The Russian, East European, and Eurasian Center awarded the competitive Fisher Fellowship, now in its fourth year, to a 2016 Summer Research Lab (SRL) participant. The fellowship, named after Dr. Ralph Fisher, the founder of SRL and REEEC, and a champion for building the Slavic collection at the University of Illinois Library, provides full domestic travel support, a housing grant, and an honorarium to a scholar with a particularly promising research project. This year’s Fisher Fellow was Anastasiya Boika, Ph.D. Candidate in History at Queen’s University in Canada. While at SRL, she worked on her research project “Greening St. Petersburg: Curing the ailments of city living in late Imperial Russia” and gave a Noontime Scholars lecture entitled “Curing the Ailments of City Living: The Garden City in Late Imperial Russia.”
Boika initially learned about SRL as a first-year PhD student and applied for SRL just as she was leaving for a six-week research trip to Minsk and St. Petersburg. Upon return from the archives in Russia and Belarus, she came to SRL in order to investigate any resources she had missed while in Russia and Belarus as well as to work with the Slavic Reference Service librarians to access additional source material.
Boika’s research at SRL was primarily geared toward obtaining further primary sources for her dissertation. Some of the works she found might also appear in an article, but the main goal was to gain access to some of the periodicals that were not available at her home institution. During her time at SRL, she was able to access a large portion of the publication Zodchii and a few books, including V. Dadonov’s Sotsializm bez politiki and Fedotov’s Illustriovanni’ putevoditel’ po dachnim, vodolechebnim i zhivopisnim mestnostiam Finlandii. She was very grateful for the opportunity to access an array of primary source materials as well as for the chance to give a lecture, meet other researchers, and “work with the amazing staff that make the Summer Research Lab possible.”
Stephanie Chung is a Ph.D. Candidate in Slavic Languages and Literatures at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. Her research interests are in Soviet literature and culture, Russian women’s writing, and Czech literature. She received her B.A. in Plan II Honors/Russian, East European, and Eurasian Studies in 2007; and her M.A. in Slavic Languages and Literatures in 2009 from the University of Texas at Austin. She is currently writing a dissertation on Soviet women’s memoirs as literary and media texts.