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Language Courses

 

Elementary Russian I
01:860:101:01
Cori Anderson
MTTh3 11:30-12:50, AB 3100

Elementary Russian I
01:860:101:02
MTTh6  4:30-5:50, SC115

Open only to students with NO prior knowledge of Russian. Students with prior knowledge must take a placement test.

Elementary Russian is an intensive introductory course in spoken and written contemporary standard Russian, intended for students with no prior experience in the language. It develops proficiency in all four skills: speaking, reading, listening, and writing, as well as the basics of Russian grammar. It also introduces students to Russian life, culture, history, geography, and traditions through authentic target-language texts, websites, various media, and other supplementary materials. It is highly recommended that all 860:101 also take First Year Russian Language Lab.

 

First Year Russian Language Lab
01:860:103:01
Cori Anderson

W5 2:50-4:10pm, Language Lab 119

Using the audiovisual and digital capabilities of the Language Lab on College Avenue, the course helps students improve their pronunciation, intonation, listening, and conversation skills in standard Russian. Students will learn to use a Russian keyboard and to navigate Russian language websites. Other materials include authentic Russian print media and audio-visual materials, such as film clips and cartoons. Only open to students who are currently enrolled in Russian 101.

 

Intermediate Russian I
01:860:201:01

MTTh3 11:30am-12:50pm, SC 220

Prerequisite: 01:860:102 or placement. Not for students who have taken 01:860:107.

Intermediate Russian is an intensive intermediate course in spoken and written contemporary standard Russian, intended for students who have completed Russian 102 or placed into the course by exam. This course is not for students who have completed Russian 107 or those who speak Russian at home with their family. The course develops proficiency in all four skills: speaking, reading, listening, and writing. It includes a review and expansion of Russian grammar and vocabulary. It deepens students’ understanding of Russian life, culture, history, geography, and traditions through authentic target-language texts, websites, media (including films and music) and other supplementary materials. It is highly recommended that all 860:201 students also take Second Year Russian Language Lab.

 

Second Year Russian Language Lab
01:860:203:01

M6 4:30-5:50pm, Language Lab 119

Using the audiovisual and digital capabilties of the Language Lab on College Avenue, the course continues helping students improve pronunciation, intonation, listening, and conversation skills in standard Russian. Students will master use of a Russian keyboard and to navigate Russian language websites. Other materials include authentic Russian print media and audio-visual materials, such as television clips and cartoons. Only open to students who are currently enrolled in Russian 201 or 207.

 

Elementary Russian for Russian Speakers
01:860:207:01
Svetlana Bogomolny
MTTh5 2:50-4:10pm, Scott Hall 207

Prerequisite: Placement. Credit not given for both this course and 860:201.

Second Year Russian for Russian Speakers is intended for students who learned to speak Russian in the home or from family members, with little or no formal study or experience with reading or writing Russian. Students will master reading and writing in the Russian alphabet, solidify their knowledge of Russian grammar, including case endings and verbal forms, and increase their vocabulary. This course also introduces students to Russian culture, literature and history through authentic target-language texts, websites and media (including films and music) and other supplementary materials.

 

Advanced Russian I
01:860:301:01
Cori Anderson
TTh5 2:50-4:10, SC 220

Prerequisite: 860:202, 860:208, or placement.

This is an advanced course in spoken and written contemporary standard Russian, intended for students who have completed the equivalent of four semesters of college-level Russian, or have placed into the course by exam. The course strengthens grammatical control and develops proficiency in speaking, reading, listening, and writing. Students will learn to summarize, develop narration, and create connected paragraphs in speech and writing. The will also study complex grammatical structures, such as participles and gerunds, and syntactic constructions, such as subordination. They will broaden their vocabulary through the study of word-formation. This course covers many elements of modern Russian life, such as education, employment, leisure and youth culture, through authentic target-language texts, websites, media (including films and music) and other materials.

 

Contemporary Russian Culture: from Perestroika to the Present
01:860:403

Cori Anderson

TTh6  4:30-5:50,   MU114

Prerequisite: 01:860:302, or 01:860:306, or placement.

May be taken out of sequence with 860: 401, 860:402, or 860:404.

 

Taught primarily in Russian, the course fosters advanced language skills of conversational fluency, listening comprehension, writing and composition, expanded vocabulary, recognition of stylistic registers, and advanced syntax. These skills are practiced while exploring the changing contemporary culture of Russia through the economic structure, the family structure, domestic politics, foreign policy, and recollections of Perestroika (political reforms of the 1980s). Students will read literary and non-literary texts on these topics, alongside contemporary films and television programs.

