William H. Laird Professor of Russian and the Liberal Arts
Laura Goering (PhD. Cornell University) teaches courses on 19th and 20th-century literature, food in Russian culture, translation theory and practice, and Russian children’s literature, as well as Russian language. She is the co-author (with Anna Dotlibova and Diane Nemec Ignashev) of Baba Yaga’s Russian School, and has published on Russian philosophy of language, Russian medical history, and food studies.
Anna Mikhailovna Dotlibova came to Carleton from The Russian State Academy for Theater Art (now known as the Russian Academy of Theater Art) in Moscow. She teaches classes in the department at all levels, from Russian 101 through the senior seminar. The buzz in the department is that Anna Mikhailovna не говорит по-английски.
Victoria Thorstensson (PhD, University of Wisconsin-Madison) teaches all levels of Russian
language and a variety of courses on Russian and Russophone literature and culture. She is the
Program Director for Carleton College's Off-Campus Program in Qazaqstan.
Prior to Carleton, she was an assistant professor at Nazarbayev University in Astana, Qazaqstan,
where she taught world and Russian literature for eight years. Before that, she taught Russian
language, literature, and culture at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, Yale University, the
University of Pennsylvania, and the Kathryn Wasserman Davis School of Russian at Middlebury
Her primary research specialty is the 19th-century Russian polemical novel. She writes on
Dostoevsky, Leskov, the nihilist countercultural movement, Russian revolutionary intelligentsia,
the intersections of literature and science, and on realism. She is currently working on a book-
length study of Russian conservative novelist Boleslav Markevich. She is also interested in
translation and language pedagogy.
Her recent publications include a chapter on Boleslav Markevich and Russian conservative
response to Darwinism in the volume Reading Darwin in Imperial Russia, and “from
Metamorph,” a selection of translated poems by contemporary Qazaq Russophone poet Anuar
Duisenbinov, published in Asymptote. She works on these translations with her co-translator and
friend, Mariya Deykute.
In her free time, Victoria enjoys practicing Ashtanga yoga and traveling.
Darina Kozhakhmetova (BA, Nazarbayev University, Qazaqstan) was born in Russia and raised in Qazaqstan. She earned a BA in international relations and politics from Nazarbayev University in 2022, but she has always been interested in studying languages and facilitating language acquisition. She loves making connections with people and finding new friends along the way.
Join Darina at the Department’s weekly Russian Table in LDC, make beautiful handicrafts, and enjoy Russian blini and Qazaq treats during our Russian Tea in Parish House. Darina organizes many other exciting events, such as the celebrations of Russian and Qazaq holidays and traditions.
You can see Darina painting and reading outside in the fall, skating on the ice rink on the Bald Spot and climbing snowy hills in winter, and running through the Arb with the spring breeze to find beautiful dandelions for flower crowns.
Diane Nemec Ignashev (Ph.D. University of Chicago) has taught courses on a wide range of topics, from the culture of Old Russia to “Bestsellers of Perestroika,” from Russian Cinema to identity studies. A member of the Board of Directors of the American Council of Teachers of Russian (ACTR), Nemec-Ignashev holds a joint appointment in the Department of Discourse and Communication Studies at Moscow State University. She has directed the Carleton Moscow Seminar since 1995, helped develop the ACM program in Krasnodar, co-directed the 2001 ACM Global Partners Faculty Seminar in Krasnador with Prof. Michael Hemesath (Economics) and co-directed the 2005 Carleton Alumni Tour to Moscow, Siberia, and St. Petersburg with Anna Dotlibova.
Specializing in twentieth-century Russian cultural studies, Nemec Ignashev’s research includes articles and translations of Soviet Russian writers, including a compilation of the memoirs of Ariadna Efron (the daughter of poet Marina Tsvetaeva) and Ada Federolf—Unforced Labors (Moscow: Vozvrashchenie, 2006). Her edition of Efron’s childhood memoirs No Love without Poetry: The Memoirs of Marina Tsvetaeva’s Daughter (Northwestern University Press, 2009) was awarded the 2011 prize for Best Translation into English (Scholarly Edition) by the Association of Teachers of Slavic and East European Languages.
Supported by a 2011 Pen Translation Fund grant, in 2013 she completed a translation of Victor Martinovich’s novel Paranoia, banned in 2010 in the author’s native Belarus. In 2014 she published a translation of short stories by Russian Gulag survivor Georgii Demidov, Five Fates from a Wondrous Planet (Moscow: Vozvrashchenie), which included a story translated by Carleton Russian majors James Jackson (’11) , Brian Kilgour (’11), Ben Tyler (’11), and Denis Griffis (’12) as part of their comps. In 2016 Northwestern University Press published her translation of Liudmila Ulitskaia’s novel, The Kukotsky Enigma. Nemec Ignashev’s current research project is a monograph on the work of Russian filmmaker, Aleksandr Sokurov. Her 2021 article on Sokurov’s Father and Son – “On Cinematic Ekphrasis: Aleksandr Sokurov’s Otets i syn Redux,” published in Film Criticism, earned the 2021 SCMS Central/East/South European Cinemas Outstanding Essay Award. It and a second essay on Sokurov’s Days of Eclipse have also been published in Russia.