Document Actions


The faculty of the Division of Russian and Slavic Languages consists of professors and a varying number of adjunct teachers. The appended vitae provide evidence of the wide variety of interests, publications, and professional activities of the faculty.



Nadya L Peterson (Program Head)

Professor Peterson is a specialist on contemporary Russian prose, women's literature and Chekhov. She is the author of Subversive Imaginations: Fantastic Prose and the End of Soviet Literature, 1970s-1990s, Chekhov's Children: Context and Text in Late Imperial Russia (forthcoming, McGill University Press, 2021), and a number of articles on various aspects of Russian studies, including "The Private 'I' in the Works of Nina Berberova," The Slavic Review, vol. 60, No. 3, Fall 2001; "Dirty Women: Cultural Connotations of Cleanliness in Stalinist Russia," in Russia-Women-Culture (Bloomington: Indiana University Press, 1996); "Games Women Play: the Erotic Prose of Valeriia Narbikova," in Fruits of Her Plume: Essays on Contemporary Russian Women's Culture, ed. by Helena Goscilo (M.E. Sharpe, 1993), and “The Child in Chekhov,” the Russian Review (October, 2014). She is a published translator and editor, most recently of Russian Love Stories (Peter Lang, 2009) and The Witching Hour and Other Plays by Nina Sadur (Academic Studies Press, 2014). Her areas of interests also include Russian culture, history, and Russian education. Prof. Peterson teaches advanced language courses, courses on translation, women's literature, nineteenth and twentieth century Russian literature, as well as courses on Pushkin, Tolstoy, Chekhov and Dostoevsky both in Russian and in English. She is on the faculty of the Doctoral Program in Comparative Literature at the CUNY Graduate Center and has served as the Head of the Russian and Slavic Studies Program at Hunter since 2010.




Yasha Klots, Assistant Professor

Prof. Klots received his Ph.D. in Russian literature from Yale University in 2011 and M.A. from Boston College in 2005. Before joining Hunter College in 2016, he taught at Georgia Institute of Technology, Williams College and Yale University. He was also a Humboldt Foundation Fellow at the Research Center for East European Studies at the University of Bremen, Germany. His research interests include book history, Russian and East European émigré literature and print culture, contemporary Russian poetry, linguistic anthropology, bilingualism and literary translation. In addition, Prof. Klots studies Gulag narratives (Varlam Shalamov in particular), urbanism, the mythology of St. Petersburg and representation of other cities in Russian literature. He is the author of articles on Varlam Shalamov, Boris Pasternak, Joseph Brodsky, Lev Loseff, Vladimir Nabokov, Marina Tsvetaeva, Ivan Bunin and Nina Berberova, Russian children's poetry and New York City in Russian literature. In 2010, he published Joseph Brodsky in Lithuania (St. Petersburg: Perlov Design Center; in Russian), and co-translated, with Ross Ufberg, Tamara Petkevich's Memoir of a Gulag Actress (DeKalb: Northern Illinois UP, 2010). His most recent book is Poets in New York: On City, Language, Diaspora (Moscow: NLO, 2016; in Russian), which includes his introduction and annotated interviews with 16 Russian and East European poets. Klots is currently working on completing his monograph Tamizdat, the Cold War and Contraband Russian Literature (1960-1970s) devoted to the circulation, reception and first publications of manuscripts from the Soviet Union in the West. At Hunter, Yasha Klots teaches a variety of courses on nineteenth- and twentieth-century Russian literature and culture, Russian theater, urban mythology, Gulag literature, and immigrant narratives. He is the director of Tamizdat Project, a public scholarship initiative with an international community of student volunteers.




