Timothy Snyder

Timothy Snyder's picture
Bird White Housum Professor of History
Office: 
Luce 345
Phone: 
203-432-7662
Field(s) of interest: 
Europe: Modern Eastern Europe


Timothy Snyder received his doctorate from the University of Oxford in 1997, where he was a British Marshall Scholar.  Before joining the faculty at Yale in 2001, he held fellowships in Paris and Vienna, and an Academy Scholarship at Harvard. He is the author of five award-winning books, including: Nationalism, Marxism, and Modern Central Europe: A Biography of Kazimierz Kelles-Krauz (Harvard Press, 1998); The Reconstruction of Nations: Poland, Ukraine, Lithuania, Belarus, 1569-1999 (Yale Press, 2003); Sketches from a Secret War: A Polish Artist’s Mission to Liberate Soviet Ukraine (Yale Press, 2005); The Red Prince: The Secret Lives of A Habsburg Archduke (Basic Books, 2008).  He is also the co-editor of two books Wall Around the West: State Power and Immigration Controls in Europe and North America (Rowman and Littlefield, 2001) and Stalin and Europe: War, Terror, Domination (forthcoming).   In 2010 he published Bloodlands: Europe Between Hitler and Stalin, a history of Nazi and Soviet mass killing on the lands between Berlin and Moscow.  It has received a number of honors, including the Leipzig Prize for European Understanding and the Ralph Waldo Emerson Award in the Humanities.  It was named a book of the year by some dozen publications, has been translated into more than twenty languages, and was a bestseller in four countries.   Click here for a list of reviews and links.  Most recently he helped Tony Judt to compose a thematic history of political ideas and intellectuals in politics, Thinking the Twentieth Century, published by Penguin in February 2012.

He teaches undergraduate and graduate courses in modern East European political history.  In 2012-2013 he will teach History 263-264, “Eastern Europe to 1914” and “Eastern Europe Since 1914,” as well as graduate seminars on the Holocaust and on east European history as global history.


Scholarly Articles


Selected Book Reviews

  • “Caught Between Hitler and Stalin” (on “Defiance,” a film directed by Edward Zwick and Defiance by Nechama Tec), New York Review of Books, 30 April 2009.
  • “Hitler’s Dialectic of Death,” on Mark Mazower, Hitler’s Empire: Nazi Rule in Occupied Europe, London: Allen Unwin, 2008, in Times Literary Supplement, 14 August 2008.
  • “The Unknown Holocaust,” on Joshua Rubernstein and llya Altman, eds., The Unknown Black Book: The Holocaust in the German-Occupied Soviet Territories, Bloomington: Indiana University Press, 2008, in Truthdig, 15 February 2008.
  • “At the Deep End,” on Abram Brumberg, Journeys Through Vanishing Worlds, London: Scarith, in Times Literary Supplement, 4 April 2008.
  • “Betrayed on All Sides,” on Jan Gross, Fear: Anti-Semitism in Poland after Auschwitz: An essay in Historical Interpretation, Princeton: Princeton University Press, 2006, Times Literary Supplement, 6 October 2006, 27.
  • Tony Judt, Postwar: A History of Europe Since 1945, New York: Penguin, 2005, in IWM Newsletter, Vienna, Spring 2006.
  • “Wartime Lies,” on Czeslaw Milosz, Legends of Modernity: Essays and Letters From Occupied Poland, trans. Madeline Levine, New York: Farrar, Straus & Giroux, 2005, The Nation, January 9/16 2006, 26-29.
  • “Revolution Without the Workers,” on David Ost, The Defeat of Solidarity: Anger and Politics in Eastern Europe, Ithaca: Cornell University Press, 2005, for Times Literary Supplement, 23 and 30 December 2005, 39.
  • “Keys to Kiev,” on Serhii Plokhy, The Unmaking of Imperial Russia: Mykhaïlo Hrushevsky and the Writing of Ukrainian History, Toronto: University of Toronto Press, 2005, for Times Literary Supplement, 16 December 2005, 25.
  • “The Old Country,” on Anatol Lieven, America Right or Wrong: An Anatomy of American Nationalism, for Times Literary Supplement, 25 March 2005, 34-36.
  • “Ways of Dying,” on Kate Brown, A Biography of No Place: From Ethnic Borderland to Soviet Heartland, Cambridge: Harvard University Press, 2004, and Karel C. Berkhoff, Harvest of Despair: Life and Death in Ukraine under Nazi Rule, Cambridge: Harvard University Press, 2004, Times Literary Supplement, 24 September 2004.
  • “Pity the First Ally,” on Norman Davies, Rising ‘44: The Battle for Warsaw, London: Macmillan, 2003, for Times Literary Supplement, 20 February 2004, 13.
  • “The Inevitability of the Unexpected,” review of Roman Szporluk, Russia, Ukraine, and the Breakup of the Soviet Union, Stanford: Hoover Institution Press, 2000, in Institut für die Wissenschaften vom Menschen Newsletter (Vienna), 76, Spring 2002, 25-26.


Selected Essays

  • “Holocaust: The Ignored Reality,” New York Review of Books, 16 July 2009.
  • “In the Shadow of Emperors and General Secretaries: On the origins of the nations of East Central Europe” (“W cieniu cesaerzy i sekretarzy”), Tygodnik Powszechny, 27 July 2008, 24-25.
  • “Ukraine: The Orange Revolution,” with Timothy Garton Ash, New York Review of Books, 28 April 2005, 28-32.
  • “War is Peace,” Prospect, Number 104, November 2004, 32-37.
  • “A Legend of Freedom: Solidarity,” (“Legenda o wolnosci”), Tygodnik Powszechny, special edition on Solidarity, 4 September 2005.
  • “The Ethnic Cleansing of Volhynia, 1943” (“Wolyn, rok 1943),” Tygodnik Powszechny (Cracow), 11 May 2003, 1, 7.
  • “Five Centuries and Eight Years: Operation Vistula and the homogeneity of Polish society” (Piec wieków i osiem lat: ““Akcja ‘Wisla’ a homogenicznosc polskiego spoleczenstwa”), Tygodnik Powszechny, April 2002.
  • “Poles and Czechs, Ten Years On,” Prospect, February 1999, 54-57. 


Selected Editorials