2022 Levin Article Prize Winner Announced

Congratulations, Sean Griffin!

Please join us in congratulating Sean Griffin, winner of the 2022 Levin Article Prize!

His article, Revolution, Raskol, and Rock ‘n’ Roll: The 1,020th Anniversary of the Day of the Baptism of Rus, was published in our April 2021 issue. Griffin charts a course from 1991 to 2008, laying out the fascinating story of the Baptism of Rus and the cultural narrative surrounding it in post-Soviet politics. The prize committee members noted that Russia’s recent invasion of Ukraine has, sadly, made the article quite relevant, and they praised it for “expertly combining analysis of a contemporary issue with an explanation of the distant past.” Griffin’s article also stands out for its close attention to ecclesiastical politics and church-state relations in contemporary Russia and Ukraine. Prize committee members observed that Griffin’s work “demonstrates that the historical narratives we craft and cultivate are, among other things, a manifestation of our vision of the future.”

Griffin is a Core Fellow in the Collegium for Advanced Studies at the University of Helsinki. His research focuses on the history of the Orthodox Church and its role in the making of cultural memory: from the liturgy and chronicles of medieval Kyiv, to the arthouse films and digital propaganda of modern Moscow. His first monograph, The Liturgical Past in Byzantium and Early Rus (Cambridge University Press, 2019), was the winner of the W. Bruce Lincoln Book Prize and the Ecclesiastical History Society Book Prize.

Named in honor of Eve Levin, who served as the journal's editor from 1996 to 2020, the Levin Article Prize is awarded to the article published in The Russian Review in the previous calendar year judged to be the best by an independent committee of advanced graduate students in Russian and Eurasian studies drawn from institutions across the United States.

The journal is grateful to Anna Bisikalo, LeiAnna Hamel, Lidia Tripiccione, and Kimberly St. Julian-Varnon for serving on the prize committee, and especially to Adam Rodger for chairing the committee.

If you are a scholar interested in being considered for the prize in the future, send us your manuscripts--all articles published in the journal in the previous calendar year will be considered for the award!