Slavic Languages and Literatures | Tolstoy and Dostoevsky
R334 | ALL | Perlina
The course attempts to cover, along with the history of Russian literature,
many of the most urgent issues in the intellectual and socio-political life
of the 19th century. The discussions will be focused on the three major
novels by Tolstoy and Dostoevsky (War and Peace, The Brothers Karamazov,
The Idiot.) and on the selections of their novellas.
Course description and course requirements:
Since most of the students are already familiar with Crime and Punishment
and Anna Karenina, the emphasis will be given to The Brothers Karamazov,War
and Piece and Dostoevsky's novel The Idiot. The novels provide artistic
representations to the thoughts which preoccupied Tolstoy and Dostoevsky
through their lives. The authors' shorter works will be projected upon the
background of these masterpieces. Except for two beginning sessions, the
course will combine lectures and discussions. All students are obliged to
participate in daily discussions.
Working for this course, each student is expected;
1. to present a 15 minute report and to develop this presentation in an
analytical study of a chosen topic (6-8 pp). Drafts for oral presentations
are to be consulted with the instructor a week before their presentations,
and the written texts submitted to the instructor a week after the oral
presentation.. The topics should be chosen from the works other than War and
Peace and The Brothers Karamazov.
2. to write a mid-term paper on either Tolstoy or Dostoevsky and to consider
the major questions raised either in The Brothers Karamazov or in War and
3. to produce a final paper focused on the most important themes of
Tolstoy's and Dostoevsky's writings.
Mid-term and final papers are expected to be about 10-12 pp. each.
Reading list (all books are available from IU Bookstore)
Great Short Works (NY: Harper & Row, 1968)
The House of the Dead (Penguin, 1985)
Crime and Punishment (NY: Norton)
The Idiot (Penguin or Norton)
The Brothers Karamazov (NY: Norton)
Great Short Works, ed. John Bayley (Penguin, 1967)
War and Peace (NY: Norton)
Anna Karenina (Norton or Bantam Books)