Graduate Courses

Fall 2021

RUS 549 
Russian for Academic Purposes I

This course focuses instruction on skills required to perform in a Russian-speaking academic context across core subject areas of literary analysis and cultural studies. The targeted language skills - reading, writing, speaking, and listening - will be tied with the specific needs of students (e.g., reading and writing proposals, presentations for conferences, academic articles, and correspondence). In addition, students get acquainted with various academic sub-styles and genres as well as differences in academic standards (citation, bibliography). The course includes a comprehensive review of Russian grammar and syntax.


SLA 509/COM 505 
Photographic Modernisms: Russia and the West 

This course traces the history of the photographic medium from the introduction of the daguerreotype in 1839 to socially engaged documentary photography of the 1930s and beyond, questioning the notion of photography as a modernist artistic and documentary medium in Russia and the West. Central issues in the course are the role of authorship in photography and in the hybrid photo-textual spaces of print media, photography's politicization and instrumentation, and photography as a reflection of a shifting modernist vision.


SLA 510/COM 507 
History of Emotions: Russia and the West

Do feelings have history? How do they influence history? Do "natural" emotions exist? How do political regimes control the emotional sincerity of their subjects? What is the role of literature in cultivating certain emotional modes? How do people interpret and express their emotions in different periods? In this course, we apply these and similar questions to the emotional history of Russian culture considered within western contexts and theoretical frameworks offered by scholars of emotions. We also try to "resurrect" a number of emotions which played an important role in Russian cultural history.

SLA 518 
Major Russian Poets and Poetic Movements: Post-Symbolist Poets

This seminar is devoted to major writings of Russian poets during the post-Symbolist period up to the Stalinist era. Close readings of selected poetry and prose of Acmeists Akhmatova and Mandel'shtam, Cubo-Futurists Mayakovsky and Khlebnikov, and the unaligned Tsvetaeva and Pasternak serve as points of departure to discuss hallmarks of Russian modernism and issues relating to emigration, art and politics, gender, and the negotiation of novelty and tradition. The art of self-presentation and the act of reading - how they both shape and are shaped by the texts and their authors - is considered over the course of the entire semester.

SLA 535 
Methods of Teaching Russian

A practical course required of graduate students who are teaching beginning Russian. The course covers all issues relevant to the teaching of the language: phonetics, grammar presentation, efficient use of class time, class and syllabus planning, writing quizzes and tests. In addition to weekly meetings with the instructors, students are expected to meet as a group to develop best practices for covering each week's material. An important part of the course is instructor supervision of teaching.