Professor Viola is a specialist in 20th century Russian history, focusing on political and social history. Her research interests include gender, rurality, political culture, and violence in the era of Stalin.
She is the author of over 30 articles; five books; and the editor or co-editor of 19 books–A Researcher’s Guide to Sources of Soviet Social History in the 1930s (1990) (with Sheila Fitzpatrick); Russian Peasant Women (1992) (with Beatrice Farnsworth); Kollektivizatsiia i krest’ianskoe soprotivlenie na Ukraine: noaibr’ 1929-mart 1930 [Collectivization and Peasant Resistance in Ukraine: November 1929-March 1930] (1997) (with Valerii Vasil’ev); Riazanskaia derevnia v 1929-1930 gg.: khronika govokhruzheniia [The Riazan Countryside in 1929-1930: A Chronicle of Dizziness] (1998) (with S. Zhuravlev, T. McDonald, and A. Mel’nik); Tragediia sovetskoi derevni, 1927-1939: dokumenty i materialy, 5 volumes in 6 books [The Tragedy of the Soviet Countryside, 1927-1939: Documents and Materials] (1999-2006) (with V.P. Danilov and R.T. Manning); Contending with Stalinism: Soviet Power and Popular Resistance in the 1930s (2002); Politbiuro i krest’ianstvo: Vysylka, Spetsposelenie, 1930-1940 [The Politburo and the Peasantry: Exile, Special Settlements, 1930-1940] (2005-6) (with Sergei Krasil’nikov); Chekisty na skam’e podsudimykh [Chekhists on Trial] (2017) (with Marc Iunge and Jeffrey Rossman); Ekho bol’shogo terrora, 3 volumes in 4 books [Echo of the Great Terror], (2017-2019) (with Marc Iunge and Jeffrey Rossman); and Laboratories of Terror (2022) (with Marc Junge).
Professor Viola holds cross appointments with the Munk School and the Higher School of Economics (Russian National University).