professor of Russian literature, University of Oxford
Julie Curtis teaches Russian literature at Oxford University. Her research has largely been focused on subversive writers of the early Stalin Period (1920s and 1930s). She has published analytical and biographical studies of the satirical novelist/playwright Mikhail Bulgakov (1891-1940). More recently she has turned her attention to Evgeny Zamiatin (1884-1937), an anti-utopian writer much admired by George Orwell. Recently she completed work on the first full biography of Zamiatin to appear in any language; she has also co-edited a scholarly edition in Russian of his most famous novel, We, based on a unique typescript she discovered in an American archive.
She runs a specialist option for students in Russian drama, which involves the study of plays from the 1820s right up to the present day. She has enjoyed helping with productions of Russian plays in several British theatres (the RSC at Stratford, the Barbican and National Theatres in London, the Belgrade Theatre in Coventry) by providing cast workshops, writing programme features, working on translations, and advising directors and design staff. Current research plans – funded until 2020 by the AHRC at Oxford and Manchester Universities – include a study of the highly politicised 21st-century theatre scene in Russia, Ukraine and Belarus.