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SLAVIC 70N: Socialism vs. Capitalism: Russian and American Writers' Responses

The turn of the 20th century was marked with turbulent political events and heated discussions about the future of Russian and American societies. Many writers and intellectuals responded to the burning issues of social justice, inequality, egalitarianism, and exploitation associated with capitalism and socialism. Through close reading, critical thinking, and analytical writing, we will engage in the critical discussions of class struggle, individual interest versus collective values, race, and social equality, and identify points of convergence and divergence between the two systems. To what extent was the opposition between capitalism and socialism fueled by the artistic vision of the great Russian and American writers? What were these thinkers' ideal of society and what impact did it have on shaping emerging socialism? Readings for the class include the fundamental works of Fyodor Dostoevsky, Leo Tolstoy, Jack London, W.E.B. Du Bois and Sholem Aleichem. As a field trip, we will visit Jack London State Historic Park in the Northern California. The course will culminate in a digital mapping project visualizing intellectual connections between ideas and writers.
Terms: Spr | Units: 3-4 | UG Reqs: WAY-A-II, WAY-SI | Grading: Letter or Credit/No Credit
Instructors: Ilchuk, Y. (PI)

SLAVIC 77Q: Russia's Weird Classic: Nikolai Gogol

Preference to sophomores. An investigation of the works and life of Nikolai Gogol, the most eccentric of Russian authors and the founder of what is dubbed Fantastic Realism. Our investigation will be based on close reading of works written in various genres and created in various stages of Gogol's literary career. Taught in English.
Terms: Aut | Units: 3-4 | UG Reqs: GER:DB-Hum, WAY-A-II | Grading: Letter (ABCD/NP)

SLAVIC 103: The Putin Phenomenon: Culture and Politics in Recent Russian History (COMPLIT 103)

A man who likes to ride horses shirtless. An autocrat who has shaped contemporary Russia and won't let go of the reins. A conniver who interferes in international democratic processes toward his own nefarious ends.nMore than a politician or an individual, "Putin" has become a catch-all that stands in for Russia as a whole. In this course, we'll attempt to separate the man from the myth and to understand the historical and cultural context behind Putin's policies. In the process, we will strive better to grasp contemporary Russian society as a complex and culturally rich environment, not just an oppressed land under the thumb of one man.nIn the course of our analysis, we will examine literary and cultural artifacts and expressive works that engage with political, social, and universal human problems in a Russian and post-Soviet context, interpreting and critiquing those cultural objects with an eye to aesthetic methods and qualities and also how they reflect historical and cultural elem more »
A man who likes to ride horses shirtless. An autocrat who has shaped contemporary Russia and won't let go of the reins. A conniver who interferes in international democratic processes toward his own nefarious ends.nMore than a politician or an individual, "Putin" has become a catch-all that stands in for Russia as a whole. In this course, we'll attempt to separate the man from the myth and to understand the historical and cultural context behind Putin's policies. In the process, we will strive better to grasp contemporary Russian society as a complex and culturally rich environment, not just an oppressed land under the thumb of one man.nIn the course of our analysis, we will examine literary and cultural artifacts and expressive works that engage with political, social, and universal human problems in a Russian and post-Soviet context, interpreting and critiquing those cultural objects with an eye to aesthetic methods and qualities and also how they reflect historical and cultural elements of Russia over a 25-year period. Cultural products to be addressed include literature and film (and one graphic novel) from the Perestroika period through the present day. We will also read President Putin's autobiography, First Person, and several of his speeches, using techniques of literary analysis to parse the particular story about Russia that he aims to convey to Russians. By examining and exploring a range of cultural objects from Russia's recent history, we seek to understand the forces that contributed to social and political change over those years, the effect those changes had on ordinary (and extraordinary) Russians, and how those effects take on meaningful aesthetic form through creative expression.
Terms: Win | Units: 3-5 | UG Reqs: WAY-A-II, WAY-SI | Grading: Letter or Credit/No Credit

SLAVIC 113: LGBTQ in Russia: A Legal History (REES 214, SLAVIC 213)

Russian politicians who support the country's law against so-called "gay propaganda" have repeatedly defended the restriction of LGBTQ rights. They claim that sexual minorities are antonymous to Russian "traditional values"', and some have even suggested that homosexuality should be re-criminalized altogether. This course explores the place of sexual minorities within Russian "tradition" by tracing laws regulating sex from the medieval period to the present day.
Terms: Aut | Units: 3-5 | UG Reqs: WAY-A-II, WAY-SI | Grading: Letter or Credit/No Credit
Instructors: Mayhew, N. (PI)

