Kushner Pavel Ivanovich (pseudonyms ‑ Knysh, Knyshev)

26 January [ 14 January] 1889 (1889-01-26), Grodno — 14 March 1968 (1968-03-15), Moscow


Biography, education, career:

In 1947 he defended his Candidate’s Dissertation titled The Western Part of the Lithuanian Ethnographic Territory, in 1951 ‑ his Doctoral dissertation titled Ethnic Territories and Ethnic Borders. From March 1917 he successfully occupied the positions of member of the executive committee of the Moscow City Council, its first secretary, later assistant to the head of the labor department of the executive committee of the Moscow City Council; form October 1917 he was a secretary of the Military Revolutionary Committee, member of the presidium of the Moscow City Council and from the end of 1917 member of the board of the People's Commissariat of Labor of the RSFSR. Since 1921 he taught at Jacob Sverdlov Communist University, from the late 1920s he headed the department of the history of the social forms development. Kushner successfully occupied the positions of Head of the Sociological section at the Institute of History of the Russian Association of Scientific Research Institutes of Social Sciences (1929‑1930), Researcher at the Research Institute of the Peoples of the North and Professor of the Communist Institute of Journalism (1931‑1932). He was also the Head of the Department of Worker Newspaper, editor of the Krasnaya Tatariya. In the summer of 1925 he led an ethnographic expedition to Kyrgyzstan. He was the trade representative in Lithuania (1932‑1934) and in Norway (1934‑1935). In 1936 Kushner headed the Eastern Sector of the People's Commissariat for Foreign Trade. He successfully occupied the positions of Deputy for Economic Affairs, Chairman of the Committee on the Administration of Scientists and Educational Institutions under the CEC of the USSR (1936‑1938), Deputy Director for Science of the Museum of the Peoples of the USSR (1938‑1941). In 1941 he headed a group to study the ethnic composition of Central and Southeastern Europe at the USSR Institute of Ethnography: such work was required for the preparation of maps in connection with the expected redistribution of European borders and the current military-political situation in the world. He headed the sector of ethnographic statistics and cartography (1944‑1952) and the Slavic-Russian sector (1952‑1959) at the Institute of Ethnography of the USSR.

Areas of expertise: Ethnogeography; History and ethnography of Slavic peoples; History and ethnography of the peoples of Central Asia

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