Slavic Languages & Literatures | Readings in Russian Literature 2
R406 | ALL | Kolodziej


Given limitations of time and desirability of representative sampling,
selection of material is reflected almost exclusively to the major practi-
tioners of the Russian short story (Bunin, Gorky, Zoshchenko, Ilf and
Petrov, Olesha, Zamyatin, Babel,l Bulgakov, Nabokov, Aksenov, Solzhenitsyn).
For variety (linguistic and cultural), R406 includes a moviescript and
video. Occasional videos on major writers are shown and discussed and, if
there is student interest, a few poems are read and analyzed (Blok
Akhmatova, Mandelshtam, Voznesensky, Evtushenko). Class is conducted in
Russian. R406 begins with a brief introduction to Russian literary
terminology. Two short critical articles are read to expose students to the
terminology of Russian literary criticism. Whenever possible, dual language
texts (facing- page) are provided as a time saving device. The focus in the
course is not on translation, but on literary anaylsis and self-expression.
To this end, students are asked throughout the course to retell short
stories in class and to write out a brief summary of reading assignments. At
the end of each reading selection students write a composition about the
theme. Towards the end of the course, as students gain in proficiency,
retelling is deemphasized in favor of broader ranging discussion and the
writing of summaries is abandoned entirely. On the other hand, in the second
part of the course students are asked to give two brief oral reports. The
audience is encouraged to ask questions. The goals of the course are to
develop a keener awareness of literary texts, to develop the ability to
organize verbal material, and to increase self- expression in Russian.
Grades are based entirely on class participation (30%), oral reports (20%),
written summaries (25%) and themes (25%). If it becomes necessary, the
teacher reserves the right to give translation quizzes and questions on the
assigned text.