Peter Budrin's research explores cultural institutions that function as zones of intellectual autonomy under totalitarianism. His current project analyses cultural and institutional implications of the state-supported critical campaign against ‘vulgar sociology’. Began in the 1930s, this campaign, aimed against the reductionist Marxist sociology of the 1920s, led to a paradoxical rehabilitation of cultural complexity in the age of Great Terror. The project reconstructs this overlooked episode of Soviet intellectual history by looking at various individuals affiliated with the celebrated Institute of Philosophy and Literature in Moscow (IFLI). Additionally, Peter is completing a monograph exploring the Soviet reception of the eighteenth-century British writer and clergyman Laurence Sterne.
Postdoctoral Fellow, Harvard University