Literature Courses

Russian Literature and Revolution
01:860:260:01
Emily Van Buskirk

MW4  1:10 -2:30  CA-A3

In English. No prerequisites.
This course fulfills a requirement for the Russian major and the minor in Russian Literature. Russia’s twentieth-century was punctuated by revolutions that brought radical transformations in culture, politics, and society to this vast country (and beyond). A tsarist autocracy became a communist, totalitarian state, whose eventual disintegration left behind a fragile, capitalist democracy. In this course we study how Russian literature reflects the ways in which individual experiences and identities were shaped by dramatic (and often catastrophic) experiences such as revolution, collectivization, industrialization, war, terror, and the prison camp system. We focus on the artistic movements that surround the October Revolution of 1917, and the subsequent literature that was suppressed, muted, or twisted by Stalinist policies. We also read works from the "thaw" period (after Stalin's death), the perestroika era (1985-1991), and the early post-Communist years. We study masterful novels (by Bulgakov, Nabokov, Zamyatin, Pelevin, and Petrushevskaya), poems (by Blok, Mayakovsky, and Akhmatova), short stories, and film. We place these works in the context of Russian (Soviet) culture and history. Fulfills SAS core goal AHp.

 

Dostoevsky
01:860:330:01
Chloë Kitzinger                       

MW5    2:50-4:10  MU213
In English. No prerequisites.

The Russian novelist Fyodor Dostoevsky (1821-1881) explored the human mind and soul through some of the most vivid and tenacious characters in world literature: murderers, madmen, children, terrorists, atheists, and prostitutes, brothers and sisters, gamblers and saints. Many of his eerily modern ethical, psychological, and political insights stemmed from his fear of a world without God: a condition that he rejected on moral grounds, but which he could not help compellingly representing in his fiction. This course traces Dostoevsky’s career as a literary celebrity, political prisoner, traveler, journalist, religious and nationalist thinker, and especially, as a novelist who pushed the genre to its outermost formal and philosophical bounds. We’ll focus most closely on his three gripping 1860s masterpieces: Notes from the Underground, Crime and Punishment, and The IdiotFulfills SAS core goals AH o, p.

 

Art and Power
01:860:336:01
Cross-listed with Art History 01:082:357:01 and Comparative Literature 01:195:316:01
Alla Rosenfeld
TTh5   2:50-4:10pm, ZAM EDR

In English. No prerequisites.

Russian art of the Soviet era affords a unique vantage point from which to explore the intersection of art and politics, the changing dymanics of Soviet power, and artists' responses to—and reactions against—the notion of art as an instrument of political propaganda. Art and Power addresses the interplay between changing cultural policy and the shifts in the styles, imagery, and content of Russian/Soviet art during this period. The course covers a broad spectrum of artistic media, including painting, sculpture, posters, children's book design, architecture, mass festivals, theater, and film. Other topics include the cult of personality, art-world debates on realism versus abstraction, and developments like Lenin's Plan for Monumental Propaganda. The course also explores the movement known as "unofficial art" or "nonconformist art," which encompassed a wide range of forms of artistic expression of the mid-1950s–1980s that developed in opposition to Socialist Realism, the official style of Soviet art from the mid-1930s on. Students will be expected to explore the Riabov Collection of Russian art at the Norton and Nancy Dodge Collection of Nonconformist Art from the Soviet Union; some classes may be taught in the galleries of the Zimmerli Art Museum.

 

Russian, Soviet, and Post-Soviet Film
01:860:337:01                       

M6    4:30-5:50 AB 2100

W6   4:30-5:50 SC 206
In English. No prerequisites.

This course surveys the impressive body of Russian and Soviet cinema, from its pre-Revolutionary roots to its contemporary circumstances. We will watch and analyze the films of Sergei Eisenstein, Dziga Vertov, Andrei Tarkovsky, and a variety of other directors from Russia and various former Soviet republics, including Ukraine, Georgia, and Armenia. This course will engage recurrent thematic concerns of Russian cinema (inter/nationalism, gender and sexuality, the aesthetics of violence) alongside formal ones (the development of montage, the advent of sound film, non-narrative cinema techniques). It will serve as an introduction to both cinema studies and Russian studies.

Nabokov
01:860:340:01
Cross-listed with Comparative Literature (195:357:01)
Chloë Kitzinger

TTh6  4:30 – 5:50   MU210

In English. No prerequisites.

This course explores the world and works of the Russian and American writer Vladimir Nabokov (1899-1977). As Nabokov taught his students, “great novels are great fairy tales.” We will read his novels with an eye to the spells they cast and how they cast them. Beginning with Nabokov’s Russian-language Berlin period (short stories and one novel, The Luzhin Defense), we’ll go on to a selection of his major English-language novels: Lolita, Pnin, and Pale Fire. We will also read Nabokov’s luminous autobiography, Speak, Memory. Throughout these works, we will trace the threads of a few defining themes: the breathtaking deceptions of nature and of art; the games of poetry, narrative, and chess; aesthetic freedom preserved in the face of tyranny (political and otherwise). What is love, and how does perversion help explain it? What does it mean to be exiled from your home, country, language, or past? How should we read literature, and what can ways of reading tell us in turn about the way we should live? All readings and discussions in English.

