Dr. Miller joined the University of Northwestern faculty in 2008 after teaching for several years in Moscow. He teaches a wide range of courses in European and Russian history, offers a full year of Russian language instruction, and leads student research trips to Moscow.
As a specialist in the cultural history of late imperial and Soviet Russia, his research explores two primary themes: Russian-American and Orthodox-Protestant connections. Matt and his wife Terri are active members of their congregation and volunteer in teaching ministries. Twin daughters Claire and Amelia share their love of conversation, reading, and travel.
- Ph.D. University of Minnesota
- M.A. Wheaton College
- B.A. Miami University
- Russian language program, Moscow State University
- History of Russia
- History of Modern Europe
- History of Christianity
The parts of the discipline of history that most intrigue and fascinate me are...
Connections among people of different cultures and relationships among believers of different confessions.
One of the things I enjoy most in the classroom is...
Helping students understand complex issues from a variety of perspectives.
Currently, I am working on...
Writing a biography of Paul B. Anderson (1894-1985), an outstanding American Christian leader in service among Russians. As a leading western specialist on Orthodox Christianity in the USSR he spoke out on the persecution of believers and human rights abuses in the Soviet Union.
Some interesting things I have done in the past include...
In 1990 and 1991 I lived in Leningrad for ten months and experienced the last days of the Soviet Union. From 1997 to 2008 I worked along with my family in Moscow; we served with the Russian-American Christian University and the Evangelical Free Church.
Advice I would give to college students:
- Read widely.
- Travel off the beaten path.
- Develop friendships with people whose opinions and backgrounds stretch you!
- John R. Mott, the American YMCA, and Revolutionary Russia (Bloomington, Indiana: Slavica Publishers/Indiana University, 2020).
- The American YMCA and Russian Culture: The Preservation and Expansion of Orthodox Christianity, 1900-1940 (Lanham, Maryland: Lexington Books, 2013).
- “The YMCA Press, Russian Orthodoxy, and Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn” in Solzhenitsyn and American Culture: The Russian Soul in the West (Notre Dame, Indiana: University of Notre Dame Press, forthcoming in October 2020).
- “Eastern Christianity in the Twin Cities: The Churches of Minneapolis and St. Paul, 1989-2014,”Modern Greek Studies Yearbook 30/31 (2014/2015): 101-144.
- “The American YMCA and Russian Politics: Critics and Supporters of Socialism, 1900-1940” in New Perspectives on Russian-American Relations (New York: Routledge, 2015): 161-177.
- “A Hunger for Books: The American YMCA Press and Russian Readers,” Religion, State and Society 38:1 (March 2010): 53–73.
Russian Language Articles
- “Paul B. Anderson, the American YMCA, and Russian Orthodox Christians, 1900-1940,” Messenger of St. Petersburg University: History (issue 1, 2016): 42-51.
- “The American YMCA and the YMCA Press, 1914-1940,” Messenger of the Russian Christian Movement 201:1 (2013): 136-145.
- Julie deGraffenried and Zoe Knox, eds., Voices of the Voiceless: Religion, Communism, and the Keston Archive (2019), Journal of Church and State (forthcoming in 2020).
- Sergei I. Zhuk, Soviet Americana: The Cultural History of Russian and Ukrainian Americanists (2018), The Soviet and Post-Soviet Review 47:2 (July 2020): 223-227.
- Dominic Erdozain, ed., The Dangerous God: Christianity and the Soviet Experiment (2017), East-West Church Report 27:4 (2019): 15-16.
- Paul Mojzes, ed., North American Churches and the Cold War (2018), East-West Church Report 27:3 (2019): 15-16.
- Erin Elizabeth Redihan, The Olympics and the Cold War, 1948-1968: Sport as Battleground in the U.S.-Soviet Rivalry (2017), Journal of Russian-American Studies, 2:2 (November 2018): 140-142.
- Bryn Geffert and Theofanis G. Stavrou, Eastern Orthodox Christianity: The Essential Texts (2016), Modern Greek Studies Yearbook 32/33 (2016/2017): 407-409.
- D. Oliver Herbel, Turning to Tradition: Converts and the Making of an American Orthodox Church (2014), Modern Greek Studies Yearbook 30/31 (2014/2015): 517-521.
- Johannes Miroslav Oravecz, God as Love: The Concept and Spiritual Aspects of Agapē in Modern Russian Religious Thought (2014), Modern Greek Studies Yearbook 30/31 (2014/2015): 521-525.
- Christopher Birchall, Embassy, Emigrants, and Englishmen: The Three Hundred Year History of a Russian Orthodox Church in London (2014), Russian Review 74:3 (July 2015): 513-514.
- Michael Hughes, Beyond Holy Russia: The Life and Times of Stephen Graham (2014), Russian Review 74:2 (April 2015): 333-334.
- James Cracraft, Two Shining Souls: Jane Addams, Leo Tolstoy, and the Quest for Global Peace (2012), Modern Greek Studies Yearbook 28/29 (2012/2013): 379-382.
- Ilya Vinkovetsky, Russian America: An Overseas Colony of a Continental Empire, 1804–1867 (2011) Russian Review 71:1 (January 2012): 155–156.
- Barbara Skinner, The Western Front of the Eastern Church: Uniate and Orthodox Conflict in 18th-century Poland, Ukraine, Belarus, and Russia (2009), Modern Greek Studies Yearbook 26/27 (2010/2011): 365-368.
- Bryn Geffert, Eastern Orthodox and Anglicans: Diplomacy, Theology, and the Politics of Interwar Ecumenism (2010), Modern Greek Studies Yearbook 26/27 (2010/2011): 382-385.
- Andrey P. Puzynin, The Tradition of the Gospel Christians: A Study of Their Identity and Theology during the Russian, Soviet, and Post-Soviet Periods (2010), East-West Church and Ministry Report 19:3 (Summer 2011): 15–16.
- Zoe Knox, Russian Society and the Orthodox Church: Religion in Russia after Communism (2005), East-West Church and Ministry Report 15:2 (Spring 2007): 15.
- Donald Fairbairn, Eastern Orthodoxy through Western Eyes (2002) and Nikolas K. Gvosdev, Emperors and Elections: Reconciling the Orthodox Tradition with Modern Politics (2000), Modern Greek Studies Yearbook 18/19 (2002/2003): 395–398.
- Excellence in Scholarship Award, University of Northwestern, 2016.
- Travel Grant, Kennan Institute, for conference on “Americans in Revolutionary Petrograd,” European University at St. Petersburg, Russia, 2017.
- Travel Grant, National Endowment for the Humanities Summer Institute, “America's Russian-Speaking Immigrants & Refugees: 20th Century Migration and Memory,” Columbia University, New York City, 2013.
- Travel Grant, Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn Russia Abroad Library, Moscow, Russia, for conference on “The YMCA Press in the History of Russian Publishing Abroad,” 2012.
- Travel Grant, National Endowment for the Humanities Summer Institute, “America Engages Russia, 1880–1930: Studies in Cultural Interaction,” New York Public Library, New York City, 2009.
- Association for Slavic, East European, and Eurasian Studies
- Association for the Study of Eastern Christian History and Culture
- History of Russia
- History of Renaissance and Reformation Europe
- History of 18th and 19th-Century Europe
- History of 20th-Century Europe
- History of Western Civilization
- Introduction to Historical Studies
- Russian Language and Culture
- Beginning Russian Language