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Vera Shevzov joined the Smith College faculty in 1994. She earned her B.A., M.Phil. and Ph.D. from Yale University. Supported at various stages by the National Council for Eurasian and East European Research, the National Endowment of the Humanities and the Social Science Research Council, her research has focused on issues related to the notions of sacred community and collective religious identity; lived Christianity; women in Christianity; Christianity and visual culture; Christianity and historical memory; as well as Christianity and ethnic and national identities.
The geographic area of Shevzov's research—Russia—is a region where western and eastern forms of Christianity have historically met (and sometimes collided). Her book Russian Orthodoxy on the Eve of Revolution (Oxford, 2004) was awarded the Frank S. and Elizabeth D. Brewer Prize of the American Society of Church History. Other publications include contributions to volume six of A People's History of Christianity (Augsburg Fortress Press, 2007), Sacred Stories: Religion and Spirituality in Modern Russia (Indiana University Press, 2007) and Letters from Heaven: Popular Religion in Russia and the Ukraine (Toronto University Press, 2006). She is currently writing a book on the image of Mary in modern and contemporary Russia.
Shevzov teaches courses in Christian studies and regularly participates in team-taught departmental courses on world religions and approaches to the study of religion.