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Willard Sunderland

Title: Henry R. Winkler Professor of Modern History
Office: 335B McMicken Hall
Tel: 513-556-1198
Email: willard.sunderland@uc.edu

Professor Sunderland received his BA in Russian Studies from the University of Pennsylvania and his masters and doctorate in history from Indiana University. Since joining the department in 1996, he has taught in the fields of Russia and the Soviet Union, modern Europe, and world history.

Sunderland's principal research interests are in the history of the Russian Empire in the modern period.  In conducting his work, he has lived and traveled extensively in the Russian Federation and the other states of the former Soviet Union. 

His most recent book, The Baron's Cloak: A History of the Russian Empire in War and Revolution, appeared with Cornell University Press in 2014 and has been recognized with publication awards from the Association for the Study of the Nationalities (ASN), the Association for Slavic, East European, and Eurasian Studies (ASEEES), and the Ohio Academy of History. 

Sunderland's current book-in-progress focuses on the history of Russia's encounters with Eurasia and the broader world in the 18th century.

In July 2015, he began a position as co-editor for the journal Kritika: Explorations in Russian and Eurasian History



  • The Baron's Cloak: A History of the Russian Empire in War and Revolution (Cornell University Press, 2014)

    Russia's People of Empire: Life Stories from Eurasia, 1500 to the Present (Edited with Stephen M. Norris) (Indiana University Press, 2012)

    Peopling the Russian Periphery: Borderland Colonization in Eurasian History (Edited with Nicholas Breyfogle and Abby Schrader) (Routledge, 2007)

    Taming the Wild Field: Colonization and Empire on the Russian Steppe (Cornell University Press, 2004; Paperback: 2006)

Experience & Service

Courses Taught

  • Survey Courses: The History of Russia: From Perun to Putin; The Soviet Experience, 1917-1991; Russia Between Reform and Revolution, 1855-1917; World History, from Ancient Times to the Present

  • Special Topics Courses: Anna Karenina's Russia; Vereshchagin's World: Russian Imperialism in Life and Art; Land of the Giant Tsar: Russia in the Age of Peter the Great; War and Peace: Russia and Napoleon in History and Myth; Comparative Frontiers in World History; Travel, Exploration, and Empire in the European Experience, 1500-1900

  • Graduate Courses: War and Revolution in the Modern World, 1750-1914; The Literature of Modern European History, 1700-1900; Frontiers and Frontier Societies in Comparative Perspective; Methodologies of World History; Empires and Imperialism in European History, ca.1000-1914