RUSSIAN 499 - Advanced Seminar in Russian
Section: 001 Culture and the Provinces
Term: WN 2009
Subject: Russian (RUSSIAN)
Department: LSA Slavic Languages & Literatures
Waitlist Capacity:
Advisory Prerequisites:
RUSSIAN 302 or 303, and 351.
Other Course Info:
Taught in Russian.
May not be repeated for credit.
Primary Instructor:

In Russia the “provinces” begin at the edges of Moscow and St Petersburg – everything beyond the two “capitals” is “provincial” in the world’s largest country. Thus the vast majority of Russians live in the “provinces”, although the country’s culture (as its economy and politics) is dominated by the two capitals. The geographical extent of Russia, the inaccessibility of even major centers of population, a very centralized institutional structure, obvious economic imbalances, and many other factors go into sustaining the sense that “provincial” Russia is remote, backward, and homogeneous. At the same time, opposite claims are often heard: that here is the “real” Russia, uncontaminated by non-native influences, unchanged by time, pure, and beautiful – a model from which the capitals have deviated to their own detriment.

This course will examine a series of images of the “provincial” in nineteenth, twentieth-, and twenty-first century Russian culture, using assignments not only from fiction, poetry, and travel narratives, but also from beyond the realm of belles lettres (for example, the course will also look at cinema and the pictorial arts, and will make extensive use of the Internet). The course will also require students to address such practical issues as travel, communications, and administration within and across provincial Russia.

In a series of course modules we will explore how the Russian provinces have been imagined, presented, and distorted by those who inhabit them, by those who mythologize them, by those who dread them, and by those who love them.

Three short papers, a final in-class presentation, and a term paper.

RUSSIAN 499 - Advanced Seminar in Russian
Schedule Listing
001 (REC)
MW 10:00AM - 11:30AM
Note: Russia Between East & West
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