Campus News

Noted Russian historian to lecture on ‘memory laws’

Nikolay Koposov's lecture will provide a general overview on legislation dealing with historical memory.

Nikolay Koposov, currently a visiting professor of history at Johns Hopkins University, will present a lecture, “ ‘Memory Laws’ in Europe: A New Civil Religion?,” on Jan. 28 at 4:30 p.m. in the Larry Walker Room of Dean Rusk Hall. The lecture is free and open to the public.

Koposov’s lecture will provide a general overview on legislation dealing with historical memory, from the post-War anti-fascist legislation through the lois mémorielles in France in the 1990s and up to contemporary battles over acknowledging the past in Eastern Europe and Turkey. The idea of memory laws emerged in France during debates over how to teach French colonialism.

Koposov’s lecture and visit are sponsored by the Germanic and Slavic studies department and the history department in the Franklin College of Arts and Sciences, the School of Law’s Dean Rusk Center for International Law and Policy, the Willson Center for Humanities and Arts, and the School of Public and International Affairs.

Koposov is the author of several books on French and Russian history and general historiography, including History and Politics in Russia, How Historians Think and Political Leaders of Antiquity, the Middle Ages and Modernity. He also has written numerous articles on subjects such as memory law and the logic of democracy.

Koposov was founder and dean of Russia’s first liberal arts college-Smolny College, a joint project with St. Petersburg State University and New York’s Bard College. Koposov and Dina Khapaeva received a ­MacArthur Foundation Grant for the project ­”Bologna Process and History ­Education in Russia.”