Syracuse University

Renée Crown Honors Program Course Offerings & Descriptions

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The Russian Soul in Post-Revolutionary Literature

HNR 240 - The Russian Soul in Post-Revolutionary Literature

MySlice Info:

Term: Spring 2016
Class #: 37672
Section: M003
Credits: 3

Patricia Burak

Counts toward:
HNR Hum, Public Presentation

Course Time(s):
T TH 6:30 - 7:50 pm

Class times and locations often change. Please verify your class schedule in MySlice.

Course Description:

Russian literature has always reflected a deeper purpose than literary movements or plot trends would predict. David Brooks, a syndicated columnist, has described this phenomenon in a 9/13/2015 NYT editorial: "But Russia stood for something that America has never been known for: depth of soul...The dominant national tendency… saw problems as primarily spiritual rather than practical, and put matters of the soul at center stage." Even post Revolution, we understand that "While the rest of the world was going through industrialization and commercialism and embracing the whole bourgeois style of life, there was this counterculture of intense Russian writers, musicians, dancers - romantics who offered a different vocabulary, a different way of thinking and living inside." This course will explore authors, poets, dramatists and critics who continued the exploration of the Russian soul and exposed it to the rest of the world despite the Cold War and political animosities. Blok, Mayakovsky, Esenin, Zamyatin, Babel, Bulgakov, and five authors who have been awarded the Nobel Prize in Literature since the Russian Revolution will be included: Bunin (1933), Pasternak (1958), Sholokhov (1965), Solzhenitsyn (1970), and Joseph Brodsky (1987). Readings, oral reports, a film review, a panel of Russian scholars and a final paper/project will allow students to develop a true understanding of the post-revolutionary “Russian Soul.” No pre-requisites. Students who have already taken LIT 226, LIT 227, or HNR 240 “The Power of Evil in Russian Literature” may enroll in this course. There will be no repetition of readings or course material.

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