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Course Descriptions

Russian Area Studies Course Listings - Spring 2013

Russian 112F:  Beginning Russian II
5 Credits
Zaharkov, Lila

Prerequisite:  Russian 111 or placement.
Continuation of 111, practice with conversation and grammatical patterns.  Ninety minutes per week of independent lab time required.

Russian 130A/C:  Modern Hero
4 Credits
Zaharkov, Lila

Prerequisite:  None, Taught in English
The “Modern Hero” in Russian culture begins with the fairy tale!  What traits distinguish them from our concept of the heroic or anti-heroic?  We’ll then proceed to the development of the Revolutionary hero who wants to singlehandedly change Russian society.  Join us in this course as we encounter the representation of the hero/ine to the present day and perhaps 600 years into the future!  While examining the “Modern Hero”, readers will be introduced to the best writers of 19th and 20th century Russian literature such as Gogol, Turgenev, Dostoevsky, Zamjatin, Bulgakov, and others.  No Russian is required!  All readings, lectures, and discussion in English.  Fulfills either the “A” Fine, Performing, and Literary Arts or “C” Non-Western Cultures General Education requirement.

HIST253C/H 1W:  Soviet Russia
4.00 credits
Raffensperger, Chris

Prerequisite:  None
Russia in this period is fully enmeshed in European and world history. Over the course of this class we will see Soviet troops in Berlin, as well Soviet activity throughout the world.  Russia also goes through a series of dramatic changes in this period from the amazing events of two revolutions in 1917 to the conservative reaction under Stalin, and repetitions of those cycles of reform and reaction throughout the twentieth century. The history of the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics will change the history of the rest of the world, and as such, is a vital component in understanding not only the events of the twentieth century, but our twenty-first century as well.
Writing Intensive

POLI 352 1W:  Russian Foreign Policy
4 credits
LaPorte, Jody

Prerequisite: POLI 102S or 251S and Jr/Sr Class Standing
This course surveys the international politics of post-Soviet Eurasia. We will examine the development and implementation of Russian foreign policy under Yeltsin, Putin, and Medvedev—including policy towards (1) the West, especially the U.S. and Western Europe; (2) Asia, with particular focus on China; (3) the Middle East during the Arab Spring.  We also will devote significant time to assessing political relations among the former Soviet republics—especially Russian policy towards the “near abroad,” oil and pipeline politics, and the “frozen conflicts” in the Caucasus.  Evaluation will be based on a combination of written assignments and active participation in class discussions.  10/12
Writing Intensive

2 Credits
Chris Raffensperger

Prerequisite:  Senior Standing or Permission of Instructor
This course is intended to be among the final classes that RCEP majors take.  It is thus reserved for senior majors, in most cases.  The class objective is intentionally to draw the linkages among the various disciplines taught in RCEP by having the student read a key book from each of them and then composing a final 15-page paper on a theme that links the readings.  If a student is able to do this successfully, then he/she will have fulfilled the requirement of passing the senior assessment for RCEP.

SOCI 301S 2W:  Politics and Religion, America and Worldwide
4 Credits
Pankhurst, Jerry

Pre-requisites:  One course in sociology or RCEP major/minor or permission of instructor
Religion seems to play an ever greater role in politics, and this process is occurring not only in the United States, but in many other countries around the world, as well as on the global stage.  This course examines the process of expanding political religion or religious politics sociologically, arguing that there is a special inter-institutional relationship between politics and religion that is developing under globalized post-modern conditions.  The relationship between politics and religion varies among national settings depending upon the historical-cultural attachment to differing major religious traditions.  We will put several societies and their faith traditions into focus, and we will also investigate the impact of transnational organizations and legal structures such as the United Nations, the Council of Europe, the European Union and the Arab League.  This offering of the course will emphasize dynamics in North America, Europe, Central Eurasia and the Middle East, that is, primarily Abrahamic (Judaic, Christian and Muslim) societies.  This course builds on the instructor’s experience teaching and carrying out research in Estonia in the spring of 2012, and includes some components that will be carried on jointly with a class at the University of Tartu by Internet bridge.

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