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Summer 2008

RUSS197 Madness and Madmen in Russian Culture
All readings and lectures in English
Humanities and Social Sciences Sector (New Curriculum Only)
910 TR 5-8:10PM Vinitsky

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.

RUSS434 Media and Terrorism
All readings and lectures in English
Distribution II: History and Tradition
920 MW 4:30 p.m. - 7:40 p.m. Todorov

This course draws on fictional, cinematic and mass-media representation of terrorism based on Russian as well as Western examples. We study how the magnitude of the political impact of terrorism relates to the historically changing means of production of its striking iconology. The course exposes students to major modes of imagining, narrating, showing, reenacting terrorism and forging its mystique. We examine the emergence of organized terrorism in the 19th century Russia as an original political-cultural phenomenon. We trace its rapid expansion and influence on the public life in the West, and on the Balkans. Historical, political, and aesthetic approaches converge in a discussion of several case studies related to intellectual and spiritual movements such as nihilism, anarchism, populism, religious fundamentalism, and others. The public appearance of the terrorist activism and its major attributes are viewed as powerful intensifiers of its political effect: self-denial, ascetic aura, and stratagem of mystification, underground mentality, and martyrdom.

The pedagogical goal of this course is to promote and cultivate critical view and analytical skills that will enable students to deal with different historical as well as cultural modes of (self)representation of terrorism. Students are expected to learn and be able to deal with a large body of historical-factual and creative-interpreted information.

Offered through Penn Language Center (Dates TBD)

SLAV109 Central Europe: Culture and Civilization (Penn-in-Prague)
950 Steiner
Distribution II: History and Tradition (Class of '09 and prior)
Permission needed from CGS Office

SLAV530 Elementary Czech I
950 Staff
Permission needed from CGS Office

SLAV532 Intermediate Czech I
950 TBA
Permission needed from CGS Office