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Fall 2005

Russian Language Courses
Advanced Russian Language
Courses for Russian-Speaking Students
Introductory and Survey Courses
Intermediate and Seminar Courses
Graduate Level Courses
Slavic Courses
Eastern European
CGS Courses

Introductory Language Courses

RUSS001 Elementary Russian I
Prior language experience required
001 MTWRF 10 a.m. - 11 a.m. Shardakova
002 MTWRF 3 p.m. - 4 p.m. Oleinichenko

This course develops elementary skills in reading, speaking, understanding and writing the Russian language. We will work with an exciting range of authentic written materials, videos and recordings relating to the dynamic scene of Russia today. At the end of the course students will be comfortable with the Russian alphabet and will be able to read basic texts (signs, menus, news headlines) and participate in elementary conversations about daily life (who you are, what you do every day, where you are from, likes and dislikes).

RUSS003 Intermediate Russian I
Prior language requirement required
001 MTWR 9 a.m. - 10 a.m. Shardakova
002 MTWR 5 p.m. - 6 p.m. Oleinichenko

Prerequisite(s): RUSS 001 and 002 or placement exam

This course will develop your ability to use the Russian language in the context of typical everyday situations, including university life, family, shopping, entertainment, etc. Role-playing, skits, short readings from literature and the current press, and video clips will be used to help students improve their language skills. At the end of the semester you will be able to read and write short texts about your daily schedule and interests, to understand brief newspaper articles, films and short literary texts, and to express your opinions in Russian. In combination with RUSS 004, this course prepares students to satisfy the language competency requirement.

Advanced Russian Language

RUSS311 Advanced Conversation and Composition
001 MWF 2 p.m. - 3 p.m. Korshunova

Prerequisite(s): RUSS 004 or placement exam. Prior language experience is required.

This course develops students' skills in speaking and writing about topics in Russian literature, contemporary society, politics, and everyday life. Topics include women, work and family; sexuality; the economic situation; environmental problems; and life values. Materials include selected short stories by 19th and 20th century Russian authors, video-clips of interviews, excerpts from films, and articles from the Russian media. Continued work on grammar and vocabulary building.

RUSS402 Pushkin
Distribution III: Arts and Letters
401 TR 10:30 a.m.- 12 p.m. Steiner
Cross-listed with RUSS505

The writer's lyrics, narrative poems, and drama.

RUSS412 19th Century: Romantics and Realists
Previous language experience required
001 TR 1:30 p.m. - 3 p.m. Verkholantsev

This course combines an advanced work on Russian language with study of some of the fundamental movements, works and figures of nineteenth-century Russian literature and culture. Works studied will include poetry and short prose by some of the acknowledged masters of Russian literature (Pushkin, Lermontov, Gogol’, Pavlova, Dostoevsky, Tolstoy and Chekhov), as well as painting and sculpture of the period. Work on Russian will be devoted to composition, advanced grammar, matters of style, and increased proficiency in spoken Russian. The course is primarily intended for students who speak no Russian at home.

RUSS461 20th Century Russian Literature: Fiction and Reality
Prior language experience required

301 TR 3 p.m. - 4:30 p.m.

Bourlatskaya Russian 461 introduces the major movements and figures of twentieth-century Russian literature and culture, works of modern Russian writers, and feature films. In studying the poetry of Mayakovsky, Block, and Pasternak, students will become familiar with the important literary movements of the Silver Age. The reality of the Soviet era will be examined in the works of Zamyatin, Babel, and Zoshchenko. There will be a brief survey of the development of Soviet cinema, including films of Eisenstein, Tarkovsky, and Mikhalkov. Literary trends in the later Soviet period will be seen in war stories, prison-camp literature, village prose, and the writings of female authors of that time.

Classes will be conducted entirely in Russian. This advanced Russian-language course is intended primarily for students who have spoken Russian at home and who have gained competency in written Russian.

Courses for Russian-Speaking Students

RUSS360 Literacy in Russian I
001 MWF 9 a.m. - 10 a.m. Korshunova

This course is intended for students who have spoken Russian at home and seek to achieve proficiency in the language. Topics will include an intensive introduction to the Russian writing system and grammar, focusing on exciting materials and examples drawn from classic and contemporary Russian and emigre culture and social life. Students who complete this course in combination with RUSS 361 satisfy the language requirement in Russian. Students should have completed no more than three years of formal schooling in Russian, or the equivalent. Students who have attended Russian school for more than three years may be permitted to enroll with the instructor's permission.

RUSS461 20th Century Russian Literature: Fiction and Reality
Prior language experience required
301 TR 3 p.m. - 4:30 p.m. Bourlatskaya
Distribution III pending

TAUGHT IN RUSSIAN

Russian 461 introduces the major movements and figures of twentieth-century Russian literature and culture, works of modern Russian writers, and feature films. In studying the poetry of Mayakovsky, Block, and Pasternak, students will become familiar with the important literary movements of the Silver Age. The reality of the Soviet era will be examined in the works of Zamyatin, Babel, and Zoshchenko. There will be a brief survey of the development of Soviet cinema, including films of Eisenstein, Tarkovsky, and Mikhalkov. Literary trends in the later Soviet period will be seen in war stories, prison-camp literature, village prose, and the writings of female authors of that time.

