Russian is the world’s 8th most spoken language and is spoken by over 144 million people in nine different countries. A gateway to learning about fascinating literary and cultural heritage, Russian is also a strategically important language for many fields, including air and space, information technology, nuclear studies, security studies, and many others.
MIT’s Russian program offers instruction in the beginning and intermediate levels of language and culture, as well as courses in Russian literature, history, and political science. The Russian program’s goals are to prepare students to communicate effectively with native speakers as well as to acquaint them with Russian culture and civilization, and in this way prepare them to function successfully in a Russian-speaking environment. Students can fulfill their HASS concentration in Russian language or Russian and Eurasian Studies, as well as pursue a minor in Russian and Eurasian Studies.
21G.611 Russian I (Regular)
Lecture: MTRF10 (16-654)
Emphasizes the development of communicative and cultural competence, as well as mastery of the foundations of Russian grammar and vocabulary. Using video, internet resources, and varied cultural materials, students work on developing speaking, reading, and writing skills. Conducted in both Russian and English. Designed for students with no knowledge of Russian. Limited to 18.
Textbooks (Fall 2018)
21G.612 Russian II (Regular)
Prereq: 21G.611 or permission of instructor
Continuing instruction in Russian language and culture with emphasis on acquisition of vocabulary and grammatical concepts through active communication. Conducted in both Russian and English. Provides exposure to the language via a video program, internet resources, and literary texts that are integrated in grammar instruction and conversation tasks. Limited to 18.
21G.613 Russian III (Regular)
Prereq: 21G.612 and permission of instructor
Lecture: MTRF12 (14E-310)
Includes comprehensive review and expansion of grammar and vocabulary. Emphasizes the development of speaking, reading, and writing skills. Examines adapted and authentic literary texts, media resources, and film. Develops communicative skills necessary for personal and professional interaction in a Russian-language environment. Limited to 18.
No required or recommended textbooks
21G.614 Russian IV (Regular)
Prereq: 21G.613 and permission of instructor
Features intermediate to advanced study of Russian with a comprehensive review of grammar, and emphasis on more complex communicative topics. Reading and writing skills developed through study of various topics in Russian culture and society. Uses a variety of authentic literary and non-fiction texts, media resources, and film. Limited to 18.
21G.618 Introduction to the Classics of Russian Literature - Russian Language Option
(Subject meets with 21G.077[J], 21L.490[J])
Prereq: 21G.614 or permission of instructor
Explores the works of classical Russian writers of the 19th and 20th centuries, including stories and novels by Pushkin, Gogol, Dostoevsky, Tolstoy, Chekhov, Bunin, Nabokov, Platonov, and others. Focuses on their approaches to portraying self and society, and on literary responses to fundamental ethical and philosophical questions about justice, freedom, free will, fate, love, loyalty, betrayal, and forgiveness. Taught in English with additional readings and a short writing project in Russian.