Headshot of Lynne Viola

Lynne Viola

Professor; Centre for European, Russian and Eurasian Studies






Room 112N, 1 Devonshire Place


Professor Viola is a specialist in twentieth century Russian history, focusing on political and social history.  Her research interests include women, peasants, political culture, and Stalinist terror.  She is the author of a some thirty articles and four books – The Best Sons of the Fatherland: Workers in the Vanguard of Soviet Collectivization (1987); Peasant Rebels Under Stalin: Collectivization and the Culture of Peasant Resistance (1996); The War Against the Peasantry, 1927-1930 (2005); and The Unknown Gulag: The Lost World of Stalin’s Special Settlements (2007). She is also the editor or co-editor of A Researcher’s Guide to Sources of Soviet Social History in the 1930s (1990) (with Sheila Fitzpatrick); Russian Peasant Women (1992), (with Beatrice Farnsworth); Kollektivizatsiia i krest’ianskoe soprotivlenie na Ukraine: noaibr’ 1929-mart 1930 [Collectivization and Peasant Resistance in Ukraine, November 1929-March 1930](1997) (with Valerii Vasil’ev); Riazanskaia derevnia v 1929-1930 gg.: khronika golovokhruzheniia [The Riazan Countryside in 1929-1930: A Chronicle of Dizzyiness] (1998) (with S. Zhuravlev, T. McDonald, and A. Mel’nik); Tragediia sovetskoi derevni 1927-37: dokumenty i materialy [The Tragedy of the Soviet Countryside, 1927-37: Documents and Materials] in 5 volumes (1999-2003) (with V.P. Danilov and R.T. Manning); and Contending with Stalinism: Soviet Power and Popular Resistance in the 1930s (2002).

She is currently working on a book exploring issues related to the topic of perpetrators of Stalin’s terror. She is the recipient of grants and fellowships from the National Endowment for the Humanities, Social Science Research Council, the American Council of Learned Societies, the Social Science and Humanities Research Council, Connaught, IREX, John Simon Guggenheim Foundation, the Harry Frank Guggenheim Foundation the Mellon Fund and the Killam Fund. In 2011, she was appointed a University Professorship and in 2014, she was made a fellow of the Royal Society of Canada.


Ph. D Princeton University, (1984)

M. A Princeton University (1980)

B.A. Barnard College, Columbia University (1978)

Awards and distinctions

Fellow of the Royal Society, 2014
Harry Frank Guggenheim Fellowship, 2013-14
University Professorship, 2011
Fowler Hamilton Visiting Research Fellowship at Christ Church, Oxford, 2010
Honourable Mention, “Best Book by A Women in Slavic Studies,” Heldt Prize Association of Women in Slavic Studies (for unknown Gulag), 2007
Killam Research Fellowship 2004 and 2005
John Simon Guggenheim Fellowship, 2003
Wallace K. Ferguson Prize, Honourable Mention for Peasant Rebels Under Stalin, 1997
NDean’s Excellence Award, 1997, 1998 (and other years)
University of Toronto Arts and Sciences Outstanding Teaching Award, 1997
Listed in Canadian Who’s Who for 1996-2010

selected Publications

The Best Sons of the Fatherland: Workers in the Vanguard of Soviet Collectivization (NY: Oxford University Press, 1987; paperback edition, 1989).

Peasant Rebels Under Stalin: Collectivization and the Peasant Culture of Resistance (NY: Oxford University Press, 1996).

Contending with Stalinism: Soviet Power and Popular Resistance in the 1930s (Ithaca, NY: Cornell University Press, 2002).

The Tragedy of the Soviet Countryside: Stalin’s War Against the Peasantry, tr. Steve Shabad (New Haven: Yale University Press,2005). A volume in Yale’s Annals of Communism series and Yale Agrarian Studies series.

The Unknown Gulag: The Lost World of Stalin’s Special Settlements (NY: Oxford University Press, 2007).


History of Twentieth-Century Russia
Woman and the Russian Revolution
In the Soviet Archives. Text and History.
Everyday Stalinism
Stalinism and After. Beyond Cold War History






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