Classes will be conducted entirely in Russian. This advanced Russian-language course is intended primarily for students who have spoken Russian at home and who have gained competency in written Russian.

Introductory and Survey Courses

RUSS107 Russian Outside the Classroom
301 Monday - Russian Tea 5 p.m.- 6 p.m., WT - Russian Table 12 p.m. - 1 p.m., film series on W 5 p.m. - 8 p.m.,
Yakubova/Kruidenier

The goal of RUSS 107 is to provide students of Russian language and Russian heritage speakers with formalized opportunities to improve their conversation and comprehension skills while experiencing various aspects of Slavic culture. There will be no weekly assignments or readings, but all students will be expected to contribute at a level equivalent to their Russian-speaking abilities both in class and on the newsletter final project. The course consists of attending 2 out of 3 hrs/week of lunch-time conversation (W/Th 12-1:30) in addition to a tea-drinking hour in the department (F 4-5pm), film viewings, and a single outside cultural event (e.g., concert of Russian music at the Kimmel Center).

RUSS145 Russian Literature to 1870s
All readings and lectures in English
Gen Req III: Arts & Letters
001 TR 3 p.m. - 4:30 p.m. Steiner

Major Russian writers in English translation: Pushkin, Gogol, Turgenev, early Tolstoy, and early Dostoevsky.

RUSS190 Terrorism
All readings and lectures in English
Distribution II: History and Tradition
001 MW 2 p.m. - 3:30 p.m. Todorov

This course studies the emergence of organized terrorism in nineteenth century Russia. It examines the philosophy of the terrorist struggle through its methods, causes, various codes, and manifestoes that defined its nature for the times to come. We critique intellectual movements such as nihilism, anarchism, and populism that inspired terrorism defining the political violence and disorder as beneficial acts. The issue of policing terrorism becomes central when we study a police experiment to infiltrate, delegitimize and ultimately neutralize the terrorist networks in late imperial Russia. The discussions draw on the ideology and political efficacy of the conspiratorial mode of operation, terrorist tactics such as assassination and hostage-taking, the cell structure of the groups and underground incognito of the strikers, their maniacal self-denial, revolutionary asceticism, underground mentality, faceless omnipotence, and other attributes-intensifiers of its mystique. We analyze the technology and phenomenology of terror that generate symmetrical disorganizing threats to any organized form of government and reveal the terrorist act as a sublime end as well as a lever for achieving practical causes. Our study traces the rapid proliferation of terrorism in the twentieth century and its impact on the public life in Western Europe, the Balkans, and America.

RUSS197 Madness and Madmen
All readings and lectures in English
General Requirement III: Arts and Letters
401 TR 1:30 p.m. - 3 p.m. Vinitsky
Cross-listed with COML197

This course will explore the theme of madness in Russian literature and arts from the medieval period through the October Revolution of 1917. The discussion will include formative masterpieces by Russian writers (Pushkin, Dostoevsky, Tolstoy, Chekhov, and Bulgakov), painters (Repin, Vrubel, Filonov), composers (Mussorgsky, Tchaikovsky, and Stravinsky), and film-directors (Protazanov, Eisenstein), as well as non-fictional documents such as Russian medical, judicial, political, and philosophical treatises and essays on madness.

The problem of madness has preoccupied Russian minds since the very beginning of Russia's troubled history. This subject has been dealt with repeatedly in medieval vitae and modern stories, plays, paintings, films, and operas, as well as medical, political and philosophical essays. This issue has been treated by a number of brilliant Russian authors and artists not only as a medical or psychological matter, but also as a metaphysical one, touching the deepest levels of human consciousness, encompassing problems of suffering, imagination, history, sex, social and world order, evil, retribution, death, and the after-life. Therefore it is illuminating for a deeper understanding of Russian culture to examine how major Russian authors have depicted madness and madmen in their works, how these works reflected the authors' psychological, aesthetic and ideological views, as well as historical and cultural processes in Russia.

Intermediate and Seminar Courses

RUSS202 Tolstoy
All readings and lectures in English
Distribution III: Arts & Letters
Benjamin Franklin Seminars
301 TR 10:30 a.m. - 12:00 p.m. Vinitsky

Readings will include WAR AND PEACE, ANNA KARENINA, and other works in translation; Tolstoy's innovations, his philosophy of history, and his theories of art.

RUSS299 Independent Study
See dept. for section numbers, permission needed from instructor

RUSS399 Supervised Work
See Dept. for section numbers
Permission needed from instructor

Graduate Level Courses

RUSS505 Pushkin
401 TR 10:30 a.m. - 12 p.m. Steiner
Cross-listed with RUSS402

The writer's lyrics, narrative poems, and drama.

SLAV526 In Defiance of Babel: the Quest for a Universal Language
401 R 9:00 a.m. - 12:00 p.m. Verkholantsev
Cross-listed with COML526

The course explores the historical trajectory of the possibility of discovering or creating an ideal universal language as a medium for explaining the essence of human experience and a means for universal communication.

The question of a possibility of universal human communication has been as vital and thought-provoking throughout the history of humanity as it is at the present. Particularly, the idea that the language spoken in the Garden of Eden was a language which entirely expressed the essence of all possible things and concepts has occupied the minds of scholars for at least two millennia. Ever since the myth about the Tower of Babel and confusion of languages, there were attempts to overcome the divine punishment and find the way to harmonious existence. For theologians, the possibility of recovering or recreating of a universal language would allow to experience divinity, for philosophers to apprehend the laws of nature, for mystic-cabalists to acquire access to hidden knowledge. This idea still continues to provoke scholars and echoes in the modern linguistic theory of universal grammar and in various attempts to create artificial languages, starting with Esperanto and ending with a language for cosmic intercourse.

Slavic Courses

SLAV399 Independent Study

SLAV503 Elementary Polish I
Offered through the Penn Language Center
680 MW 6 p.m. - 8 p.m. Sachs

SLAV532 Elementary Czech I
Offered through Penn Language Center
680 TR 6:30 p.m.- 8 p.m. Stejskal

SLAV590 Elementary Ukrainian I
680 MR 4 p.m. - 6:30 p.m. Rudnytsky

SLAV592 Intermediate Ukrainian I
680 MR 6:30 p.m. - 8:30 p.m. Rudnytsky

 

Eastern European

EEUR121 Elementary Hungarian I
680 TR 5:30 p.m. - 7 p.m. Mizsei

EEUR123 Intermediate Hungarian I
680 TR 4 p.m. - 5:30 p.m. Mizsei

Courses Offered Through CGS

RUSS001 Elementary Russian I
601 MW 6:30-9PM Oleinichenko
Non-CGS Students need permission from CGS
Cross-listed: RUSS-501

RUSS003 Intermediate Russian I
601 TR 5-7p.m. Oleinichenko

This course will develop your ability to use the Russian language in the context of typical everyday situations, including university life, family, shopping, entertainment, etc. Role-playing, skits, short readings from literature and the current press, and video clips will be used to help students improve their language skills. At the end of the semester you will be able to read and write short texts about your daily schedule and interests, to understand brief newspaper articles, films and short literary texts, and to express your opinions in Russian. In combination with RUSS 004, this course prepares students to satisfy the language competency requirement.

RUSS196 Russian Short Story
601 M 5:30-8:30p.m. Todorov
Distribution III: Arts & Letters

This course studies the development of 19th and 20th century Russian literature through one of its most distinct and highly recognized genres -- the short story. The readings include great masters of fiction such as Pushkin, Gogol, Dostoevsky, Tolstoy, Chekhov, Solzhenitsyn, and others. The course presents the best works of short fiction and situates them in a literary process that contributes to the history of a larger cultural-political context. Students will learn about the historical formation, poetic virtue, and thematic characteristics of major narrative modes such as romanticism, utopia, realism, modernism, socialist realism, and post-modernism. We critique the strategic use of various devices of literary representation such as irony, absurd, satire, grotesque, anecdote, etc. Some of the main topics and issues include: culture of the duel; the role of chance; the riddle of death; anatomy of madness; imprisonment and survival; the pathologies of St. Petersburg; terror and homo sovieticos.

RUSS426 Chekhov Stage & Screen
601 T 5:30-8:30p.m. Zubarev
Cross-listed: FILM-426
Distribution III: Arts & Letters

What's so funny, Mr. Chekhov?” This question is often asked by critics and directors who still are puzzled with Chekhov's definition of his four major plays as comedies. Traditionally, all of them are staged and directed as dramas, melodramas, or tragedies.

Should we cry or should we laugh at Chekhovian characters who commit suicide, or are killed, or simply cannot move to a better place of living? Is the laughable synonymous to comedy and the comic? Should any fatal outcome be considered tragic?

All these and other questions will be discussed during the course.

The course is intended to provide the participants with a concept of dramatic genre that will assist them in approaching Chekhov's plays as comedies.

In addition to reading Chekhov's works, Russian and western productions and film adaptations of Chekhov's works will be screened. Among them are, Vanya on 42nd Street with Andre Gregory, and Four Funny Families. Those who are interested will be welcome to perform and/or direct excerpts from Chekhov's works.

RUSS501 Elementary Russian I
601 MW 6:30-9p.m. Oleinichenko
Permission Needed From Department
Cross-listed: RUSS-001