This book serves as the basic textbook for
the course. Its purpose is to provide additional details on topics
presented in lecture and discussions, as well as presenting an overview of the structure of Russian History in the
period covered in this course. This book has been chosen over other titles because of its brevity, it emphasis
on themes important in this course, and its suitability for students new to Russian history. No amount of time
spent reading it will be wasted.
2. Yevgeny Zamyatin, We.
An imaginative, futuristic novel that is a metaphor for Soviet Russia.
3. Robert V. Daniels, ed., A Documentary history of Communism in Russia : from Lenin to Gorbachev.
A valuable collection of documents illuminating key events in the history of the USSR to its fall in 1991.
4. Eric Hoffer, True Believer.
A classic discussion of the psychology of the persons
who join militant groups, fringe religious sects and
revolutionary parties. An essential read for anyone who wants to understand the Russian Revolution.
5. Richard Overy, Russia’s War, 1941-1945.
A highly readable yet detailed treatment of Russia’s involvement in the Second World War.
[These titles are required and are available at the bookstore.]
Other readings will be distributed in class as needed.
Assignments and Policies
1. Examinations. There will be two “blue-book” examinations, a mid-term and a cumulative final.
2. Quizzes. No less than three quizzes, one of which will be a map quiz. If it becomes apparent that the reading is not being done conscientiously, more, shorter quizzes may be added, at the discretion of the professor.
3. Paper. Students will select a topic for research with the approval of the instructor. This assignment is a research paper and will focus on a topic of interest to the student and related to (and supplementing) the course material. 2000 words.
4. Participation. Students will be expected to attend class and to have prepared for lectures and for discussion by having read and thought about the assigned readings in advance. Each student will periodically be assigned a primary source to present to the class during discussion sections. These presentations, plus classroom contributions of other sorts, will factor into the participation percentage of the final grade.
We will be screening a number of classic (and not-so-classic) films about Russian history in our period, including the magnificent "Burnt by the Sub" and "Nicholas and Alexandra."
Midterm exam: 20%
Final exam: 30%
2. Grades will be assigned according to the follow numerical equivalencies:
80-82 B-, .....Etc.
Academic dishonesty is a profound violation of the expected code of behavior. It can take several forms, including, but not limited to, plagiarism, cheating, misrepresentation of facts or experimental results, unauthorized use of or intentional intrusion into another's computer files and/or programs, intentional damage to a computer system, and unauthorized use of library materials and privileges.
For a course like this one, the major concern is plagiarism, partly because it remains, alas, fairly commonplace on college campuses, partly because what constitutes plagiarism is often unclear in the minds of students. For the sake of clarity, plagiarism can be defined as generally leading your reader (or in the case of oral presentations, listeners) to believe that what you have written or said is your own work when, in fact, it is not. Plagiarism runs from the rather mild to the totally flagrant. It can be the word-for-word reproduction of another person's text without quotation marks and appropriate citation. It can be a paraphrase that is far too close to the source text to constitute "being in your own words." And it can be even the unattributed borrowing of apt phrases or terminology. All of these degrees of plagiarism are equally unethical and may be penalized with failure for the assignment, or, in extreme cases, failure for the course.
The webpage for this course includes links to websites that discuss plagiarism and provide suggestions for identifying and rooting it out of your written work. Students should visit this page, especially as they prepare to write their papers.
If you are ever in doubt as to whether your written work is plagiaristic in form, do not hesitate to consult with the professor.
January 28: Alexander III and the Birth of the Modern Police State
January 30: Nationalities and Empire
February 1: Discussion (Topics for paper distributed today.)
Read: Moss, chs. 3, 4, 7;
February 4: Nicholas and Alexandra
February 6: 1905
February 8: Discussion (of Hoffer)
Read: Moss, chs. 5, 6;
Daniels, 3-14, 16-25;
February 11: Economy and Society
February 13: World War I
February 15: The Russian Revolution
Read: Moss, ch. 8;
February 18: Civil War
February 20: War on Religion
February 22: We
Read: Moss, chs. 9-11;
Film this week: Burnt By the Sun (evening screening)
February 25: NEP and Stalin
February 27: Stalin and Hitler
March 1: World War II
Read: Moss, ch. 12, 13;
Daniels, 133-39, 144-47, 153-59, 162-64, 170-75, 177-79, 185-90, 193-95, 197-208, 216-17, 223-29;
March 4: The Cold War
March 6: Events Outside the USSR
March 8: Mid Term Examination
Read: Moss, ch. 14;
March 9-17: Mid Break
March 18: Economy and Society
March 20: Religion in the USSR
March 22: No Class
Read: Moss, chs. 15, 16; Handouts.
March 25: Military Matters
March 27: Eastern Europe Up Close
March 29: Easter Break
Read: Moss, ch. 17;
April 1: Easter Break Continued
April 3: Khrushchev
April 5: Brezhnevian Stagnation
Read: Moss, chs. 18, 19;
Daniels, 280-84, 286-302, 307-323.
April 8: The “Interregnum”
April 10: Reagan, Reagan’s Ray Gun, Thatcher and Gorbachev
April 12: Reforming the Unreformable
Read: Moss, ch. 20.
April 15: Society and Culture
April 17: The East Bloc Crumbles
April 19: Discussion
Read: Moss, ch. 21.
April 22: August Putsch
April 24: Yeltsyn’s Russia
April 26: Discussion. Papers Due today.
Read: Moss, ch. 22;
Daniels, 383-89; Handouts.
April 29: The Economic Crisis
May 1: The Nationalities Crisis
May 3: The Succession Crisis
Read: Daniels, 366-83, 389-90;
May 6: Putin and the International Arena
May 7: Prospects and Predictions
Final Exam: Thursday, May 9, 2002, 8:00am-10:30am.