Areas of Expertise (10)
History of Mass Media
Soviet Soldiers in World War II
Stalinist Culture and Politics
Russian and Soviet
Russia in East Asia
Russia and the former Soviet Union
Matthew Lenoe's first book, "Closer to the Masses: Stalinist Culture, Social Revolution and Soviet Newspapers," which examined the origins of high Stalinist culture, including Socialist Realist literature, in the newspaper press of the 1920s, was published by Harvard University Press in 2004. His second, "The Kirov Murder and Soviet History," which used new archival documents on the Kirov murder to demonstrate that Stalin was not involved in orchestrating the murder, came out with Yale University Press, in 2010.
University of Chicago: PhD, Russian History 1997
University of Chicago: MA, Russian History 1993
University of Chicago: BA, General Studies in the Humanities 1988
Selected Media Appearances (6)
It’s time to do away with laws enforcing triumphal national histories
Washington Post print
Matthew Lenoe says such ‘memory laws’ have become weapons for right-wing nationalists
Russian Soldiers Are Complaining On Social Media – In The Past, Would They Have Been Shot?
"The negative comments included hints of the desperate military situation, accounts of hunger, cold, homesickness, poor weapons, insomnia, and the like," explained Dr. Matthew E. Lenoe, associate professor of history at the University of Rochester, and author of the book Closer to the Masses: Stalinist Culture, Social Revolution and Soviet Newspapers.
EU leaders pledge increased military aid for Ukraine — live updates
MSN News online
University of Rochester's Matthew Lenoe called Russia's invasion of its neighbor "a brutal act of aggression with absolutely no justification."
Why it’s time to give the Soviet Union its due for World War II
Washington Post print
Today is the anniversary of the opening of the 1941 Soviet offensive at the Battle of Moscow: the first major defeat suffered by Nazi Germany and perhaps the most important turning point of World War II in Europe. It is a day to remember the immense losses that Russians and other peoples under Soviet rule suffered in the war, and to acknowledge their central role in Allied victory.
This article was published more than 4 years ago Made by History About Made by History and Contact Right-wing warnings pose far more danger to America than left-wing violence
Washington Post print
Authoritarians historically have gained power by pointing to non-existent violence from their opponents.
Authoritarian rhetoric about left-wing violence ‘distorted,’ ‘dangerous’
University of Rochester online
Historical authoritarian regimes or rulers have cemented their power by pointing to non-existing violence from their opponents, argues Matthew Lenoe, associate professor of history and the immediate past chair of the University of Rochester’s history department.
Selected Articles (3)
Fear, Loathing, and Conspiracy: The Kirov Murder as Impetus for TerrorOxford University Press
It is generally agreed that in the period 1936–9 there were several distinct waves of terror. The chapter discusses the Kirov assassination of December 1934 as a precipitant of the terror against the former opposition and the elite in general. The assassination surprised Stalin, who was not its organizer, and turned his long-time fear of assassination and conspiracy and mistrust of the police into a rage that became the pretext for his terror against opponents: real, imagined, and possible.
Khruschchev Era Politics and the Investigation of the Kirov MurderActa Slavica Iaponica
The assassination of Sergei Kirov, Leningrad party chief, on December 1, 1934, was a political sensation inside and outside the USSR. Although the killer, a disgruntled Communist named Leonid Nikolaev, insisted in early interrogations that he had acted alone, Soviet police could not accept this. In a Soviet culture where even rotten vegetables on store shelves could signal counterrevolutionary sabotage, investigators interpreted the murder as a conspiracy by hostile capitalist powers, internal “class enemies,” or both.
In Defense of Timasheff’s Great RetreatKritika: Explorations in Russian and Eurasian History
In a number of commentaries, Nicholas Timasheff has been raked over the coals. It is an easy game to take apart a work that was written 60 years ago without access to archives or even much firsthand reporting from inside the USSR other than the Soviet press itself. Lenoe believes that Timasheff deserves better.