I am a Ph.D. candidate at the University of Illinois at Chicago (History department) writing a dissertation under Professor Jonathan Daly's guidance. I was born in Tashkent (Uzbekistan) and spent my youth in Moscow (Russia), but I have lived in Chicago for the last 16 years. I have a philosophy and religious studies background, but I started studying history upon coming to the US. My current research is about the history of the Soviet children's literature of the Interwar period. More specifically, I am writing about biographies of Party Leaders and Red Army Commanders written for children under Stalin in the 1920s and the 1930s. I am also a children's book collector and enthusiast.