Slavic (SLAV)

SLAV 100 Slavic Civilization

This introductory course examines selected topics in the cultural and political history of Slavic peoples. Topics include: the origins and pre-history of the Slavs, Slavic languages and literary culture, religions of the Slavs (Orthodoxy, Catholicism, Protestantism, Islam), the origins of Slavic nationalism and Pan-Slavism and the formation of Eastern/Central Europe. The course combines lectures with discussions of literary texts in translation, film, music and art.

For BA Students: History and Tradition Sector

Taught by: Verkholantsev

Course offered fall; odd-numbered years

Also Offered As: HIST 231, RUSS 103

Activity: Lecture

1 Course Unit

SLAV 109 Central European Culture and Civilization

This course is normally offered through Penn-in-Prague during summer. The reappearance of the concept of Central Europe is one of the most fascinating results of the collapse of the Soviet empire. The course will provide an introduction into the study of this region based on the commonalties and differences between Austria, Czechoslovakia, Hungary, Poland and Germany. The topics will include the history of arts and literature, as well as broader cultural and historical patterns characteristic of this part of Europe.

Taught by: Steiner

Course not offered every year

Activity: Lecture

1 Course Unit

Notes: This is Penn-in-Prague course

SLAV 391 Slavic Language II

Activity: Lecture

1 Course Unit

SLAV 392 Topics in Film Studies

Course not offered every year

Also Offered As: AFRC 392, ARTH 389, CIMS 392, COML 391, ENGL 392

Activity: Seminar

1 Course Unit

SLAV 394 Slavic Language III

Activity: Lecture

1 Course Unit

SLAV 395 Intermediate Serbo-Croatian II

You will continue learning grammar structures and developing vocabulary related to everyday-life situations. You will further develop your listening, speaking, reading, and writing skills.

Taught by: Scepanovic-Ulia

Activity: Lecture

1 Course Unit

SLAV 399 Independent Study

One-term course offered either term

Activity: Independent Study

1 Course Unit

Notes: May be repeated for credit

SLAV 500 History of Literary Theory

Over the last three decades, the fields of literary and cultural studies have been reconfigured by a variety of theoretical and methodological developments. Bracing and often confrontational dialogues between theoretical and political positions as varied as Deconstruction, New Historicism, Cultural Materialism, Feminism, Queer Theory, Minority Discourse Theory, Colonial and Post-colonial Studies and Cultural Studies have, in particular, altered disciplinary agendas and intellectual priorities for students embarking on the /professional /study of literature. In this course, we will study key texts, statements and debates that define these issues, and will work towards a broad knowledge of the complex rewriting of the project of literary studies in process today. The reading list will keep in mind the Examination List in Comparative Literature we will not work towards complete coverage but will ask how crucial contemporary theorists engage with the longer history and institutional practices of literary criticism. There will be no examinations. Students will make one class presentation, which will then be reworked into a paper (1200-1500 words) to be submitted one week after the presentation. A second paper will be an annotated bibliography on a theoretical issue or issues that a student wishes to explore further. The bibliography will be developed in consultation with the instructor; it will typically include three or four books and six to eight articles or their equivalent. The annotated bibliography will be prefaced by a five or six page introduction; the whole will add up to between 5000 and 6000 words of prose. Students will prepare position notes each week, which will either be posted on a weblog or circulated in class.

Taught by: Copeland/Platt

Course not offered every year

Also Offered As: CLST 511, COML 501, ENGL 571, GRMN 534, ROML 512

Activity: Seminar

1 Course Unit

SLAV 501 Elementary Polish I

This course is for students who want to acquire the linguistic skills necessary for communication in everyday situations and that would constitute a solid base for further study of the Polish language. In addition students will become acquainted with various aspects of Polish culture (including Polish films), history and contemporary affairs. Students will learn through classroom exercises based on a modern textbook, completion of individual and group assignments and work with various audio and video materials. The textbook Hurra - Po Polsku 1 is written in the spirit of the communicative approach, which makes it possible to communicate from the very beginning of the learning process. The special attention, however, will be paid on systematic development of all language skills: listening, reading, speaking and writing.

