Photo credits:
Mikael Wallerstedt

Paul W Werth

Fellow, SCAS.
Professor of History, University of Nevada, Las Vegas

Paul W Werth completed a BA at Knox College (1990) and his PhD at the University of Michigan (1996).
His initial research focused on the history of religious freedom in tsarist Russia and the role of confessional
institutions in Russia’s imperial governance across the long nineteenth century. The culmination of that work
was The Tsar’s Foreign Faiths: Toleration and the Fate of Religious Freedom in Imperial Russia (Oxford,
2014). He subsequently explored Russia’s entry into the modern age in 1837: Russia’s Quiet Revolution (Ox-
ford, 2021). In 2022 Werth was named a Fellow of the John Simon Guggenheim Memorial Foundation.

At the Swedish Collegium, he will work on two projects united by a broad analytical concern with borders,
sovereignty and territoriality. The first is A Territorial History of Russia (under contract with Bloomsbury),
which explains Russia’s territorial scope over the last seven centuries for a broad audience. As he completes
that project, he will embrace a larger one entitled Russia’s Enclosure (under contract with Oxford), which
investigates the long and complex history of Russia’s borders, spanning three continents, from the earliest
boundary-making in the medieval period through the present. That project explores how official Russia con-
ceptualized and sought to reinforce the country’s physical limits, and how sundry historical actors and in-
stitutions—from border guards and customs officers to pilgrims and nomads—experienced the border and
sometimes defied its injunctions.

Paul W Werth is in residence in the spring of 2024.
This information is accurate as of the academic year 2023-24.