Elizabeth Klosty Beaujour (Retired)

Professor Beaujour is the author of The Invisible Land: The Artistic Imagination of Iurii Olesha, and of Alien Tongues: Bilingual Russian Writers of the "First" Emigration. She has contributed a number of chapters to collective books and is the author of articles on the relationship between architecture and Russian literature, on Modern Russian Literature, and on bilingual writers. Her current areas of interest include Nabokov, the interaction of French and Russian literature, Russian women writers, and writers who have worked in more than one language. She is on the faculty of the Doctoral Program in Comparative Literature at the CUNY Graduate Center. Over the years, she has served the College in many ways, having been Acting Provost and Chair of the Academic Senate as well as having been the long-term chair of the College's interdisciplinary Thomas Hunter Honors Program.




Emil A. Draitser (Retired)

Professor Draitser is a scholar and author whose works have appeared extensively both in Russian and English. He is the author of Techniques of Satire: The Case of Saltykov-Shchedrin; Forbidden Laughter: Soviet Underground Jokes; Taking Penguins to the Movies: Ethnic Humor in Russia; Making War, Not Love: Gender and Sexuality in Russian Humor, as well as four collections of short stories. He has also produced anthologies of the nineteenth- and twentieth-century Russian poetry. His most recent book-length publications are his memoir Shush! Growing up Jewish under Stalin, a scholarly biography, Stalin's Romeo Spy: The Remarkable Rise and Fall of the KGB's Most Daring Operative, two novels on emigration, Na kudykinu goru [From Here to Wherever] and Farewell, Mama Odessa, as well as the forthcoming volume, In the Jaws of the Crocodile: A Soviet Memoir. A bilingual author, he has also published essays and short stories in the Los Angeles Times, San Francisco Chronicle, Partisan Review, North American Review, Prism International, and other American and Canadian periodicals, as well as in Russian, Polish, Belorussian, and Israeli journals. His areas of specialization are Russian satire and humor, contemporary Russian folk culture, and Russian and East European Cinema. Prof. Draitser is currently in charge of the film program in the Division of Russian and Slavic Studies. (For more information, visit:



Visiting and Adjunct Faculty




Lily Alexander

Lily Alexander’s field of expertise is narrative and comparative studies. In addition to degrees in drama and film, she completed two doctoral programs (1998): in Anthropology, and in Modern Languages and Comparative Cultural Studies at the University of Alberta, Canada. At Hunter Prof. Alexander teaches courses on narrative theory and genres, cultural and historical discourse, literature, folklore, mythology, religion, world’s fairytales, and science fiction, exploring Russian storytelling traditions in the contexts of comparative literature and global culture. At NYU and other CUNY colleges, Dr. Alexander has also taught screenwriting, film, television, adaptation, 19th and 20th century literature, media criticism, communication and global media. She is the author of a number of academic publications, including those that appeared in Cinema Journal, The Russian Review and Journal of Narrative Theory. Her current interests include theories and practices of fictional world-building and immersive storytelling. Most recent book-length publication is Fictional Worlds: Traditions in Narrative and the Age of Visual Culture(2013), a set available in print [], and recently published as an interactive illustrated edition on iTunes [] in an innovative transmedia format. A six-part discussion of Dr. Alexander’s scholarly work on world-building, organized by a Provost’s Professor of the University of Southern California, Henry Jenkins, is posted online [ ] at one of the leading academic forums. For more information see:



Vasiliy Arkanov

Vasiliy Arkanov

Vasiliy Arkanov is a former journalist and a published translator. Over the last ten years, he had taught intermediate and advanced Russian at Columbia University, Barnard College, and Indiana University Summer Language School. Since 2014, he has been working as a Senior Academic Advisor at the Macaulay Honors College at Hunter College and as an Adjunct Lecturer in intermediate Russian language courses.




Anneta Greenlee |

Anneta Greenlee is a specialist on women writers and Russian language teaching. She is a graduate of Leningrad State University who received her MA degree in Russian Language and Literature from New York University and her PhD in Comparative Literature from the Graduate Center of the City University of New York. In addition to serving on the permanent faculty of New York University in the Department of Slavic and Russian Studies, for many years Prof. Greenlee has also been teaching a wide variety of courses in Russian language and literature at Hunter College. Her academic interests include women writers, translation, and the experience of emigration as portrayed in literature. She is a published translator and editor who has translated and edited the work of such writers as Mikhail Bulgakov, Zinaida Gippius, Anton Chekhov and Isaak Babel. At present Dr. Greenlee is at work on a fictionalized memoir about her own experience of emigration.




