Marsha Siefert

Academic Rank: 
Associate Professor
Budapest, Nador u. 11
+36 1 327-3000 x 2110

Marsha Siefert specializes in cultural and communications history, particularly media industries and public diplomacy, from the nineteenth-century to the present.  Two of her several edited books deal with the former Soviet Union and she is part of the Russian, Ukrainian and Eurasian history group at CEU.

From 2012 she has been the co-organizer of the initiative, Labor History for the 21st Century in a Global Context,  and her new book, Labor in State-Socialist Europe, 1945-1989: Contributions to a History of Work, will be appearing with CEU Press. 

Recent publications on cinematic diplomacy appear in Socialist Internationalism in the Cold War: Exploring the Second World (London: Palgrave Macmillan, 2016); Cold War Crossings: International Travel and Exchange in the Soviet Bloc, 1940s-1960s (College Station, TX: Texas A&M Press, 2014); Divided Dreamworlds? The Cultural Cold War East and West (Amsterdam: Amsterdam University Press, 2012); and Cold War Cultures: Perspectives on Eastern and Western European Societies (New York: Berghahn, 2012).

From her ongoing project on the history of ninteteenth-century communications infrastructure, "The Russian Empire and the International Telegraph Union, 1856-1875," is forthcoming in the book, History of the International Telecommunication Union. Transnational Techno-Diplomacy from the Telegraph to the Internet.

Since coming to CEU, she has supervised 84 MA theses; 8 were awarded the department's Hanák Prize in Modern History.  She welcomes students interested in culture, communications and media history from the nineteenth-century to the present.

Fellowships and Awards

  • Inaugural Fellow in the Study of Russia and Ballet, Center for Ballet and the Arts & the Jordan Center for the Advanced Study of Russia, New York University, 25 January-13 May 2016.
  • Humanities Grant (with Susan Zimmermann), “Laboring Lives: The Experience of Work in Eastern Europe,” 2015-2017.
  • Honorary Research Associate, Graduate School for East and Southeast European Studies, Ludwig Maximillian University-Munich and University of Regensburg.
  • St. Antony's College, Oxford University, Academic Visitor January-June 2014
  • Short-term grant, Kennan Institute, Washington DC, October 2013
  • Grant Partner, “Visegrad Cinemas,” Visegrad Foundation, 2011
  • Mellon Fellowship, Harry Ransom Center, 2008
  • Visiting Research Fellow, Rothermere American Institute, Oxford University, January–May 2007
  • Mobility Grants from CEU-SEP to lecture at the Department of History, the National University of "Kyiv-Mohyla Academy," Kyiv, September—October 2007, at the Faculty of Philosophy, Department of the History and Theory of Culture, and the Institute of Ethnography, University of Sofia  “Kliment Ohridsky,” May 2001; at the Department of Foreign Languages, Buryat State University, Ulan-Ude, and the Moscow State University Sociology Department, Moscow, April 2001; and at the Journalism Department at West University in Timisoara and Mass Communication Department at the University of Bucharest, Romania, January 1997
  • National Endowment for the Humanities Summer Seminar, Princeton University, 2000
  • Senior Associate Member, St. Antony’s College, Oxford University, Hilary term, 2000
  • Bridgebuilder's Award, Muhlenberg College, for excellence in teaching students with learning disabilities, 1995
  • Association of American Publishers Award for the "Most Outstanding Single Issue" of a Journal, “Mass Culture and Perestroika in the Soviet Union," 1991
  • U.S. Council for World Communications Year 83, Commendation for World Communications: A Handbook

Selected Professional Activities

  • Co-Editor, Historical Studies in Eastern Europe and Eurasia, CEU Press (4 volumes published)
  • Co-Editor, Longman Communication Books in International communication, Longman Publishers, (23 volumes published)
  • Co-Editor, Communications and Society Book Series, Oxford University Press, (15 volumes published)
  • Editorial Boards: Popular Music and SocietyNew Media and SocietyInternational Communication Gazette; Handbook of New Media, Interstitio: East European Review of Historical AnthropologyMedia and Religion (Moscow); Global Histories of Work (de Gruyter Oldenbourg)
  • Editor, Journal of Communication, 1985-1991, Oxford University Press, Circulation: 7,500

Courses taught in the previous years

  • Media, Communication and Communism in International Perspective
  • Culture, Commerce, and Diplomacy: An Entangled History
  • European Labor History in Global Context
  • Biography and Oral History
  • International Communication
  • Oral History and Public Memory

Doctoral Supervision

  • Between Arts and Crafts: Soviet Modernization of the Art Industry, 1932-1965/ Elizaveta Berezina (current)
  • Links in the Chain: Department Stores and the Transformation of the Economic, Social and Urban Environment in Socialist Yugoslavia, 1950s-1980s/ Ivana Mihaela Žimbrek (current)
  • Concepts of Death and Suffering in Revolutionary Festivals: Comparing the Experience of the French and Russian Revolutions / Anastasia Papushina (current)
  • Tito's Proliferation Puzzle: The Yugoslav Nuclear Program, 1948-1970 / Marko Miljkovic (current)
  • Producing Socialism while Making Films: Film Industry in Yugoslavia and the Soviet Union (1957-1972) / Agne Rimkute (current)
  • Labouring along: industrial workers and the making of postwar romania (1944-1958) / Adrian Grama (2017)
  • Designer socialism: the aesthetic turn in Soviet Russia after Stalin / Yulia Karpova (2015)
  • Silenced ethnicity: Russian-Estonian intermarriages in Soviet Estonia (oral history) / Uku Lember (2014)
  • The Yugoslav youth press (1968-1980): student movements, subcultures and communist alternative media / Marko Zubak (2013)
  • A garden with mellow fruits of refinement: music theatres and cultural politics in Cairo and Istanbul, 1867-1892 / Adam Mestyan (2011)
  • Engineering the human soul: science fiction in communist Romania 1955-1989 / Eugen Stancu (2011)
  • Soviet cinema Soviet spaces: everyday life in Soviet film (1965-1985) / Sergei Dobrynin (2006)


PhD, Communication, University of Pennsylvania
Ph.D. (Nostrification), Literature, University of Szeged
MA, Communication, University of Pennsylvania
MA, Folklore, Indiana University
BS with Distinction, Music and Literature, Indiana University