Students who want to achieve a high level of proficiency in the Russian language and study Russian literature in depth can pursue a minor in Russian language and literature. The program offers elementary through third-year language courses and a number of courses on 19th- and 20th-century Russian literature (in translation) on a wide variety of topics. Students are strongly encouraged to study abroad.

An independent minor, Russian language and literature is administered by International and Area Studies. Students undertaking this minor are encouraged to consider a major in Eurasian studies (through IAS), comparative literature or history, all of which can be pursued with a focus on Russia and the former Soviet Union.

Contact:Mikhail Palatnik
Phone:314-935-4558
Email:palatnik@wustl.edu
Website:http://ias.wustl.edu/russian

There is no major in Russian language and literature. Students interested in Russian are encouraged to consider a major in Eurasian studies, comparative literature or history, all of which can be pursued with a focus on Russia and the former Soviet Union.

The Minor in Russian Language and Literature

Total units required: 20 

Prerequisites:

Russ 101D Elementary Russian and Russ 102D Elementary Russian or the equivalent.

Requirements:

Russ 211DIntermediate Russian4
Russ 212DIntermediate Russian4
Russ 322DThird-Year Russian3
Russ 324DThird-Year Russian3
One 300- or 400-level course in Russian Literature3
One elective course chosen either from an advanced Russian language and culture course (Russian 404, 405, 431 or 432) or from a Russian subject course taught in such departments as history, music or political science3
Total units20

Regulations:

  • Students can earn up to 6 credits from a semester or summer study abroad program, with the approval of the Russian language and literature adviser.
  • All advanced units must be unique to the Russian language and literature minor (i.e., not counted toward any other major or minor).
  • Students must earn at least a B- in language courses in order to continue to the next level. They must also maintain at least a B- average in all courses taken to fulfill the minor requirements. Students who do not meet this requirement may either repeat the course(s) in question or earn at least a B- in an approved equivalent course or courses (either during the summer or in a study abroad program).

Additional Information

Study Abroad: Students are strongly encouraged to participate in a Washington University study abroad program in St. Petersburg, Russia. Semester options include both language and area studies programs. Although the summer program is language-focused only, there are programs available for students at any language level, including beginning. The university's programs in St. Petersburg are conducted under the auspices of the Council for International Educational Exchange (CIEE), the longest running such program in Russia. Financial aid may be available for these programs through both Washington University and CIEE.

Visit https://courses.wustl.edu to view semester offerings for L39 Russ.


L39 Russ 101D Elementary Russian

Interactive multimedia course designed to emphasize spoken language; includes the very latest video materials geared toward situations in contemporary post-Soviet Russian life. Also provides thorough understanding of fundamental grammar and develops reading and writing skills. Five class hours per week, plus an additional hour for conversation, review and testing.

Credit 5 units. A&S: LA A&S IQ: LCD, LS BU: HUM, IS


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L39 Russ 102D Elementary Russian

Continuation of 101D. Interactive multimedia course designed to emphasize spoken language; includes the very latest video materials geared toward situations in contemporary Russian life. Also provides thorough understanding of fundamental grammar and develops reading and writing skills. Five class hours per week, plus an additional hour for conversation, review and testing.

Credit 5 units. A&S: LA A&S IQ: LCD, LS BU: HUM, IS


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L39 Russ 211D Intermediate Russian

Designed to solidify students' command of Russian grammar and advance conversational, reading and writing skills. Includes video materials produced in Russia and conveying an up-to-the-minute picture of contemporary Russian life.

Credit 4 units. A&S: LA A&S IQ: LCD, LS BU: HUM, IS


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L39 Russ 212D Intermediate Russian

Continuation of 211D, completes comprehensive review of Russian grammar and further advances conversational, reading, writing and listening skills. Revised textbook with new audio and video materials that convey an up-to-the-minute picture of contemporary Russian life.

Credit 4 units. A&S: LA A&S IQ: LCD, LS BU: HUM, IS


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L39 Russ 215C Introduction to Russian Civilization

This course provides an overview of the main currents and developments in Russian culture and the arts from the earliest records to the present day. Exploring literary texts, film, music, architecture, the visual arts and popular culture, we discuss the self-identity of a people neither European nor Asian. Topics include the introduction of Orthodox Christianity, the "Tatar yoke," reactions to the "Europeanization" of Russia, Soviet propaganda and post-Soviet everyday life. Does the Russian Federation of today represent a complete break with the past or a reemergence of certain cultural constants? Knowledge of Russian language not required. Freshmen welcome.

Credit 3 units. A&S: TH, CD A&S IQ: HUM, LCD Art: HUM BU: HUM, IS


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L39 Russ 315 Selected Areas for Special Study I: Russian Music


Same as L27 Music 315

Credit 3 units. A&S: TH A&S IQ: HUM EN: H


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L39 Russ 322D Third-Year Russian

Designed to develop students' abilities in the contemporary spoken language. Conversational practice is combined with a review of grammatical concepts. Students also work with newspapers, read literary texts and write compositions. Prerequisite: Russ 212D or equivalent.

Credit 3 units. A&S: LA A&S IQ: LCD, LS BU: HUM, IS


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L39 Russ 324D Third-Year Russian

Designed to develop students' abilities in the contemporary spoken language. Conversational practice is combined with a review of grammatical concepts. Students also work with newspapers, read literary texts and write compositions. Prerequisite: Russ 322D or equivalent.