Czeslaw Karkowski (Retired)

Czeslaw Karkowski is the foremost translator of Ezra Pound into Polish and the author of scholarly monographs on Bruno Schulz, Kantian philosophy, and on the Iliad, as well as of a number of scholarly articles and several novels. Prof. Karkowski, who is in charge of the Polish program in the Russian and Slavic Studies Division at Hunter, has also taught philosophy and sociology and recently published a reader for his course on philosophy, Ethics and Family (Cognella Academic Publishing, 2014). Dr. Karkowski involvement in the New York Polish American community includes his active participation in the work of such institutions as the Kościuszko Foundation, Polish American Historical Society, Polish Institute of Arts and Sciences and the Josef Piłsudski Institute. His articles, reviews and comments regularly appear in the leading Polish newspapers of New York City, such as “Nowy dziennik” and “Kurier Plus”, as well as in leading Polish language magazines “Kultura” and “Archiwum Emigracji”. Prof. Karkowski is the faculty supervisor of the Polish Club at Hunter College.




Natalia Kazakova


Natalia Kazakova is a specialist in 19th and early 20th century Russian literature, journalism, culture, and Russian language teaching. She received her PhD in Russian and  Russian Literature  at the Moscow State University (MGU). Her academic interests include the works of Fyodor Dostoevsky, the Russian philosopher Vasilii Rozanov, the circle of his contemporaries and literature of the Silver Age. Her first book, Filosofia Igry (The Philosophy of the Game), was about the criticism of Rozanov and his polemics in the Russian press at the turn of the twentieth century. She is also interested in the philosophical problems of memory, oblivion, and attitude to time.  Prof.Kazakova is the author of numerous articles on Dostoevsky, Rozanov, and writers and poets of the Silver Age. Some of her essays on these themes were published in Novyi mir, Voprosy literatury, Znamia, Russia and Modern World.

Kazakova joined the Russian and Slavic Studies program at Hunter in 2012 and has been teaching Russian language courses at different levels and in various formats, including intensive courses, summer courses and winter intercession courses. Prof. Kazakova considers the knowledge of the Russian language to be the essential prerequisite for understanding Russian culture, literature, philosophy, economy or politics, the belief she imparts to her students in all of the courses she teaches at Hunter.




Margarit Ordukhanyan

Dr. Margarit Ordukhanyan's research interests include literary bilingualism, translation theory, Russian émigré literature, and, most recently, translation pedagogy and its role in the language and humanities curricula. She has authored numerous articles and book chapters on the intersection between literary bilingualism and translation theory. Her pedagogical focus is on teaching translation in the multilingual classroom and on the reintegration of translation into language instruction. In April, 2019, she organized and hosted a conference on teaching translation at Hunter College. Dr. Ordukhanyan designed and implemented the Hunter undergraduate translation major in Russian, as well as the MA in Translation and Interpreting at Hunter College, the first graduate professional translation program within the CUNY system.

At Hunter, she teaches courses on practical and theoretical aspects of translation, Russian language, and Russian literature and culture of the 18th, 19th, and 20th centuries. Drawing on her training in comparative literature, Dr. Ordukhanyan created a highly popular course on narratives of adultery in French, Russian, American, and British literature of the 19th century. Dr. Ordukhanyan is a published translator of poetry and prose from her native Armenian and Russian into English and has contributed to collections and anthologies both in the US and abroad. 



