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Faculty of Modern and Medieval Languages and Linguistics


Dr. Mollie Arbuthnot

Junior Research Fellow, Jesus College
Slavonic Studies
Faculty of Modern & Medieval Languages
Contact details: 

Faculty of Modern and Medieval Languages and Linguistics
Raised Faculty Building
University of Cambridge
Sidgwick Avenue
United Kingdom


Mollie Arbuthnot specialises in visual and material culture in the early Soviet Union—including mass media, propaganda, and theories of viewership—as well as the cultural history of the Soviet national republics, especially Uzbekistan. Her current research project examines Islamic and Central Asian art in Soviet museums. She received her PhD from the University of Manchester, and taught in the History department at Durham University, before joining Cambridge in 2021.

Teaching interests: 

Twentieth-century Russian and Soviet history and culture

Research interests: 

20th-century visual art | modernism | Soviet Central Asia | Islam in the Soviet Union | material culture | cultural heritage | museums

Published works: 

‘Propaganda in Translation: Imagined Muslim Viewers of Early Soviet Posters,’ in Joan Neuberger, Valerie Kivelson, and Sergei Kozlov (eds.) Picturing Russian Empire (forthcoming).

‘The People and the Poster: Theorizing the Soviet Viewer, 1920–1931,’ Slavic Review 78/3 (Fall 2019): pp. 717–37. Winner of the Manchester Doctoral College Excellence Award for Outstanding Output, and an honourable mention for the British Association of Slavic and East European Studies postgraduate prize.