SLAVIC 118N: Other People's Words: Folklore and Literature

What happens when you collect and use other people's words? This class considers folklore and literature based on it, focusing on the theme of objects that come to life and threaten their makers or owners (including Russian fairy tales and Nikolai Gogol's stories, the Golem legend and Michael Chabon's Amazing Adventures of Kavalier and Clay, and Ovid's and Shaw's Pygmalion). We read essays by Jacob Grimm, Roman Jakobson, and others, to understand what folklore can mean and how the oral and the written can interact. Students collect living folklore from a group of their choosing. This course fulfills the second-level Writing and Rhetoric Requirement (Write-2) and emphasizes oral and multimedia presentation.Prerequisite: PWR 1
Terms: Spr | Units: 4 | UG Reqs: WAY-A-II, Writing 2 | Grading: Letter (ABCD/NP)
Instructors: Safran, G. (PI)

SLAVIC 121: Ukraine at a Crossroads (SLAVIC 221)

Literally meaning "borderland," Ukraine has embodied in-betweenness in all possible ways. What is the mission of Ukraine in Europe and in Eurasia? How can Ukraine become an agent of democracy, stability, and unity? What does Ukraine's case of multiple identities and loyalties offer to our understanding of the global crisis of national identity? In this course, we will consider the historical permeability of Ukraine's territorial, cultural, and ethnic borders as an opportunity to explore the multiple dimensions of its relations with its neighbors. In addition to studying historical and literary, and cinematic texts, we discuss nationalism, global capitalism, memory politics, and propaganda in order to understand post-Euromaidan society. All required texts are in English. No knowledge of Ukrainian is required. NOTE: This course must be taken for a minimum of 3 units and a letter grade to be eligible for Ways credit.
Terms: Aut | Units: 1-5 | UG Reqs: WAY-A-II, WAY-SI | Grading: Letter or Credit/No Credit

SLAVIC 145: Survey of Russian Literature: The Age of Experiment (SLAVIC 345)

This course discusses the transition from predominantly poetic to predominantly prosaic creativity in the Russian literature of the first half of the 19th century Russian literature and the birth of the great Russian novel. It covers three major Russian writers “-- Alexander Pushkin, Mikhail Lermontov and Nikolai Gogol -- and examines the changes in the Russian literary scene affected by their work. An emphasis is placed on close reading of literary texts and analysis of literary techniques employed in them. Taught in English. NOTE: To be eligible for WAYS credit, you must take SLAVIC 145 for a minimum of 3 Units and a Letter Grade.
Terms: Aut | Units: 1-5 | UG Reqs: WAY-A-II | Grading: Letter (ABCD/NP)

SLAVIC 146: The Great Russian Novel: Tolstoy and Dostoevsky (SLAVIC 346)

In this seminar, we will study the development of the 19th-century Russian novel through the close reading and broad cultural examination of three masterpieces: Ivan Goncharov's Oblomov (1859), Fyodor Dostoevsky's Crime and Punishment (1866), and Leo Tolstoy's Anna Karenina (1877). Through the analysis of the novels and their context, we will define the aesthetic contours of the Russian realist novel. We will pay special attention to the questions of genre, narration, discourse, medium, and intermediality. Note: To be eligible for WAYS/WIM credit, you must take SLAVIC 146 for a minimum of 3 Units and a Letter Grade.
Terms: Win | Units: 1-5 | UG Reqs: GER:DB-Hum, GER:EC-GlobalCom, WAY-A-II | Grading: Letter or Credit/No Credit

SLAVIC 147: Modern Russian Literature and Culture: The Age of War and Revolution (SLAVIC 347)

The Age of Revolution: Readings in Russian Modernist Prose of the 1920-30s: What makes Russian modernist prose special? Or is there anything special about Russian modernist prose? This course aims to answer these questions through close readings of works by Babel, Mandelstam, Zoshchenko, Platonov, Olesha and Bulgakov. Aesthetic issues such as hero, plot, and narrative devices will be addressed with the aid of contemporaneous literary theory (Shklovsky, Tynianov, Eikhenbaum, Bakhtin). Novels and theory will be read in English. NOTE: This course must be taken for a minimum of 3 units and a letter grade to be eligible for Ways credit.
Terms: Spr | Units: 1-5 | UG Reqs: GER:DB-Hum, GER:EC-GlobalCom, WAY-A-II | Grading: Letter or Credit/No Credit

SLAVIC 181: Philosophy and Literature (CLASSICS 42, COMPLIT 181, ENGLISH 81, FRENCH 181, GERMAN 181, ITALIAN 181, PHIL 81)

What, if anything, does reading literature do for our lives? What can literature offer that other forms of writing cannot? Can fictions teach us anything? Can they make people more moral? Why do we take pleasure in tragic stories? This course introduces students to major problems at the intersection of philosophy and literature. It addresses key questions about the value of literature, philosophical puzzles about the nature of fiction and literary language, and ways that philosophy and literature interact. Readings span literature, film, and philosophical theories of art. Authors may include Sophocles, Dickinson, Toni Morrison, Proust, Woolf, Walton, Nietzsche, and Sartre. Students master close reading techniques and philosophical analysis, and write papers combining the two. This is the required gateway course for the Philosophy and Literature major tracks. Majors should register in their home department.
Terms: Aut | Units: 3-5 | UG Reqs: GER:DB-Hum, WAY-A-II | Grading: Letter or Credit/No Credit
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