For BA Students: Language Course

Taught by: Dziedzic

Two terms. student may enter either term.

Prerequisites: No prerequisite.

Activity: Lecture

1 Course Unit

Notes: Offered through the Penn Language Center.

SLAV 502 Elementary Polish II

This course is a continuation of the SLAV501 680. This is for students who want to acquire the linguistic skills necessary for communication in everyday situations and that would constitute a solid base for further study of the Polish language. In addition students will become acquainted with various aspects of Polish culture (including Polish films), history and contemporary affairs. Students will learn through classroom exercises based on a modern textbook, completion of individual and group assignments and work with various audio and video materials. The textbook Hurra - Po Polsku 1 is written in the spirit of the communicative approach, which makes it possible to communicate from the very beginning of the learning process. The special attention, however, will be paid on systematic development of all language skills: listening, reading, speaking and writing.

For BA Students: Language Course

Taught by: Dziedzic

Two terms. student may enter either term.

Prerequisites: SLAV 501 or Instructor's permission.

Activity: Lecture

1 Course Unit

Notes: Offered through the Penn Language Center.

SLAV 503 Intermediate Polish I

This is a first-semester intermediate -level language course that emphasizes the development of the four basic skills (reading, writing, listening, and speaking) within a culturally based context. Class time will focus on communicative activities that combine grammatical concepts, relevant vocabulary, and cultural themes. Students will learn through classroom exercises based on a modern textbook: Hurra Po Polsku 2, completion of individual and group assignments and work with various audio and video materials. Major course goals include: the acquisition of intermediate-level vocabulary, the controlled use of the Polish cases; the aspect of the verbs, the development of writing skills.

For BA Students: Language Course

Taught by: Wolski-Moskoff

Two terms. student may enter either term.

Prerequisites: SLAV 502 or placement exam.

Activity: Lecture

1 Course Unit

Notes: Offered through the Penn Language Center.

SLAV 504 Intermediate Polish II

This course is a continuation of the SLAV503 680. This is a second-semester intermediate -level language course that emphasizes the development of the four basic skills (reading, writing, listening, and speaking) within a culturally based context. Class time will focus on communicative activities that combine grammatical concepts, relevant vocabulary, and cultural themes. Students will learn through classroom exercises based on a modern textbook: Hurra Po Polsku 2, completion of individual and group assignments and work with various audio and video materials. Major course goals include: the acquisition of intermediate-level vocabulary, the controlled use of the Polish cases; the aspect of the verbs, the development of writing skills.

For BA Students: Last Language Course

Taught by: Wolski-Moskoff

Two terms. student may enter either term.

Prerequisite: SLAV 503 or placement

Activity: Lecture

1 Course Unit

Notes: Offered through the Penn Language Center.

SLAV 505 Polish for heritage speakers I.

The course is addressed to students who have spoken Polish at home and seek to achieve proficiency in the language. The main goal of this course is to provide instruction directed at students continued development of existing competencies in the Polish language. Students will acquire skills that range from learning grammar and spelling, and developing vocabulary, to interpretation and analysis of different literary genres. Students will explore a broad variety of cultural themes. Topics will include: Polish literature - classic and modern, social life, contemporary affairs and films. Upon completion of the Polish for Heritage Speakers course, students are expected to confidently understand, read, write and speak Polish with an increased vocabulary and a better command of Polish grammar. They will increase their reading skills through interpretation and analysis of different Polish literary genres. Students will be able to organize their thoughts and write in a coherent manner. They will increase their writing skills by writing personal essays, compositions and others. Students will further their knowledge of the Polish language and will engage in class discussion on various topics. Students will gain a better understanding of the Polish culture.

