Major in Russian Language and Literature (1136)
The major in Russian Language & Literature expects students to attain proficiency in speaking, reading, writing, and listening comprehension in Russian; it trains them to work with primary sources in Russian and to navigate challenging real-life situations. The Russian major works well on its own or as a double major with other disciplines, such as International Relations, History, English, Comparative Literature, European Studies, and Political Science.
Like all WLL majors, Russian Language & Literature majors begin with XL100 Leaving Home: Explorations in World Literature, a team-taught course in which students meet the WLL faculty through guest lectures and get oriented in the rich diversity of the world’s literary traditions. They begin Russian language study as early as possible and complete at least two language courses beyond the fifth-semester level (LR 303). Classics of Russian Prose (LR 250) introduces students to major texts in English translation and can be taken early on in the student’s program. Four additional courses in Russian language, literature, and/or culture provide greater depth in areas of special interest to the student. One elective chosen among all WLL courses on languages, literatures, and cultures other than Russian enhances understanding of Russia’s place in the world through regional, global and/or historical comparison. Students wishing to explore more of WLL’s course offerings outside of Russia may substitute an additional elective for one of their four courses in Russian language, literature, or culture. Finally, Russian majors reconvene with all WLL majors in the senior capstone seminar XL 479, where they work with a faculty mentor on a final project using Russian-language materials.
Major in Russian Language & Literature Course Requirements
A total of 11 four-credit courses is required, all completed with a grade of C or higher.
- XL 100 Explorations in World Literature: Leaving Home
- LR 250 Classics of Russian Prose
- 3 advanced Russian language courses above LR 212.
- LR 303 Third Year Russian I
- LR 304 Third-Year II
- LR 440 Russian Theater
- LR 441 Contemporary Russian Press
- LR 442 Russian Media
- LR 443 Contemporary Russian Culture
- LR 445 Russian in Boston: Advanced Experimental Russian
- LR 350 Short Russian Prose
- LR 351 Russian Poetry
- 4 courses in Russian language, literature, and/or culture above LR 250. With advisor approval, up to 3 of these may be Russian studies courses taken outside the WLL department, e.g., in history, art history, Pardee, or PO. Courses taken at study abroad programs may also fulfill these requirements.
- 1 WLL elective, chosen with approval of the advisor. Chosen from all courses in WLL. May also be satisfied by taking both CAS CC 101 and CAS CC 102, by LX 250 Introduction to Linguistics or a higher-level linguistics course, or by a literature course in Romance Studies, English, or Classics. Students wishing to do more comparative work may count an additional WLL elective in place of one of the four courses in Russian language, literature and/or culture.
- Capstone XL 479 WLL Senior Seminar: Seniors majoring in WLL come back together in XL 479, the senior capstone Students use this course to produce a substantial project in their major and share their work with other WLL seniors working in other languages. The course provides students with structure and research guidance for developing and discussing their projects, while meetings with a faculty language mentor hone students’ advanced language skills as applied to the area of their research. Student presentations build oral communication skills and the ability to describe one’s work to others. Possible final projects could include a research paper on literature, film, or popular culture; an annotated translation or work of subtitling; a video essay; or an interactive map, timeline, or other digital humanities project. Students producing excellent capstone projects will be encouraged to develop them into senior honors work.
Major in Russian Language & Literature Learning Outcomes
- Advanced knowledge of major themes and genres in Russian literature and culture in their historical contexts, including links to other European and world literary traditions
- Critical thinking, communication, and writing skills within areas of content and cultural knowledge
- Familiarity with fundamental research skills for Russian studies, including use of traditional and electronic sources
- Proficiency in speaking, reading, writing, and listening comprehension in Russian at the intermediate-high level as measured by ACTFL guidelines
Graduating with Honors
To graduate with honors, students will maintain a GPA in the major of at least 3.4 and will take two additional courses above the 11 required for the major:
- one additional LR or XL course chosen with approval of the advisor.
- either TL 540 (translation seminar) or LR 401 or 402 (continuation of the thesis begun in the capstone seminar).
Minor in Russian (1106)
Required courses: (prereq: CAS LR 212 or equivalent) six courses numbered LR 240 and above. Students may include up to three transfer courses from other colleges, universities, or non-Boston University study abroad programs and must take a minimum of three courses on the Charles River Campus. Internships taken on study abroad programs may not be credited toward minor concentrations offered by the department. A grade of C or higher is required in all courses taken toward the minor.