(in Polish) „Russia Between East and West: Understanding Russians with a help of reportage” 3700-KON349-AL
Russia is an important player in today’s world. There is an increasing need for expertise in Russian culture, politics, and society in a variety of fields, in both national and international arenas. At the same time, there is lack of understanding of what Russia really is today and what Russians are like? Where is this country on the line between East and West? How to interpret the changes that took place after the break-up of the Soviet Union? We will explore the myth of the “Great Patriotic War”, as well as phenomenon of Stalin’s unbreakable popularity in today’s Russia. We will also discuss the change of the soviet stance, the notion of homo sovieticus and its applicability today. We will discuss the role of political and intellectual elites in the crucial moments of Russian History and the rise of oligarchs. During the course we will also elaborate on the current state of the Russian society: public mood, protests, conformism, attitude to the powerful, propaganda effectiveness.
Students will have a chance to work on their own by conducting their own research on Russia in different displays of literature, fine arts, architecture, film or any other field depending on their interests.
Type of course
- broad overview of the basic principles governing the past, the present and the future of Russia with a focus on the culture and national psychology of Russians vis-à-vis Western Europeans
- acquaintance with the key texts on today’s
- ability to analyze the discourse on the discussed issue and present student’s own opinion.
Final grade depends on:
- Presence on the lectures
- Activity during the lectures
- Written assignments
- Final paper
Aleksandr Radishchev “Journey from St. Petersburg to Moscow”
Marquis de Custine “Letters from Russia”
Boris Pasternak “Doctor Zhyvago”
Varlam Shalamov „Kolyma Tales”.
Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn „The Gulag Archipelago”
Svetlana Alekxievich „Secondhand Time: The Last of the Soviets
Svetlana Alekxievich „Zinky Boys: Soviet Voices from the Afghanistan War”
Ryszard Kapuściński „Imperium”
Tiziano Terzani „Goodnight, Mister Lenin”.
Jacek Hugo-Bader „White Fever: A Journey to the Frozen Heart of Siberia”
Peter Pomerantsev „Nothing Is True and Everything Is Possible: The Surreal Heart of the New Russia”
Additional information (registration calendar, class conductors, localization and schedules of classes), might be available in the USOSweb system: