Faculty in the Department of History

Robert H. Greene

Robert H. Greene

Associate Professor of History

Office: LA 257A
Email: robert.greene@umontana.edu
Office Hours:

Fall 2020: Mondays, 10am-12pm via Zoom.  Click this link to enter the Waiting Room.


Personal Website
Curriculum Vitae

Personal Summary

Robert H. Greene teaches courses in Russian, Soviet, and East European history. His research focuses on the religious, cultural, and political history of the Russian Empire and Soviet state. Greene's first monograph, Bodies Like Bright Stars, is a study of Russian Orthodox devotion to saints and relics in the late 19th-early 20th centuries. His other publications have dealt with issues at the intersection of religion, culture, and society: pilgrimage patterns, canonization policy, Jewish integration, and the political deployment of sacred symbols. He is currently in the beginning stages of a project on diaries and autobiographies from the Russian Civil War.

With Professors Ona Renner-Fahey and Clint Walker (World Languages & Cultures), Greene is co-director of the Russian Studies Program at the University of Montana. Students interested in a Russian Studies minor should meet with Professor Greene or his comrades in WLC.

Greene advises graduate students working in all fields of imperial and Soviet-era Russian history, with particular emphasis on cultural and religious history. He does not accept graduate students in every admissions cycle. Prospective MA students, and current PhD students preparing an examination field in modern European or Russian history, should contact him with questions.

Field of Study

Cultural, Political, and Social History of Russia and the Soviet Union; Religious History


Ph.D., University of Michigan, 2004 (History)
M.A., University of Michigan, 1998 (History) 
B.A., University of Rochester, 1997 (History and Russian Studies)

Selected Publications

* co-editor and translator, with Eugene M. Avrutin, of The Story of a Life: Memoirs of a Young Jewish Woman in the Russian Empire (Northern Illinois University Press, 2012).

* Bodies like Bright Stars: Saints and Relics in Orthodox Russia (Northern Illinois University Press, 2009).

 * “Making Saints: Canonization and Community in Late Imperial Russia,” The Carl Beck Papers in Russian and East European Studies, no. 1801 (University of Pittsburgh, 2006).

* co-editor, with Valerie A. Kivelson, of Orthodox Russia: Belief and Practice Under the Tsars (Pennsylvania State University Press, 2003).


Bodies Like Bright Stars: Saints and Relics in Orthodox RussiaOrthodox Russia: Belief and Practice Under the Tsars


"A Nineteenth-Century Life of St. Stefan of Perm (c. 1340-1396)," in Orthodox Christianity in Imperial Russia: A Source Book on Lived Religion, ed. Heather J. Coleman (Bloomington: Indiana UP, 2014)

"Orthodox Petitions for the Transfer of the Holy Relics of St. Stefan of Perm, 1909," in Orthodox Christianity in Imperial Russia: A Source Book on Lived Religion, ed. Heather J. Coleman (Bloomington: Indiana UP, 2014)

"Bodies in Motion: Steam-Powered Pilgrimages in Late Imperial Russia,” Russian History 39 (2012): 247-68  (Honorable Mention for Distinguished Scholar Award, Association for the Study of Eastern Christianity, 2012)

Reviews in Slavic Review, Russian Review, Revolutionary Russia, Canadian-American Slavic Studies, Canadian Journal of History, Journal of Church and State, Journal of Soviet and Post-Soviet Politics and Society, Journal of World HistoryThe HistorianChurch HistorySocial History, and Montana: The Magazine of Western History


HSTR 102H: Western Civilization II

HSTR 104H: Western Civilization II (Honors section)

HSTR 200: Intro to Historical Methods

HSTR 357: Imperial Russia

HSTR 358: History of the Soviet Union

HSTR 363: Eastern Europe

HSTR 363: Eastern Europe: Life and Death on the Eastern Front 

HSTR 400: Microhistory

HSTR 457: The World of Anna Karenina

HSTR 458: The Russian Revolution

HSTR 502: Readings in Modern Europe (grad course)

HSTR 516: Modern Europe (grad course)

HSTR 544: Readings in Modern Russian History (grad course)

HSTR 595: Readings in Modern European Cultural and Social History (grad course)

HSTR 595: Readings in Kievan Rus and Muscovy (grad course)

HSTR 595: Readings in Imperial Russia (grad course)

HSTR 595: Readings in Soviet History


Co-director of the Russian Studies Program

Faculty affiliate and member of the advisory council of the Central and Southwest Asian Studies Center


Research Interests

Russian Orthodox belief and practice; pilgrimage; the radical right and religion in late imperial Russia; apostasy & (de)conversion narratives; miracle stories; saintly cults and holy relics


Self-narratives from the Russian Civil War

The image and cult of Patriarch St. Germogen in late imperial Russia

Antireligious museums in the early Soviet period

Apostate priests after the Revolution

A cultural and social history of the Moscow Zoo

The real war on Christmas: Bolshevik anti-Christmas campaigns in the 1920s


Cox Family Award for Teaching Excellence, College of Arts and Sciences, University of Montana (2012)

Rackham Distinguished Dissertation Award, University of Michigan (2005)