 

Tolstoy's War and Peace
01:860:489:01
Edyta Bojanowska

TTh4   1:10-2:30, SC 202
In English. No prerequisites.

This course is a semester-long study of one big Russian novel — Leo Tolstoy's masterpiece War and Peace (1865-1869), about Napoleon's failed 1812 campaign against Russia. War and Peace is a sweeping panorama of nineteenth-century Russian society, a novel of profound philosophical questions, and an unforgettable gallery of artfully drawn characters. Reading the novel closely, we will pose the following questions: How does a novel intended to send a pacifist message become a patriotic war epic? In what ways is it a national and an imperial novel? What myths does it destroy and construct? What is the relation of story to history? What forces drive history, as it unfolds in the present? To what extent do individuals control their own lives and, if they're emperors and generals, the lives of nations? Finally, a question that is never too broad for Tolstoy: how does one live a meaningful live as a private person and as a member of a society? We will explore these and other dimensions of this capacious and intricate novel while refining our tools of literary analysis and situating the novel in its historical context. Secondary materials will include Tolstoy's letters, contemporary reviews, maps, historical sources, political theory, and literary criticism. Fulfills SAS core goal WCd. 

 

787 - Polish Courses

Elementary Polish I
01:787:101:01
Wanda Mandecki
MTTh4 1:10-2:30pm, AB 2150

Open to students with NO prior knowledge of Polish. Students with prior knowledge must take a placement test.

Elementary Polish is an introductory course intended for students with no or minimal prior experience in the language. Students will learn the Polish sound and spelling system. They will develop proficiency in listening, reading, speaking, and writing. The basic of grammar and core vocabulary are introduced.  In addition, the course provides an introduction to Polish culture, including geography, history, literature and practices through authentic texts, maps, websites and other supplementary materials. 

 

Intermediate Polish I
01:787:201:01
Wanda Mandecki
MTTh5 2:50-4:10pm, AB 2250

Prerequisite: 787:102 or placement.

Intermediate Polish is intended for students who have completed Elementary Polish or have placed into the course. Students will continue to develop proficiency in four skills: listening, reading, speaking, and writing. Orthography drills reinforce the sound and spelling system. This course will broaden students’ grammatical understanding and vocabulary. Students will read an authentic literary text, view a Polish film, and discuss current events in Poland, which will deepen students' knowledge of Polish history and culture.

 

Contemporary Polish Literature

01:787:250:01

Edyta Bojanowska

MTh3  11:30-12:50,  SC 104

In English. No prerequisites.

From the brilliant poetry of Nobel Prize winners to the rebellious prose of the youngest generation, Polish literature has produced some of the most original and influential writing to emerge from Central Europe.  This survey course will focus on the last half century of Polish writing spanning poetry, prose, and drama.  How do writers negotiate Polish identity and its relation to Europe?  How have they reacted to the historical traumas of World War II, the Holocaust, and the redrawing of post-war Poland’s boundaries?  How have they captured the indignities, unfreedoms, and absurdities of life under Poland’s communist regime?  Or the social and economic upheavals caused by the fall of communism?  We will also trace recent explorations of non-traditional sexual identities and imaginary reconstructions of Poland’s lost ethnic “others,” such as the Jews and the Germans.  Fulfills SAS core goal AHp.

 

Advanced Polish I
01:787:301:01
MWF 1:30-2:30pm 
Offered through CourseShare

Prerequisite: 787:202 or placement.

 

 

 

967 - Ukrainian Courses

Elementary Ukrainian
01:967:101:01
Maria Rewakowicz

MT6 4:30pm-5:50pm, SC 214

Th6 4:30pm-5:50pm, AB 4050

This is an introductory course in spoken and written standard Ukrainian, intended for students with minimal or no prior experience with the language. It is designed to develop proficiency in all four language skills: speaking, reading, listening, and writing, as well as to facilitate the acquisition of core vocabulary and the basics of Ukrainian grammar. For heritage learners special attention will be paid to mastering reading and writing in the Ukrainian alphabet. Students will also learn about Ukrainian life and culture through various supplementary materials, including authentic target-language texts, websites, and various media. No prerequisites.

Contact Us

Academic Building

Academic Building 
15 Seminary Pl.
4th Floor
New Brunswick, NJ 08901

p  848-932-7781
f   732-932-7125
elizabeth.dewolfe@rutgers.edu