Russian, East European and Eurasian History, War and Society, Legal History and International Law
Please email me if you would like to set up a meeting.
Franziska Exeler teaches Russian, East European and Eurasian history and global history at Freie Universität Berlin. She is also Mellon Postdoctoral Research Fellow at the Centre for History and Economics and Junior Research Fellow at Magdalene College, University of Cambridge. Her research interests include the political, social and cultural history of Stalinism and the Soviet Union; World War II and its legacies in Europe and Asia; legal history, international law and transitional justice; and empire, space and migration.
She is currently completing a book manuscript titled Wartime Ghosts. Nazi Occupation and Its Aftermath in the Soviet Union. Related research projects analyze how the Soviet government understood and experimented with international and domestic law during and after the Second World War, and how the Soviet prosecution of treason and war crimes fit into the global moment of post-World War II justice.
Franziska Exeler's research has been supported by the Princeton Institute for International and Regional Studies, the Social Science Research Council (International Dissertation Research Fellowship, with funds from the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation), the European University Institute (Max Weber Postdoctoral Fellowship) and the Higher School of Economics in Moscow (Postdoctoral Fellowship at the International Center for the History and Sociology of World War II and Its Consequences).
She holds a PhD in History from Princeton University, an MA in History from Princeton University, and an MA in History, Political Sciences and Economics from Humboldt University Berlin.
Together with Diana Kim (Georgetown University), she is coordinating the Invisible Histories website, a platform for researchers to present photographs in context and explore hidden narratives. The project is supported by the Joint Center for History of Economics at Harvard University and the University of Cambridge.
A historian of Russia, Eastern Europe and Eurasia, Franziska Exeler’s research interests include the political, social and cultural history of Stalinism and the Soviet Union; World War II and its legacies in Europe and Asia; legal history, international law and transitional justice; and empire, space and migration. Her current book project Wartime Ghosts. Nazi Occupation and Its Aftermath in the Soviet Union draws on fieldwork conducted in Belarus, Russia, Ukraine, Israel, Poland, Germany and the United States. It is based on her dissertation "Reckoning with Occupation. Soviet Power, Local Communities, and the Ghosts of Wartime Behavior in Post-1944 Belorussia." The book investigates the choices that inhabitants of the Soviet European borderlands made and were forced to make under German wartime rule, and examines their political, social, personal and legal repercussions.
Related research projects focus on how Moscow both understood and experimented with international and domestic law during and after the Second World War, and how the Soviet prosecution of treason and war crimes fit into the larger, indeed global post-World War II moment of punishment, retribution and justice-seeking. A new book-length project, tentatively titled Empire in Motion, will examine the dynamics of space, movement and identity in twentieth-century Russia and Eurasia through memoirs, oral history interviews and photography.
For more on her work, please see her interview with the Toynbee Prize Foundation.
“What Did You Do during the War? Personal Responses to the Aftermath of Nazi Occupation.” Kritika: Explorations in Russian and Eurasian History 17, 4 (2016), 805–835.
“The Ambivalent State. Determining Guilt in the Post-World War II Soviet Union.” Slavic Review 75, 3 (2016), 606–629.
“Gewalt im Militär. Die Rote Armee im Zweiten Weltkrieg” (Violence inside the Military. The Red Army in World War II). Zeitschrift für Geschichtswissenschaft 3 (2012), 228–246.
Chapters in Edited Volumes:
“Kogda okonchilas’ voina. Sovetskaia Belorussiia v seredine 1940-e – 1950-e gg.” (When the War Was Over. Soviet Belorussia from the mid-1940s to 1950s), in Belarus’ i Germaniia. Historyia i suchasnasts’. Materyialy mizhnarodnai navukovai kanferentsyi, edited by A.A Kavaleniia and S.Ia. Novikaŭ. Minsk: MGLU, 2012, 85–92.
“L’Expérience de la guerre: violence et violence extrême” (The Experience of War: Violence and Extreme Violence), in Encyclopédie de la seconde guerre mondiale, edited by Jean-François Muracciole and Guillaume Piketty. Paris: Éditions Robert Laffont, 2015, 1379–1385.
Stephan Lehnstaedt, Occupation in the East. The Daily Lives of German Occupiers in Warsaw and Minsk, 1939-1944, translated by Martin Dean. New York: Berghahn Books, 2016, History: Review of New Books, forthcoming May 2018.
Lewis H. Siegelbaum and Leslie Page Moch, Broad is My Native Land. Repertoires and Regimes of Migration in Russia’s Twentieth Century. Ithaca: Cornell UP, 2014, H-Soz-u-Kult and H-Net Reviews, January 2016.
Anna Krylova, Soviet Women in Combat. A History of Violence on the Eastern Front. Cambridge: Cambridge UP, 2010, H-Soz-u-Kult and H-Net Reviews, December 2010.
Mark Edele, Soviet Veterans of the Second World War. A Popular Movement in an Authoritarian Society, 1941-1991. Oxford: Oxford UP, 2008, H-Soz-u-Kult and H-Net Reviews, January 2010.
Ulrike Goeken-Haidl, Der Weg zurück. Die Repatriierung sowjetischer Zwangsarbeiter während und nach dem Zweiten Weltkrieg [The Return. The Repatriation of Soviet Forced Laborers during and after the Second World War]. Essen: Klartext Verlag, 2006, H-Soz-u-Kult, December 2007.