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Matthew Signer

Matthew Signer

Field: 
Eastern Europe, Russia and Eurasia
M.A., in History, Central European University, 2015
B.A., (Honors) in History, McGill University, 2014
DEC., in Liberal Arts, Dawson College, 2011

I am a PhD student specialising in the history of Eastern, Central, and Southeastern Europe during the twentieth and twenty-first centuries. While I have dedicated most of my academic life to researching and writing about Romania specifically, I am also interested in several other countries within the region, particularly Hungary, Moldova, and the former Czechoslovakia, German Democratic Republic, and Yugoslavia.

Thematically, I study the history of revolution, resistance, and radicalism. I am interested in forms of protest and political expression, cultures and subcultures of dissidence, and attempts to form alternative state structures within (or against) existing societies or regimes.

My dissertation project at Stanford focuses on the Romanian Revolution of 1989. While most current studies of this revolution address mainly the actions of political elites in Timișoara and Bucharest, I propose a re-examination of the revolution using a bottom-up approach defined by the activities and rhetoric of individual citizens across the country. I also aim to employ a regional methodology in my research, investigating local county archives in order to widen the geographic scope of the revolution and break the assumption that it occurred in those two cities alone.