Research Team

Ivan Simic (PI) earned his PhD in history at University College London. He also has an MA in Modern Global History from the University of Bremen in Germany. Prior to joining Charles University, he worked and taught at Carleton University in Canada. Before that, he has held research fellowships at Yale University and the University of Graz and teaching positions at Goldsmiths and UCL. He has published a book on Soviet Influences on Postwar Yugoslav Gender Policies (Palgrave, 2018) as well as numerous articles on Yugoslav gender history in the most prestigious history journals.

Simic’s research engages with gender history in Eastern Europe, and the transnational flow of ideas that informed gender policies. His recent book Soviet Influences on Postwar Yugoslav Gender Policies published by Palgrave sheds new light on how Soviet ideas about gender shaped Yugoslav society. However, it also reveals a compelling story of a struggle to enforce gender equality in communist terms. Deeply entrenched patriarchal attitudes undermined Yugoslav communists’ ability to challenge gender norms, causing many disputes and struggles within the Communist Party over the meanings and application of Soviet gender models. By uncovering the complex relationships between individuals within the Yugoslav and Soviet communist parties, their education, worldviews, personal contacts, as well as their methods of governance, his book offers insights into the mechanics of transfer of gender policies. Finally, his book and articles published in top peer-reviewed journals and edited volumes demonstrate the importance of strong theoretical foundations anchored by thorough archival research.

Andreja Mesarič (Postdoctoral Fellow) – completed a PhD in Ethnology and Cultural Anthropology at the University of Ljubljana, Slovenia, in 2011. Her thesis on women’s experiences of Islamic revival in Bosnia-Herzegovina paid considerable attention to discourses on Muslim women in the inter-war and communist periods. In 2009-2010, she held a fellowship at the Centre for Advanced Study Sofia, Bulgaria, where she conducted research about Muslim women in the discourse of Bosnian modernist reformers. She has published her research about Muslim women in Bosnia in an edited volume on the revival of Islam in the Balkans edited by Arolda Ebasani and Olivier Roy, and in peer reviewed journals (Nationalities Papers, the Anthropological Journal of European Cultures, and a forthcoming article in Slavic Review).

Jelena Gajic (Researcher) is a doctoral candidate in the Department of German and Slavic Studies at Charles University. Her dissertation explores the education of Muslim girls during the interwar era and the socialist transformation in Yugoslavia. Before her PhD studies, she earned two master’s degrees: one in sociology and social anthropology from Central European University in Budapest, and another in sociolinguistics from the University of Belgrade.

Valerija Korabljova is Senior Researcher at Charles University, Department of Russian and East European Studies. She received her habilitation in 2015 from Taras Shevchenko National University of Kyiv, where till recently she worked as Professor of Philosophy. Her research interests include post-Communist transformations in Ukraine and East Central Europe with a specific focus on mass protests and nation-building. She has been holding a number of fellowships in international institutions: at Stanford University (2014-15), the Institute for Human Sciences (IWM, 2015-16), University of Warsaw (2016-17), Charles University in Prague (2017), University of Basel (2018). Her latest book Social Meanings of Ideology (Kyiv University, 2014) covers ideological transformations of European modernity, the Maidan Uprising being a particular case in point. In 2019 she is publishing the chapter “Euromaidan and the 1989 legacy: Solidarity in action?” in “The Long 1989: Decades of Global Revolution” (CEU Press); and the chapter “Contemporary Ukraine: Borderland – Bloodland – Neverland?” in “Cultural Change in the New Europe and Central Asia” (Springer). Dr. Korablyova has taught courses and given lectures at the University of Basel, Charles University, University of Vienna, and Stanford University. She has actively presented her research findings on a number of international conferences (including keynote speeches) and other public fora.

Radomir Mokryk graduated from the Faculty of Philosophy of the University of Ivan Franko in Lviv, a field of culturology, a diploma with honours. In the years 2014-2015, he completed a master’s degree at the same faculty, a diploma with honours. Since 2017 he is a Ph.D. student at the Institute of East European Studies, Charles University, Faculty of Arts, Slavonic Literature. Scientific interests include the history of 20th century culture, focusing on the history of Eastern Europe, especially Ukraine. He continues his research activities, among others, as part of the Institute for the Study of Strategic Regions at the Charles University. Since 2017, he has been a member of the Editorial Board of the Cultures of History Forum at the Friedrich-Schiller-Universität Jena (Germany). He participates in the project of the Slavic Institute of the Academy of Sciences of the Czech Republic “Krim -historische, literarische und kulturelle Konnotationen”.

Dajana Vasiljevičová is a PhD student at the programme of Philology of Slavic literatures at Charles University. She focuses on gender representations in literature, cultural and gender studies in relation to Yugoslavia and countries of the eastern bloc. Vasiljevičová earned her MA degree at Charles University in South East Slavonic Studies (Croatian language specialisation) both at the Department of South Slavic and Balkan Studies with Russian studies as a minor. Her thesis explored gender in Croatian literature, mapping out women as a literary trope in Croatian literature. Her current PhD research examines the gendered critical discourse of female authors from late 19th to the mid-20th century in Yugoslavia. She has already published on gender in Croatian literature and literary canon, while she teaches on cultural life in Yugoslavia and post-socialist Transition. In addition to Czech and Serbo-Croatian, she uses Slovenian and Russian.

Slavka Karakusheva is completing her doctoral studies in Cultural/Social Anthropology at Sofia University St. Kli­ment Ohridski. She holds a Master’s degree in Cultural Anthropology and a Bachelor’s degree in Cultural Studies from the same institution. Her research inter­ests focus on population policies in nation-building processes with emphasis on migrations and displacements of the Turkish/Muslim minorities in Bulgaria, on the role of social media in changing migratory experiences and reinforcing transnational connected­ness and on the construction, negotiation and redefinition of cultural heritage boundaries in Bulgaria. She has recently been an associate at the Russian, East European and Eurasian Center, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, and a visiting fellow at the Centre for Southeast European Studies, University of Graz; at the Cultural Politics and Management Research Centre, Istanbul Bilgi University, and at the Department of New Media, Kadir Has University, Istanbul.

Elizaveta Boyko is a master student at the archaeology master program, and she has graduated from the department of history at the Moscow State University. She is helping the project team in locating and digitalising archival material in Moscow.