The entrance to the Department of History’s office in Sidney Smith Hall

Maris Rowe-McCulloch

PhD Program


Major Comprehensive Exam Field: Modern Russian History
Minor Fields: Modern Jewish History; 20th Century Europe
Supervisor: Lynne Viola (with Doris Bergen and Anna Shternshis)
Dissertation Title: The Holocaust in a City Under Siege: Occupation, Mass Violence, Genocide in the Southern Russian City of Rostov-on-Don, 1941-1943

My dissertation examines life under occupation for residents of the Russian city of Rostov-on-Don during the multiple German occupations that took place between 1941 and 1943. I focus in particular on the history of the destruction of the Jewish community of Rostov, and situate it within the wider history of violence against civilians within the occupied city, including killings of Soviet Prisoners of War (POWs) and the mentally ill. I am interested in the connections between the war on the Eastern Front and the Holocaust, and the dynamic interactions between mass violence and the process of military occupying in an urban centre.

Major Awards and Scholarships:
SSHRC Joseph Armand Bombardier Graduate Scholarship (2014-2017)
Ed and Fran Sonshine Graduate Award in Holocaust Studies, Centre for Jewish Studies, U of T (2015, 2106)
DAAD Language Fellowship (2015)
Saul Kagan Claims Conference Fellowship in Advanced Shoah Studies (2014-2015)
Naim Mahlab Graduate Award in Jewish History, Centre for Jewish Studies, U of T (2014)
OGS (2013-2014)
Schiff Graduate Student Grant, Centre for Jewish Studies, U of T (2013)
Holocaust Education Foundation (HEF) Fellowship, Summer Institute on the Holocaust and Jewish Civilization (2013)
Tanenbaum Scholarship in Jewish Studies, Centre for Jewish Studies, University of Toronto (2012)
Avie Bennet Award, University of Toronto (2012-2013)


  • Honours BA, University of Toronto
  • MPhil, University of Oxford