Chronicle

Fulbright Fellows
September 1, 2019
The Center for Urban History has the pleasure of hosting three U.S. Fulbright fellows in the 2019-2020 academic year. We are excited that they all study history in different formats: academic research, digital instruments, and projects that explore and preserve cultural heritage in urban areas. We are happy to introduce you these scholars and their projects and look forward to collaboration!

Dr. Mayhill C. Fowler, Associate Professor of History and Director of the Program in Russian, East European, and Eurasian Studies at Stetson University

Fulbright Project "Theater on the Frontlines of Socialism: The Military-Entertainment Complex in Ukraine, 1940s-2000s"

What stories do we tell about war? The military districts on the borders of the Soviet Union sponsored professional theaters: to raise morale, build community, and entertain the troops fighting the Cold War, and war stories were at the heart of their repertory. My book project focuses on one such military theater, on the frontlines of Soviet socialism, performing from Lviv to Kabul: the "Russian Dramatic Theater of the Sub-Carpathian Military District," or Teatr PrikVO. Through this institution, its people, its location, and its audiences, we can trace the shifting role of the public, the state, and the arts in the postwar Soviet Union and in wartime Ukraine today. In addition to researching book project, Mayhill hopes to contribute to the ongoing and important conversation about contemporary theater and the Soviet past through engagement with students, by teaching at the Faculty of Theater Studies and Performing Arts at Ivan Franko State University, and working with Lviv Interactive project and with the Center’s online resources about theater in the postwar period.

Marla Raucher Osborn, Founder and CEO of Rohatyn Jewish Heritage 

The Fulbright U.S. Scholar research award for the 2019-20 academic year will support Marla’s proposal for a "Jewish Cemetery Preservation Demonstration Project for Western Ukraine" - specifically, at the old Jewish cemetery in Rohatyn. The project foresees physical preparation of a portion of the cemetery plus the research and development of detailed designs which can be used to plan and implement rehabilitation of the site, conserve recovered headstone fragments, create informational signage at the site, and promote shared memory. A key component of the project is the documentation of methods, designs, issues, and solutions for use in comparable Jewish heritage projects in the region. The goals of the project are securing and protecting this historic heritage site, helping to re-integrate memory of Rohatyn's former Jewish community into the modern life of the city, and networking with experts and activists in the region to share ideas and resources. 

Ryan Wolfe, History, B.A., Distinguished Major Candidate; Foreign Affairs, B.A., University of Virginia

During the stay in Lviv, Ryan will be researching the impact of Lviv's public memorials, museums, and statues on Ukrainian historical memory and perceptions of national identity. Using digital mapping platforms like ArcGIS as well as survey research, Ryan hopes to illuminate the ways in which spatial factors influence conceptions of nationhood and community within the city. He finds this research to be particularly urgent because of its connection to the study of nationalism, which has emerged as an important topic in both Europe and the United States over the past several years. The rise of right-wing, ultra-nationalist groups in Ukraine and other European countries makes questions regarding nationalism and national identity seem more compelling than ever and serves as an appropriate impetus for Ryan in his research.