Since its founding in the 1940s by Vladimir Nabokov, the Russian Department has dedicated itself to excellence in literary scholarship and undergraduate teaching. Our faculty members specialize in different areas of Russian language and literature and incorporate a broad range of cultural material—history, music, and visual art—into their courses. Numerous activities both inside and outside the classroom are designed to enrich students’ appreciation of the achievements and fascinating traditions of Russian civilization. At the same time, we give our students critical skills that will serve them outside the Russian context.
Goals for the Russian Major
A student majoring in Russian should be able to
- converse fluently in Russian;
- comprehend important primary and secondary texts from the Russian literary tradition;
- discover and delineate the major themes of nineteenth-, twentieth- and twenty-first century Russian literature and culture;
- express an understanding of Russian culture clearly and persuasively
Requirements for the Russian Major
A student majoring in Russian must take at least eight units in the department above RUSS 102, including:
- Language courses through RUSS 202, and at least 2 units of language at the 300 level
- RUSS 251
- Two 200-level courses above RUSS 251
- At least 2 of the following half-unit courses: RUSS 333, RUSS 355, RUSS 376, and RUSS 377, RUSS 386
Thus, a student who begins with no knowledge of Russian would typically complete the following courses to major in Russian: RUSS 101 and RUSS 102, RUSS 201 and RUSS 202, and two courses from among RUSS 301, RUSS 302, RUSS 305, RUSS 306; RUSS 251; two 200-level literature courses above RUSS 251; and one unit from 300-level literature courses.
Requirements for the Russian Minor
A student minoring in Russian must take at least five units in the department above RUSS 102, at least one of which must be at the 300 level. RUSS 203 and RUSS 303 do not count towards the minor in Russian.