The objective of a major in Russian is to provide a thorough foundation in the Russian language and develop a sophisticated understanding of the culture and history of Russia in its European and global contexts. To further an awareness of Russia's rich cultural tradition and the country's continuing role as a major player on the world stage, departmental courses are often interdisciplinary in approach, encouraging students to explore literature, film, politics, history, art, music, and cultural studies. Associated courses in a range of disciplines at the Claremont Colleges complement the department's offerings.
Goals in the Study of Russian Language and Culture
Majors should be able to:
- with the aid of a dictionary read and understand unadapted literary, journalistic, and colloquial Russian texts;
- converse with native speakers on a variety of non-technical topics;
- communicate in writing with native speakers;
- navigate the Russian Internet;
- function independently in a Russian-speaking environment;
- have a broad understanding of the people, movements and events that have shaped Russian cultural history;
- be familiar with representative works of Russian literature, fine arts, music, cinema, and architecture;
- acquire cultural competency understood as historical and political awareness, social sensibility, and aesthetic perception.
- Course assignments and written and oral examinations embedded in sequenced language courses;
- Same placement test is given to track Russian language progress at the end of Elementary Russian and Advanced Russian;
- Annual ACTR National Post-Secondary Russian Essay Contest (all of our students are required to participate);
- Study Abroad (providing an outside perspective for Russian language and culture evaluation); interview after Study Abroad;
- Russian Language Table.
Majors on the Russian Literature Track
- Senior Exercise option 1: Senior Exercise consisting of three parts:
a) Essay in English based on the course work in Russian literature and culture;
b) Essay in Russian to test the student's ability to read and analyze an original literary or critical text;
c) Oral exam to discuss the results of a) and b).
- Senior Exercise option 2: Senior Thesis
Russian Linguistics Track
Majors on the Russian and East European Studies:
- Senior Exercise option 1: Senior Thesis
• Senior Exercise option 2: A series of papers on some aspect of Russian and East European Studies