Kate Brown, 2019 Ena H. Thompson Distinguished Lecturer, will present her talk titled "The Great Chernobyl Acceleration: The Disaster Behind the Catastrophe."

Brown is a professor of history at University of Maryland, Baltimore County (UMBC). She is the author of A Biography of No Place: From Ethnic Borderland to Soviet Heartland (Harvard 2004) which won a handful of prizes including the American Historical Association’s George Louis Beer Prize for the Best Book in International European History. Brown’s Plutopia: Nuclear Families in Atomic Cities and the Great Soviet and American Plutonium Disasters appeared in 2013 with Oxford University Press. Plutopia won the 2014 George Perkins Marsh Prize from the American Society for Environmental History (ASEH), the 2014 Ellis W. Hawley Prize from the Organization of American Historians (OAH), the 2014 Heldt Prize from the Association for Women in Slavic Studies, the Wayne S. Vucinich 2014 Book Prize of the Association for Slavic Studies, East European, and Eurasian Studies, the 2014 Robert G. Athearn Prize from the Western History Association, the 2014 Albert J. Beveridge Award from the American Historical Association (AHA), and the 2015 John H. Dunning Prize also from the AHA, for the best book in American history in the last two years. To read more about Plutopia, see www.plutopia.net.  

Brown’s newest book, a collection of essays, Dispatches from Dystopia: Histories of Places Not Yet Forgotten, was published by the University of Chicago Press in 2015.  It explores place and the construction of space as a springboard for histories of communities and territories which have been silenced or destroyed.  She is currently finishing a book, A Manual for Survival, on the environmental and medical consequences of the Chernobyl disaster, to be published by Norton in 2019. Brown has published articles in the American Historical Review, Chronicle of Higher Education, Harper’s on-line edition, KritikaAeon Magazine, Slate Magazine and the Times Literary Supplement. 

She is a 2009 Guggenheim Fellow, and has been awarded grants from the National Endowment for the Humanities, the Social Science Research Council, the National Council for East European and Eurasian Research, the International Research and Exchange Board, the Eurasia Foundation, the American Council of Learned Societies, Harvard University’s Davis Center, UMBC’s Dresher Center and the Kennan Institute in Washington, DC. She won the 2015 Univ. of Maryland Regents’ Award for Excellence in Research. 

Brown was a fellow at the European University Institute in Florence, Italy, in fall 2016 and in spring 2017 she held the Berlin Prize at The American Academy in Berlin.  She was the recipient of a 2016-2017 Carnegie Foundation Fellowship.

Event Contact

Wednesday, February 27, 2019 7:00 pm to 9:00 pm
  • Pomona College
  • Rose Hills Theatre, Smith Campus Center
  • 170 E. Sixth Street
General Public
Pomona Alumni
Pomona Faculty and Staff
Pomona Students
Claremont Colleges Community