For BA Students: Language Course

Taught by: Dziedzic

Course not offered every year

Prerequisite: Instructor permission required

Activity: Lecture

1 Course Unit

Notes: STUDENTS WHO COMPLETE TWO SEMESTERS OF THIS COURSE SATISFY THE PENN LANGUAGE REQUIREMENT. Polish is used exclusively in the classroom.

SLAV 506 Polish for Heritage Speakers II

Continuation of SLAV505

For BA Students: Last Language Course

Taught by: Dziedzic

Course not offered every year

Prerequisites: SLAV505 or placement test.

Activity: Lecture

1 Course Unit

SLAV 526 In Defiance of Babel: the Quest for a Universal Language

This is a course in intellectual history. It explores the historical trajectory, from antiquity to the present day, of the idea that there once was, and again could be, a universal and perfect language to explain and communicate the essence of human experience. The idea that the language spoken in the Garden of Eden was a language which perfectly expressed the essence of all possible objects and concepts has occupied the minds of scholars for more than two millennia. In defiance of the myth of the Tower of Babel and the confusion of languages, they strived to overcome divine punishment and discover the path back to harmonious existence. For philosophers, the possibility of recovering or recreating a universal language would enable apprehension of the laws of nature. For theologians, it would allow direct experience of the divinity. For mystic-cabalists it would offer access to hidden knowledge. For nineteenth-century philologists the reconstruction of the proto-language would enable a better understanding of human history. For contemporary scholars, linguistic universals provide structural models both for human and artificial languages. For writers and poets of all times, from Cyrano de Bergerac to Velimir Khlebnikov, the idea of a universal and perfect language has been an inexhaustible source of inspiration. Above all, the course examines fundamental questions of what language is and how it functions. Among the course readings are works by Plato, Aristotle, St. Augustine, Dante, Horapollo, Bacon, Giordano Bruno, John Wilkins, Cyrano de Bergerac, Jonathan Swift, and Zamenhof.

Taught by: Verkholantsev

Course not offered every year

Also Offered As: COML 526, ENGL 705, HIST 526

Activity: Seminar

1 Course Unit

SLAV 530 Elementary Czech I

An introduction to the fundamentals of the Czech language, acquisition of conversational, reading and writing skills.

For BA Students: Language Course

Two terms. student may enter either term.

Activity: Lecture

1 Course Unit

Notes: Offered through the Penn Language Center.

SLAV 531 Elementary Czech II

Continuation of SLAV 530

For BA Students: Language Course

Taught by: Stejskal

Two terms. student may enter either term.

Prerequisite: SLAV 530 or Placement

Activity: Lecture

1 Course Unit

Notes: Offered through the Penn Language Center.

SLAV 532 Intermediate Czech I

Emphasis on vocabulary building, conversation and reading skills. Grammar review.

For BA Students: Language Course

Taught by: Stejskal

Two terms. student may enter either term.

Prerequisite: SLAV 531 or Placement

Activity: Lecture

1 Course Unit

Notes: Offered through the Penn Language Center.

SLAV 533 Intermediate Czech II

Continuation of SLAV 532

For BA Students: Last Language Course

Taught by: Stejskal

Two terms. student may enter either term.

Prerequisite: SLAV 532 or Placement

Activity: Lecture

1 Course Unit

Notes: Offered through the Penn Language Center.

SLAV 534 Advanced Czech I

Emphasis on advanced vocabulary building, conversation and reading skills. Advanced grammar review.

Taught by: Stejskal

Two terms. student may enter either term.

Prerequisite: Two years of Czech or placement

Activity: Lecture

1 Course Unit

Notes: Offered through the Penn Language Center.

SLAV 535 Advanced Czech II

Continuation of SLAV 534

Taught by: Stejskal

Two terms. student may enter either term.

Prerequisite: SLAV 534 or placement

Activity: Lecture

1 Course Unit

Notes: Offered Through the Penn Language Center.

