Jonathan Waterlow received his PhD (DPhil) from the University of Oxford in 2012. He went on to hold a British Academy Postdoctoral Fellowship at St Antony’s College, Oxford, and was a Research Associate at the University of Bristol from 2016-18. He’s also been a Visiting Postdoctoral Fellow at the University of Toronto, and studied at the Universities of Edinburgh, St Andrews, and the Herzen State Pedagogical University in St Petersburg, Russia. He’s a founder at Voices in the Dark (, where he writes and podcasts.


It’s Only a Joke, Comrade! Humour, Trust and Everyday Life under Stalin

An Amazon Bestseller in Russian History, It’s Only a Joke, Comrade! uncovers the secret world of political jokes under Stalin’s dictatorship. It reveals how, despite the risk of 10-year sentences in the Gulag, ordinary people used humour to grapple with, make sense of, and share the experience of a life lived along the fault-lines of rhetoric and reality.


War Crimes Trials and Investigations: A Multi-Disciplinary Introduction

The first multi-disciplinary introduction to war crimes trials and investigations, this edited volume includes essays written by experts across a diverse range of fields. My co-editor and I set out to create the book that we wished had existed when we started out own research, so the book aims to equip readers with everything they need to know in order to navigate a complex and until now, deeply fragmented field. 

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The 48 Laws of Power in Practice

Robert Greene's The 48 Laws of Power has shaken the lives of millions. It's wielded by successful business executives, leading actors and musicians, and even by criminal kingpins. But how can you apply its lessons to your life? This short companion book draws on the in-depth series created for my popular podcast, Voices in the Dark, and explains how to use Greene’s book to make real, lasting change in your life.