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Arts, Humanities & Social Sciences

Department of Languages & Literatures

Russian - Ukrainian Plates

Russian

Course Descriptions

This is a general guide to the courses available in Russian. Courses may change over time, and some courses are not available some quarters. For the most up-to-date listing of available courses, log on to PioneerWeb and view course schedules.

RUSS 1001, 1002, 1003 Elementary Russian (4 qtr. hrs. each)
Basic grammar, syntax and vocabulary; emphasis on oral skills; introduction to Russian culture. Three quarter sequence.

RUSS 1416 Introduction to Russian Culture: Evil and the Supernatural (4 qtr. hrs.)
What is evil? Where does it come from and what place does it have in our world? What, if anything, are we supposed to do about it? We examine how Russian writers wrestle with these thorny questions, and how they engage in a dialogue with the Russian folk tradition and the Orthodox church—two rich resources for thinking about and coping with evil. We read world-famous Russian classics such as Dostoevsky, Pushkin, Gogol and Bulgakov, as well as Russian folk tales, writings produced by Russian Orthodox clergy and recent critical studies that represent a broad range of approaches to the problem of evil. No knowledge of Russian is necessary; all class discussion, readings, and writing are in English.

RUSS 1613 Introduction to Russian Culture and Civilization (4 qtr. hrs.)
This course surveys Russia's cultural past and present. Although it touches on aspects of Soviet culture, the main emphasis lies on what some people would call the "real Russian culture," eclipsed for seventy years under Communist regime. The course surveys the various attitudes of Russian thinkers and authors towards the question of national identity and national destiny. Examples of Russian high culture (literature, art, film, music) and the Russian Religious faith (Orthodoxy) are discussed alongside with daily life and folk beliefs. The course includes several significant Russian films. The course format consists of lectures, slides, video and audio presentations. Questions and discussions are strongly encouraged. All materials are in English. No prior knowledge of Russian literature or culture is required.

RUSS 1917 Russian Revolution in Literature and History (4 qtr. hrs.)
The course introduces students to the literature and history of the Russian revolution of 1917. Students examine how Russian literature helped pave the way for the revolution and how literature and film helped Russians make sense of the radical transformation of their society. Students gain insight into the reciprocal relationship of literature and politics, learning how literature shaped the revolutionary movement and how the revolution inspired new forms of artistic expression. All course materials in English translation. No prerequisites.

RUSS 1922 The Soviet Experiment in Literature and Film (4 qtr. hrs.)
Architects of the Soviet experiment claimed to create a radically new type of society and person, superior to all that came before. What were the defining features and founding myths of the Soviet identity, as propagandized by the government? How did this imagined identity clash with realities of life in the USSR? What cultural figures opposed the official discourse, and what artistic modes of resistance did they develop? To explore these questions, we will read fiction and poetry by authors central to defining and contesting the Soviet experiment, including Maiakovskii, Gladkov, Ginzburg, Pelevin, Dovlatov, and Petrushevskaya, and watch ground-breaking films by Vertov, Tarkovsky, Daneliya and others. All materials are in English. No prior knowledge of Russian literature or culture is required.

RUSS 2001 Second Stage Russian (4 qtr. hrs.)
Review of grammar, development of all language and cultural skills. Prerequisite: RUSS 1003 or equivalent. First quarter of two quarter sequence.

RUSS 2002 Second Stage Russian II (4 qtr. hrs.)
Review of grammar, development of all language and cultural skills. Prerequisite: RUSS 2001 or equivalent. Second quarter of two quarter sequence.

RUSS 2110 Russian in a Cultural Context (4 qtr. hrs.)
Continued development of Russian language and cultural skills with focus on all aspects of Russian culture, particularly Russian literature. Prerequisite: RUSS 2002 or equivalent.

RUSS 2116 Russian 19th-Century Novel: Society, Identity, and the Rise of Prose Fiction (4 qtr. hrs.)
This course introduces students to classical Russian novels by world-famous authors, including Pushkin, Lermontov, Turgenev, Dostoevsky, and Tolstoy. Students develop an ability to interpret each work with a dual focus on text and context. Students deepen their appreciation of literary texts as works of art through learning to read closely and focusing on literary devices such as the narrator's voice, plot, structure, and figurative language. Students also learn to relate novels to their historical and cultural context, the better to understand how Russian writers responded to their country's intractable problems that included a crisis of cultural identity, the injustices of serfdom, and debates about women's place in society. All readings in English translation. No prerequisites.

RUSS 2416 Russian Classics in the Original: Evil and the Supernatural (4 qtr. hrs.)
What is evil? Where does it come from and what place does it have in our world? What, if anything, are we supposed to do about it? We examine how Russian writers wrestle with these thorny questions, and how they engage in a dialogue with the Russian folk tradition and the Orthodox church—two rich resources for thinking about and coping with evil. We read world-famous Russian classics such as Dostoevsky, Pushkin, Gogol, and Bulgakov, as well as Russian folk tales, writings produced by Russian Orthodox clergy, and recent critical studies that represent a broad range of approaches to the problem of evil. Readings and writing in Russian. Prerequisite: RUSS 2110 or equivalent.

RUSS 2917 Russian Revolution in Literature and History (4 qtr. hrs.)
The course introduces students to the literature and history of the Russian revolution of 1917. Students examine how Russian literature helped pave the way for the revolution and how literature and film helped Russians make sense of the radical transformation of their society. Students gain insight into the reciprocal relationship of literature and politics, learning how literature shaped the revolutionary movement and how the revolution inspired new forms of artistic expression. Students develop their Russian reading and writing skills. Selected readings and all essays in Russian. Prerequisite: RUSS 2110 or instructor approval.

RUSS 3101 Advanced Conversation & Composition (4 qtr. hrs.)
Continued improvement of Russian language skills in areas of style and syntax. Prerequisite: RUSS 2110 or equivalent. First quarter of two quarter sequence.

RUSS 3300 Short Russian Prose (4 qtr. hrs.)
An advanced conversation and composition course based on Russian prose. Prerequisite: RUSS 3101 or equivalent, or permission of instructor.

RUSS 3500 Structure of Russian (4 qtr. hrs.)
Linguistic study of how Russian vocabulary building and Russian grammar operate. Prerequisite: RUSS 3101 or equivalent, or permission of instructor.

RUSS 3650 Soviet and Post Soviet Cinema (4 qtr. hrs.)
Film course concentrating on the works of Andrei Tarkovskii. Open to non-Russian speaking students. Prerequisite: RUSS 3500 or equivalent, or permission of instructor.

RUSS 3701 Topics in Russian Literature (4 qtr. hrs.)
Selected topics, authors and movements in medieval, Russian, Soviet and post-Soviet literature. May be repeated for credit. Prerequisite: RUSS 3500 or equivalent, or permission of instructor.

RUSS 3850 Working with Russian Media (4 qtr. hrs.)
Multimedia course emphasizing new media in Russian culture and society. Prerequisite: RUSS 3500 or equivalent, or permission of instructor.

RUSS 3991 Independent Study (1 to 5 qtr. hrs.)

RUSS 3995 Independent Research (1 to 5 qtr. hrs.)

RUSS 3997 Russian: Learn Through Service (1 to 5 qtr. hrs.)
Internship and/or service learning for credit with local organizations in the Russian-speaking community. Must be approved by both Russian faculty and organization participating.

RUSS 3998 Honors Thesis (1 to 4 qtr. hrs.)