SLAV 575 Slavic Literary Theory in Western Context

This course will compare selected theoretical concepts advanced by Russian Formalists, Prague Structuralists, and the Bakhtin group (e.g., defamiliarization, aesthetic sign, dialogue) with similar or analogous notions drawn from Western intellectual tradition.

Taught by: Steiner

Also Offered As: COML 579

Activity: Seminar

1 Course Unit

SLAV 590 Elementary Ukrainian I

An introduction to the fundamentals of the Ukrainian language, acquisition of conversational, reading and writing skills.

For BA Students: Language Course

Taught by: Rudnytzky

Two terms. student may enter either term.

Activity: Lecture

1 Course Unit

Notes: Offered through the Penn Language Center

SLAV 591 Elementary Ukrainian II

Continuation of SLAV 590

For BA Students: Language Course

Taught by: Rudnytzky

Two terms. student may enter either term.

Prerequisite: SLAV 590 or Placement

Activity: Lecture

1 Course Unit

Notes: Offered through the Penn Language Center

SLAV 592 Intermediate Ukrainian I

Emphasis on vocabulary building, conversation and reading skills. Grammar review.

For BA Students: Language Course

Taught by: Rudnytzky

Two terms. student may enter either term.

Prerequisites: SLAV 591 or placement test.

Activity: Lecture

1 Course Unit

Notes: Offered through the Penn Language Center

SLAV 593 Intermediate Ukrainian II

Continuation of SLAV 592

For BA Students: Last Language Course

Taught by: Rudnytzky

Two terms. student may enter either term.

Prerequisite: SLAV 592 or Placement

Activity: Lecture

1 Course Unit

Notes: Offered through the Penn Language Center

SLAV 594 Advanced Ukrainian I

Emphasis on advanced vocabulary building, conversation and reading skills. Advanced grammar review.

For BA Students: Advanced Language Course

Taught by: Rudnytzky

Two terms. student may enter either term.

Prerequisite: SLAV 593 or Placement

Activity: Lecture

1 Course Unit

Notes: Offered through the Penn Language Center

SLAV 595 Advanced Ukrainian II

Continuation of SLAV 594

For BA Students: Advanced Language Course

Taught by: Rudnytzky

Two terms. student may enter either term.

Prerequisite: SLAV 594 or Placement

Activity: Lecture

1 Course Unit

Notes: Offered through the Penn Language Center

SLAV 599 Independent Study

Activity: Independent Study

1 Course Unit

SLAV 610 Topics in Second Language Acquisition

Taught by: Shardakova

Course not offered every year

Activity: Seminar

1 Course Unit

SLAV 619 East & West in Medieval Europe: Bohemia as Center in the Age of the Luxemburgs

The seminar will examine a range of topics in Medieval Studies viewing European medieval civilization as encompassing the whole ("global") geographic and cultural space of Europe and ignoring reference to contemporary socio-political division of Europe into "Western" and "Eastern." As a case study, the course focuses on the 14th-century Holy Roman Empire from Henry VII to the Emperor Sigismund, and particularly on the reign of Charles IV, in a context in which Prague becomes the imperial capital and Bohemia a center of Europe. A detailed examination of this monarch's vision of a "Global Europe" will allow us to explore a network of connections, a network that stretches from Prague to the farthermost western, eastern and southern corners of the European continent. We will examine correspondences and differences between various linguistic, textual, political, and religious communities, while attempting to show how Latin and Slavic European cultures were interwoven. Some of the titles from the reading list are Charles IV's The Life of St. Wenceslas and Autobiography, The Golden Bull, Dante's Letters & Monarchia, Machaut's Jugement of the King of Bohemia, Petrarch's Epistolae & Poems, Froissart's Prison of Love, Johannes von Tepl's The Plowman of Bohemia, The Life of St. Constantin the Philosopher, fragments from Czech, French, Italian, Polish, Hungarian and Rus medieval chronicles, etc. All reading will be done in English, with original language versions always available.

