Slavic Languages and 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.