Historian, Lecturer, Institut d'études politiques de Lyon
Grégory Dufaud is a specialist of the Soviet Union.
His first research focused upon the repatriation of Soviet citizens who had ended up in France as a result of the war.
He then devoted himself to the question of nationalities policy—a subject upon which he has written several publications.
Since then, he has been interested in medicine and health, and his research now focuses mainly (but not exclusively) upon psychiatry.
As part of his work on the question of psychiatry, he aims firstly to examine the role which psychiatrists were assigned within the Soviet project of transformation as well as the importance of the protection afforded to people involved in the creation of a new society. He also wishes to identify the modalities of the psychiatrists’ exploration of subjectivity, and how they took part in the creation of social and political norms by redefining the borders between the normal and the pathological. But this research goes beyond the frontiers of the Soviet Union: further fields of enquiry include the transnational exchanges which took place within the transformation of Soviet psychiatry and the influence the latter enjoyed abroad.
Grégory Dufaud also publishes works on historiography and on the epistemology of history.
He has held teaching posts in both schools (collège and lycée) and universities (notably at the Université Paris I, at the French University College in Moscow, at the Moscow State Institute of International Relations, and at the Université Paris-Est Créteil).
With Larissa Zakharova (http://www.cercec.fr/larissa-zakharova.html), Grégory Dufaud is responsible for the joint CERMES3-CERCEC research project—“Governing science, governing through science: Science and technology in the Soviet Union, 1945-1991”—which is supported by the LabEx TEPSIS research grant (Sep. 2016—Aug. 2018).
The main goal of this project is to produce an account of the deployment and workings of science in the Soviet Union post-1945. Through a precise and well-documented investigation, it aims to not only take part in the renewal of the understanding of Soviet authoritarianism, but also to contribute to the more general idea of the place which was given to science (including biomedical science) and technology in Soviet societies. The Soviet Union indeed continues to be almost completely absent from general historical and sociological studies of science and technology in the XXth century, despite the fact that communism placed both at the heart of its transformative project: it wished not only to change the economic, social and natural world based upon scientific knowledge and technical innovations, but also claimed to offer a unique mode of knowledge through Marxism and Leninism. Science and technology were supposed to simultaneously enable change and be its expression—a twin movement which this joint research project will seek to explore.