Credit 3 units. A&S: LA A&S IQ: LCD, LS BU: HUM, IS


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L39 Russ 350C The 19th-Century Russian Novel (WI)

The 19th-century "realistic" novel elevated Russian literature to world literary significance. In this course we do close readings of three major Russian novels: Alexander Pushkin's Eugene Onegin, Fyodor Dostoevsky's Crime and Punishment and Lev Tolstoy's Anna Karenina. While we consider a variety of formal and thematic concerns, special emphasis is placed on the social context and on questions of Russian cultural identity. Readings and discussions are supplemented by critical articles and film. This is a writing-intensive course: workshops are required. All readings are in English translation. No prerequisites.

Credit 3 units. A&S: TH, SD, WI A&S IQ: HUM, LCD, SD, WI Art: HUM BU: HUM


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L39 Russ 3559 Socialist and Secular? A Social History of the Soviet Union


Same as L22 History 3559

Credit 3 units. A&S: TH, CD, SD A&S IQ: HUM, LCD, SD BU: IS EN: H


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L39 Russ 356 20th-Century Russian History


Same as L22 History 356C

Credit 3 units. A&S: TH, CD A&S IQ: HUM, LCD Art: HUM BU: IS


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L39 Russ 3560 Russia and the West


Same as L93 IPH 3560

Credit 3 units. A&S: TH A&S IQ: HUM Art: HUM EN: H


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L39 Russ 363 Russian Literature and Opera: Transpositions and Transgressions


Same as L97 IAS 363

Credit 3 units. A&S: TH, CD A&S IQ: HUM, LCD EN: H


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L39 Russ 364 Anarchism: History, Theory, and Praxis


Same as L97 IAS 364

Credit 3 units. A&S: SS A&S IQ: SSC BU: BA EN: S


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L39 Russ 375 Topics in Russian Lit and Culture: Madmen or Visionaries? (WI)


Same as L97 IAS 3750

Credit 3 units. A&S: TH, CD, WI A&S IQ: HUM, LCD, WI BU: IS EN: H


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L39 Russ 379 Russians Abroad: Literature, Migration, Identity


Same as L97 IAS 379

Credit 3 units. A&S: TH, CD A&S IQ: HUM, LCD BU: IS EN: H


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L39 Russ 3880 The Russian Revolution: Writing-Intensive Seminar


Same as L22 History 38R8

Credit 3 units. A&S: TH, WI A&S IQ: HUM, WI BU: IS EN: H


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L39 Russ 396 Comintern: The Communist International's Global Impact


Same as L97 IAS 396

Credit 3 units. A&S: TH A&S IQ: HUM EN: H


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L39 Russ 404 Fourth-Year Russian

Further develops students' abilities in all spheres of the language: speaking, listening, reading, writing. Vocabulary building, conversation practice and student compositions based on materials from the Russian mass media, contemporary films and readings in modern Russian literature. Prerequisite: three years of college Russian or equivalent.

Credit 3 units. A&S: LA A&S IQ: LCD, LS


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L39 Russ 405 Fourth-Year Russian

Further develops students' abilities in all spheres of the language: speaking, listening, reading, writing. Vocabulary building, conversation practice and student compositions based on materials from the Russian mass media, contemporary films and readings in modern Russian literature. Prerequisite: three years of college Russian or equivalent.

Credit 3 units. A&S: LA A&S IQ: LCD, LS


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L39 Russ 431 Russia Today and Yesterday: Cultural Perspectives (in Russian)

On the basis of contemporary literature, official media, popular songs and films, the course examines the ever-changing culture of the Russian people and society during the pre- and post-perestroika periods. Class discussions, lectures and student presentations. Prerequisite: three years of college Russian or the equivalent.

Credit 3 units. A&S: LA A&S IQ: LCD, LS Art: HUM BU: IS


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L39 Russ 432 Russia Today and Yesterday (in Russian)

Readings of 19th- and 20th-century Russian writers, as well as other literary and non-literary texts. Refinement and expansion of Russian communication skills (speaking, listening, writing, reading). Class discussions, student presentations, compositions. Prerequisite: Russ 431 or the equivalent.

Credit 3 units. A&S: LA A&S IQ: LCD, LS Art: HUM


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L39 Russ 4442 The Jewish Experience in Eastern Europe


Same as L22 History 4442

Credit 3 units. A&S: TH, CD


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L39 Russ 448 Russian History to the 18th Century


Same as L22 History 448C

Credit 3 units. A&S: TH A&S IQ: HUM Art: HUM BU: HUM


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L39 Russ 4480 Russian Intellectual History


Same as L22 History 4480

Credit 3 units. A&S: TH A&S IQ: HUM BU: IS EN: H


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L39 Russ 449 Imperial Russia


Same as L22 History 449C

Credit 3 units. A&S: TH A&S IQ: HUM Art: HUM


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L39 Russ 4869 Reading War and Peace


Same as L97 IAS 4869

Credit 3 units. A&S: TH, CD, SD A&S IQ: HUM, LCD, SD EN: H


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Endowed Professors

Hillel Kieval
Gloria M. Goldstein Professor of Jewish History and Thought
PhD, Harvard University
(History; Jewish, Islamic and Near Eastern Languages and Cultures)

James V. Wertsch
David R. Francis Distinguished Professor
PhD, University of Chicago
(Anthropology; IAS)

Professor

Margit Tavits
PhD, University of Pittsburgh
(Political Science)

Associate Professor

Max J. Okenfuss
PhD, Harvard University
(History)

Assistant Professor

Anika Walke
PhD, University of California, Santa Cruz
(History)

Senior Lecturers

Mikhail Palatnik
MA equivalent, University of Chernovtsy
MA, Washington University

Nicole Svobodny
Assistant Dean, College of Arts & Sciences
PhD, Columbia University

Professor Emerita

Milica Banjanin
PhD, Washington University