doctoral candidate at the University of Oxford, Daniel Fedorowycz is interested in ethnic conflict, political violence, ethnic minority organizations, state-minority group relations, and World War II Eastern European history.

At HURI, he’ll conduct research on the Polish-Ukrainian conflict in the course of World War II , specifically examining how villages and neighbors turned on each other. While ethnic conflict literature tends to focus on factors explaining the onset of conflict, Fedorowycz intends to study the spatial distribution of violence within a conflict, noting that territories with similar characteristics often display very different levels of violence. Additionally, violence tends to occur in specific locales, rather than encompassing entire states. His research will include a micro-comparative analysis of about 250 villages in the interwar Polish county of Volodymyr-Volyns’kyi, giving strong attention to the events leading up to the 1943 ethnic cleansing of Volhynia.

Stella Ghervas

The Jaroslaw and Nadia Mihaychuk Postdoctoral Research Fellowships in Ukrainian Studies
Spring Semester

Stella Ghervas, HURI FellowStella Ghervas, an assistant professor at the University of Alabama at Birmingham, is working on a book project entitled, Calming the Waters? A New History of the Black Sea, 1774-1920s. Starting from the Russian expansion toward today’s coastal Ukraine and ending with the collapse of the Russian and Ottoman dynastic empires, her transnational study challenges the assumption that the Black Sea region is ontologically a playground for competition between nationalisms and frozen conflicts. Instead, by examining a period when the sea was “thawed,” she will explore the transformations caused by the influx of new populations, the surge of the economy, the development of cities, and the subsequent effect on populations that were previously settled there.

At HURI, Ghervas will work specifically on the aspects of the project that are connected with the coast of modern-day Ukraine, from Crimea to the mouth of the Danube, and its immediate vicinities.

Sait Ocakli

The Eugene and Daymel Shklar Research Fellowships in Ukrainian Studies
Spring Semester

Sait Ocakli, HURI FellowCurrently an instructor at Bilkent University in Ankara, Turkey, Sait Ocakli comes to HURI in the spring to conduct postdoctoral research on the warfare and diplomacy of the Crimean Khanate. Focusing specifically on the second reign of Khan Mehmed Giray IV (1654-1666), Ocakli aims to analyze the attitude of the leader toward the Muscovite-Polish conflict over Ukraine after the Treaty of Pereyaslav. This was the first time the Cossacks switched their allegiance from the Poland-Lithuanian Commonwealth to Muscovy.

Ocakli’s research interests include the diplomatic history of Eastern Europe (15th-18th centuries), the Golden Horde Empire and its successors. At HURI, he will examine historiographies, including how the Treaty of Pereyaslav was interpreted, and unpublished diplomatic correspondence of Mehmed Giray and his entourage with Ukrainian Cossacks, Poland-Lithuania, Muscovy, and the Ottoman Porte.

For additional information about research fellowships and projects at HURI, visit or contact Tamara Nary.