From literature, art and film, to technology, politics, economics, and sports, Russia’s influence on the world has been significant. By far the world’s largest country boasting untold resources, Russia remains an intriguing land of potential. By unraveling the meaning of its art, history, and politics, students can better understand how Russia helps shape the contours of world culture. The Russian Major and Minor at Holy Cross aim to develop students’ speaking skills and also to ensure broad literacy in Russian history and culture. In addition to all levels o f language study, the Russian Program offers a wide array of literature and culture courses in different centuries (early Russia, 19th century, 20th century, contemporary Russian), genres (drama, poetry, prose, film), and geographical focus (Kievan Rus, European Russia, Siberia). Students should take advantage of the variety of offerings to familiarize themselves with the many different aspects of Russian cultural history.
In the U.S., Russian is a “critical need” language. The National Security Language Initiative (NDLI) was launched in 2006 to dramatically increase the number of Americans learning critical need foreign languages such as Russian. At Holy Cross, students can attain advanced levels of speaking, reading and writing Russian during their undergraduate years. Courses are also available for native speakers. The Holy Cross Summer Program in Moscow runs from mid-June to mid-July at the Russian state University for the Humanities (RGGU). RGGU is a top-flight university located near the vibrant center of Moscow. The Moscow program offers students the opportunity to dramatically improve their Russian language skills while they immerse themselves in the everyday life, the arts and culture, and the history and political life of today’s Russia. The Moscow Program gives students one Holy Cross credit toward the Russian major or minor and allows them to advance a language level.
Department Advanced Placement Policy
Students with AP credit in Russian language or literature earn placement in the curriculum but not progress toward the minimum number of courses required by the minor. Students who take a course that duplicates the AP award in Russian will forfeit the AP credit. Students with AP credit in Russian literature will not be permitted to enroll in a course below the 300 level.
Russian minors take a minimum of six courses on the intermediate level or above.
|Required language courses:|
|Intermediate Russian 1|
and Intermediate Russian 2: Language In Action
|Russian Composition & Conversation 1|
|Three literature and/or culture classes in either Russian or English (two of which may be outside of Russian). 2|
|Tales of Desire|
|Fire & Ice: Siberia In Fiction|
|Russian Drama and the West|
|Fairytale: Russia & the World|
|19Th Century Russian Literature|
|20Th/21st Century Russian Literature|
|Soviet Art and Literature|
|Writing Under Stalin|
|Roots of Russia|
|The Soviet Union After Stalin|
Students unable to complete RUSS 301 Russian Composition & Conversation before graduation may have the requirement waived by participation in the Moscow Summer Study Abroad Program by the end of the third year, by taking an in-Russian attachment section of a course, or conducting directed research that develops 300-level language skills.
A course in 19th or 20th Century Russian Literature is highly recommended.
Students’ personal interests will dictate the distribution of these remaining courses. Students may count toward the major one of the regularly offered courses on Russia in the Political Science or History Departments. Minors who study abroad are required to take at least three courses at Holy Cross, including at least one in their fourth year.
Consult with Russian Program faculty on matters of placement and minor credit. Majors and minors who spend time in Russia on study programs may participate in academic and work internship programs offered by those programs for major and minor credit.