Alison Smith

Professor, Department of History
Affiliated Faculty, Centre for European, Russian, and Eurasian Studies
Headshot of Alison Smith


Main Bio

Alison K. Smith is Professor and Chair of History at the University of Toronto. She has published widely on the history of social estates in tsarist Russia and on the history of food in Russia, culminating in Cabbage and Cuisine: A History of Food in Russia (Reaktion, 2021). Her current research uses a focus on one particular region — the imperial palace of Gatchina and its surrounding area — to examine the ways that Russia was governed and administered, ranging from the lives of the Romanovs themselves to townspeople and peasants to outsiders like vagrants and foreign specialists. Her latest publication out of this project is a chapter in a volume co-edited with Matthew Romaniello and Tricia Starks, The Life Cycle of Russian Things: From Fish Guts to Fabergé (Bloomsbury, 2021).

Professor Smith also is an occasional blogger at Russian History Blog .