Taught by: Brownlee and Verkholantsev

Also Offered As: COML 619

Activity: Seminar

1 Course Unit

SLAV 620 Europe: From Idea to Union

Employing the methods from the humanities and social sciences this interdisciplinary seminar will explore the variety of factors that contributed to dividing and uniting Europe. The continent will be considered as a geographical and cultural space and the construction of its identity will be examined through several historical periods-from the Middle Ages to Modernism--comprising the rich layer of pan-European civilization across the ethnic or national borders. Finally, the structure of the European Union will be scrutinized including its institutions, decision-making mechanism, shared currency, collective security, and Europe's changing relationship with the USA. Participants will be encouraged to select a particular topic in European studies and research it through assigned readings, film, literature, and other media. The individual projects will be developed through consultations with the instructor into a class presentation leading to a final paper (about 6,000 words).

Taught by: Steiner

Course not offered every year

Activity: Seminar

1 Course Unit

SLAV 623 Historiography of Imperial and Soviet Russia

We will cover the development of Russian historical research and writing from the start of the eighteenth century to the present, focusing on major texts, schools and figures. Alongside this traditional historiographical architecture, segments of the course will be devoted as well to a variety of theoretical models and approaches to research, including: institutional history, cultural history, poetics of history, philosophy of history, "invention of tradition," trauma studies, and others.

Taught by: Platt

Course usually offered in fall term

Also Offered As: HIST 620

Prerequisites: At least advanced reading knowledge of Russian. Seminar discussion will be conducted in English, but a fair amount of reading will be assigned in Russian.

Activity: Seminar

1 Course Unit

SLAV 651 Theories of Representation

The course will examine major Western theories of sign and representation from Socrates to Derrida. Primary focus will be on twentieth-century trends including phenomenology, structuralism, and Marxism. Readings will include: Plato, St. Augustine, Pierce, Husserl, Jakobson, Bakhtin, Voloshinov, Eco, Derrida and others.

Taught by: Steiner

Course not offered every year

Also Offered As: COML 650

Activity: Seminar

1 Course Unit

SLAV 655 History, Memory, Trauma

This course will be devoted to study of the theory and practice of representation of the past in major European traditions during the modern era, with special emphasis on three topics of broad concern: revolution, genocide, and national becoming. The object of inquiry will be construed broadly, to include all manner of historiographic, artistic, filmic, literary and rhetorical representation of the past. Each of the three segments of the course will begin with examination of important theoretical readings in conjunction with case studies in major European traditions that have been among the central foci of this theoretical work (French Revolutionary history, Holocaust, English nationalism). Next we will add analogous Russian cases to the picture (Russian Revolution, Gulag memory, Ivan the Terrible and Peter the Great as national myths). Finally, at the conclusion of each segment students will bring theoretical tools to bear on the national traditions and contexts relevant to their own work. Our readings in the theory and philosophy of history and historiography will include works by: Anderson, Caruth, Guha, Hegel, LaCapra, Putnam, Ricoeur, White and others.

Taught by: Platt

Course not offered every year

Also Offered As: COML 654

Activity: Seminar

1 Course Unit

Notes: All readings and lectures in English.

SLAV 657 Formalism, Bakhtin et al.

This course deals in depth with the three seminal literary-theoretical trends in Slavic philology during the inter war and the early post-war periods. It starts with Russian Formalism, a school striving to pin down what differentiates literary discourse from all other forms of language and continues with the Prague Structuralism that redefined the tenets of Formalisms from a semiotic perspective. Finally, the Bakhtin circle's key concepts meta-linguistics, dialogue and carnivals are discussed. All readings are in English.

Taught by: Steiner

Course not offered every year

Also Offered As: COML 657

Activity: Seminar

1 Course Unit

SLAV 999 Independent Study

One-term course offered either term

Activity: Independent Study

1 Course Unit