Aksana Pisetskaya

Aksana Pisetskaya

Aksana Pisetskaya received her Ph.D. in Russian language from the Immanuel Kant Baltic Federal University (Kaliningrad, Russia). Her thesis was devoted to the linguistic aspects of the poetry of the Silver Age. She also holds a Master's degree in Belarusian and Russian languages from Belarusian State University. Prof. Pisetskaya has been teaching Russian language courses, both traditional and online, at the university level since 2003. Before becoming a lecturer at Hunter College, she taught courses in philology at the Minsk State Linguistic University (Belarus). Dr. Pisetskaya has published several research articles and presented at major professional conferences on various aspects of language instruction. Her current research interests are focused on Russian as a foreign language, intercultural competence, and methodology in Russian language teaching. Other areas of interest include second language pedagogy and approaches to using literature in the language classroom. Prof. Pisetskaya teaches Russian language based on a communicative and interactive approach, her teaching methods integrating up-to-date technology in the classroom.



Malgorzata Pospiech

Malgorzata Pospiech

Dr. Malgorzata Pospiech is a writer, documentary filmmaker, journalist and photographer. She obtained her Ph.D. from Wroclaw University where she studied languages, literature, film, and art history. She gained national recognition for her work as a director and writer of a feature documentary about Arthur Penn, the famous American director. Dr. Pospiech made several documentaries for Polish TV, such as, for example, A Generation, which chronicles the plight of Polish people deported to Siberia by the Soviets, as well as short documentaries about Polish artists. In addition, she compiled over 70 interviews on camera with veterans and survivors of WWII which are now housed in archives at the Polish Army Veteran's Association in Manhattan and linked to the official site of Peter Weir's film The Way Back.

As a writer she has been contributing to the top Polish literary magazine for the past 30 years. She has published hundreds of articles, essays, interviews and reviews for both popular and academic publications. She also is an active published translator, including Arthur Penn in Conversations, 1992-1995 (appearing in 2011); A  Small Town, the novel nominated for Central Europe Literary Award in 2015; The Seventh Ring ( a novel) and A Notebook (a collection of poems) published in 2016; Ariadna's Labyrinth nominated for Central Europe Literary Award in 2018 and Fog Over the River Styx (2019). Professor Pospiech is in charge of the Polish language and literature program in the Division of Russian and Slavic Studies.




Kathryn Szczepanska

Kathryn Szczepanska is a specialist on Dostoevsky and Russian language teaching. A graduate of the University of Pennsylvania, Prof. Szczepanska received her PhD from Stanford University and has, in the course of her academic career, been granted a number of NEH and IREX research and teaching fellowships. She is the author of a Russian language text book, Russian: A Self-Teaching Guide (John Wiley, 2005) and is currently working on a Russian grammar text for intermediate and advanced students. For the last 30 years Dr. Szczepanska has been an invaluable part of the Division of Russian and Slavic studies, teaching a variety of Russian language courses to Hunter students and contributing to the program’s achievements. In 2010 Prof. Szczepanska was awarded the Presidential Award for Excellence in Teaching.




Julia Trubikhina

Julia Trubikhina received her PhD in Comparative Literature with a specialization in Slavic Studies from New York University. Her interests include literary theory, translation and cultural studies, 20th-century literature and art, 19th- and 20th-century Russian poetry, and contemporary poetry. Her book The Translator's Doubts: Vladimir Nabokov and the Ambiguity of Translation received the Samuel Schuman Prize in Nabokov Studies in 2016 and, with support by Andrew W. Mellon Foundation and the National Endowment for the Arts, was selected for the series "Reissuing and Promoting Slavic Studies Titles as Free EBooks." Among Julia's recent and forthcoming projects are the translated and edited volume of the Russian poet Vladimir Aristov (2017), translations of a seminal contemporary Russian woman writer Elena Shvarts for the first American edition of her work, and of all poetry in Efim Etkind's memoir The Barcelona Prose (both forthcoming in 2021)Prof. Trubikhina teaches all levels of Russian language, 18th-, 19th-, and 20th-century poetry in Russian, Russian Short Story, Humor and Satire, Vampires in Lore and Literature, and 20th-century Russian culture, both in Russian and in English. Prof. Trubikhina has served as the faculty adviser to the Russian Club of Hunter College and has been involved in programming for the Division's cultural program, Russian and East European Cultures at Hunter College (formerly known as Crossing Borders).


« February 2023 »