Jolanta Mickute is a Spring 2017 Joseph P. Kazickas Visiting Assistant Professor in European Studies. She is Assistant Professor of History at Vytautas Magnus University in Kaunas, Lithuania. Her research examines political and cultural issues in the interwar period in Central and Eastern Europe. Her current work focuses on the experience of Jewish women in interwar Poland, including Vilnius and the surrounding region.
At Yale Professor Mickute is working on several projects, including a book on the Jewish community in interwar Poland and an article on the meanings of Vilne/Wilno/Vilnius for Jews, Wilna-born Poles, and Lithuanians in Kaunas, the capital of interwar Lithuania. Her book project, titled “Modern, Zionist, Feminist: The Politics of Culture, Ethnicity, and Gender in Interwar Poland, 1918-1939,” analyzes how Jewish women – fractured along class and generational lines – contended with their double marginality through political activism, social work, education, and work in the home. She explores how limits established by tradition, ethnicity, class, locale, and gender shaped Polish Jewish women’s identities during the 1920s and 1930s, but also shows that operating from the margins opened up space for activism.