Anna Krylova, Associate Professor
Anna Krylova is Associate Professor of Modern Russian History. She works on twentieth-century Russia and the challenges posed in envisioning and building a socialist alternative in the age of industrial and post-industrial modernity and globalization. Questions of historical theory, gender theory, and practice in contemporary historical writing propel her work, with a special focus on historiographical problematics in Western scholarship on the Soviet Union and within the emergent field of transnational socialist history.
In addition to articles and book chapters, she is the author of Soviet Women in Combat: A History of Violence on the Eastern Front (Cambridge University Press, 2010) which won the 2011 Herbert Baxter Adams Prize of the American Historical Association. Soviet Women in Combat interrogates historical and theoretical ways of conceptualizing heterosexual subjectivity, sexual difference, and gender forms by investigating the unprecedented historical phenomenon of Soviet young women’s en masse volunteering for World War II combat. Rather than reducing the story of Soviet women in combat to a narrative of desperate emergency on the Eastern front, the book asks how Stalinist Russia, reputedly a patriarchal society, managed to merge notions of soldierhood, womanhood, and motherhood first into a conceivable and then realizable agenda for the cohort of young female volunteers and for its prewar society and wartime armed forces. It pursues this question through such varied sources as state and military records, prewar and wartime press, fiction, films, interviews, diaries, as well as memoirs and letters written by men and women. So doing, the book advances reading strategies that allow us not only to trace the cultural tenacity of gender conventions, but also to analyze the possibilities for reimagining gender and heterosexual subjectivity other than along imperatives of oppositional and asymmetrical binarity. Soviet Women in Combat reveals a world in which neither women nor their male contemporaries had to consider the “woman soldier” to be an oxymoron. The book, as well, posits a question to the field of Women’s and Gender history about the definitional parameters of its foundational category––gender––and the kind of conceptual and interpretive habits such parameters have produced.
Her article “The Tenacious Liberal Subject in Soviet Studies” which appeared in the first Winter 2000 issue of Kritika has since been used in graduate courses. The article is an attempt to grasp the metahistory of US Soviet and Russian studies through the conception of “Soviet man” in American scholarly writings and popular culture.
- Contact Info:
|Office Location: ||209 Carr Building|
|Office Phone: ||(919) 684-3871 |
|Email Address: |
Teaching (Fall 2015):
- HISTORY 495S.01, SENIOR THESIS SEMINAR
- Carr 229, W 03:05 PM-05:35 PM
- HISTORY 790S-13.01, METHODS & THEORY (TOP)
- Carr 229, Tu 04:40 PM-07:10 PM
- Office Hours:
- Fridays, noon-1 PM
|PhD||Johns Hopkins University||2001|
|MA in History||The Johns Hopkins University||1998|
|MA in Political Science||The Johns Hopkins University||1995|
European and Russia
Global Transnational History
- Research Interests:
Anna Krylova works on twentieth-century Russia and the challenges posed in envisioning and building a socialist alternative in the age of industrial and post-industrial modernity and globalization. Questions of historical theory, gender theory, and practice in contemporary historical writing propel her work, with a special focus on methodological and historiographical problematics in gender history and Western scholarship on the Soviet Union. She is the author of Soviet Women in Combat: A History of Violence on the Eastern Front (Cambridge University Press, 2010) which was awarded the 2011 Herbert Baxter Adams Prize of the American Historical Association.
Her current interests lie in gender theory and methodology, more specifically, in the critical interrogation of the theorization and making of the gender category since the 1970s. She is preparing a collected volume, The Practice of History in the Twenty-First Century, featuring essays accessing of what has happened to the practice of history after the theoretical and epistemological turmoil of the 1980s-1990s.
Her new book project, “Socialist Imaginaries of the Soviet Century,” engages the current academic and popular conversation about social justice, economic responsibility, and individual self-realization in modern industrial societies that has been informed by an explicit and implicit comparison between capitalist and socialist modernities of the 20th century. This conversation has been dependent on historical analysis of Soviet socialism which has been worked out largely in relation to the Soviet Union’s experience with Stalinism and its two preceding decades. This book project aims at disrupting the dominant vision of Soviet socialism as conceptually reducible to the first half of the 20th century. It aims to make possible a new cultural history of Soviet Russia by historicizing the ways in which normative conceptions of socialist society, sociality and self evolved in Russia and the Soviet Union from the First Russian Revolution into the postwar and post-Stalinist years.
Awards and Honors
Fellow, National Humanities Center, 2013-2014.
Member, School of Historical Studies, Institute for Advanced Study, Spring Term, 2013.
2011 Herbert Baxter Adams Prize of the American Historical Association, awarded for the best first book in European history.
2008-2009 Mellon Faculty Book Manuscript Workshop Fellowship, John Hope Franklin Humanities Institute, Duke University.
2006-2010 Hunt Family Assistant Professor of History, Duke University.
2005-2002 Post-Doctoral Fellowship, Davis Center for Russian and Eurasian Studies, Harvard University.
1998-1999 Social Science Research Council Dissertation Write-up Grant.
1999 Stulman Graduate Student, Department of History, Johns Hopkins University.
1997-1998 IREX Individual Advanced Research Opportunities Fellowship.
1997-1998 Pre-Dissertation Fellowship Award, Association for Women in Slavic Studies.
- Current Ph.D. Students
- James Nealy
- Nina Arutyunyan
- Rachel Bessner
- Representative Publications
- A. Krylova, Soviet Women in Combat: A History of Violence on the Eastern Front (Cambridge University Press)
- A. Krylova, “Soviet Modernity: Stephen Kotkin and The Bolshevik Predicament”,
Contemporary European History
- A. Krylova, “Neither Erased nor Remembered: Soviet “Women Combatants” and Cultural Strategies of Forgetting In Soviet Russia, 1940s-1980s",
in Histories of the Aftermath: The European Postwar in Comparative Perspective, edited by Frank Biess and Robert G. Moeller
(2010), Berghahn Books
- A. Krylova, Identity, Agency, and the First Soviet Generation,
in Stephen Lovell (ed.), Generations in 20th Century Europe
(2007), Palgrave Macmillan
- Beyond the Spontaneity-Consciousness Paradigm: 'Class Instinct' as a Promising Category of Historical Analysis,
(Spring, 2003) [pdf]
- 'Healers of Wounded Souls': The Crisis of Private Life in Soviet Literature and Society, 1944-46,
Journal of Modern History
(June, 2001) [pdf]
- The Tenacious Liberal Subject in Soviet Studies,
Kritika: Explorations in Russian and Eurasian History, vol. 1 no. 1
(Winter, 2000) [pdf]