Spring 2016 Honors

REEEC would like to congratulate the following student award winners:

2016 Yaro Skalnik Prize for Best Student Essay

Graduate Student – Matthew Klopfenstein for his essay, “Modernity and the Task of Ozdorovlenie: Russian Doctors and the Discourse of School Hygiene” written for HIST 594 – Introduction to Historical Writing (Spring 2016) taught by Tamara Chaplin and Nils Jacobsen (paper adviser, Mark Steinberg).

Summer 2016 FLAS Fellows

Graduate Students

  • Jeffrey Castle (Germanic Languages and Literatures) – Czech
  • Frederick Miller (Music) – Russian
  • Tyler Dolan (Slavic Languages and Literatures) – Russian
  • LeiAnna Hamel (Slavic Languages and Literatures) – Russian

Undergraduate Students

  • Sharadyn Ciota (Political Science) – Russian
  • Ariel Glaviano (Applied Health Sciences) – Russian

REEEC would also like to congratulate the following graduating students:

M.A. in Russian, East European, and Eurasian Studies

  • Emily Lipira
  • Bethany Wages

B.A. in Russian, East European, and Eurasian Studies

  • Gabriella Repala

 

Fall 2016 Course Offerings

REES 116, Intro to Russian Culture: Instructed by Prof. Richard Tempest.

Topic: Putin. This course will meet with RUSS 199 C. Students interested in this topic and who have taken REES 115 previously should register for RUSS 199 C.

MWF, 1:00-1:50PM, 370 Armory

REES 200, Intro to Russia and Eurasia: Instructed by Maureen Marshall. Survey of the societies and states formerly constituted as the Soviet Union.

Interdisciplinary and team-taught. Combines lectures, discussions, and films covering the history, political science, economics, sociology, and culture of the area.

Tu/Th, 2:00-3:20 PM, 104 Talbot

REES 550, Seminar in REEE Studies: Instructed by Dr. Judith Pintar Interdisciplinary seminar involving faculty in a number of disciplines.

The course examines Russia, Eastern Europe, and Eurasia and the methodologies of its study through questions of identities, cultural values, and change.

Meets with REES 495, Senior Seminar. M, 3:00-4:50 PM, 1020 Lincoln Hall

LIS 490, Social Media and Global Change: Instructed by Dr. Damian Duffy.

This course covers the impact of global and national computer networks on politics, culture, and social relations during a time of upheaval and revolutionary change. Topics may include the new social media, the politics and culture of the internet, hacktivism, cyber warfare, and mobile telephony and their role in the formation, dissemination, manipulation, and suppression of public opinion in Russia/Eurasia, the China/Pacific region, Central/South America, as well as Africa, Iran, and the Middle East.

Tu/Th, 9-11:20 AM, 109 Graduate School of Library & Information Science (Tu) and 242 Graduate School of Library & Information Science (Th)

HIST 260, Introduction to Russian History: Instructed by Prof. Diane Koenker.

This course explores the main themes and problems of Russian history from earliest times to the present.

MWF, 10:00-10:50 AM, 146 Armory

HIST 400, War, Politics, Society, and Culture: From the War of the Austrian Succession to the War on Terror: Instructed by PhD Candidate in the Department of History Stefan Djordjevic.

This course explores the relationship between warfare, culture, and society beginning in the Enlightenment and culminating with the recent Yugoslav Wars and the on-going War on Terror. During the semester, we will discuss battles seared in the popular imagination such as Antietam, Omaha beach, and Waterloo as well as lesser known, yet equally significant, killing fields including Königgrätz, Lucknow, and the Masurian Lakes.

Tu/Th, 2:00-3:20, 315 Gregory Hall

HIST 560, Problems in Russian History: Politics, Society, and Culture in Modern Russia, 1901-1917: Instructed by Prof. Mark Steinberg.

Major themes in Russian history from the early nineteenth century to the revolution of 1917, especially the exercise and justifications of authority, intellectual and cultural trends, and social life and experience. Central to the course are questions of methodology and theory as well as of the interpretation of the Russian past. The emphasis is on examining new work and new approaches. Topics to be explored (which may evolve depending on student interest) include practices and representations of power, cultural construction and experience, the intelligentsia, cities, the province, peasants, civil society, gender, sex, religion, and empire.

Tu, 1:00-2:50 PM, 318 Gregory Hall

SOC 196, Introduction to Central Asia: Instructed by Prof. Cynthia Buckley.

We focus on three overarching questions to structure our exploration of Central Asia. In the first section, we focus on approaches to the question, “What is Central Asia?” Comparing and contrasting how we identify the area historically and by familiarizing ourselves with the basic geography of the region and key social, cultural, political and economic issues. In the second section we will focus on the question, “How can we analyze the region sociologically?” highlighting issues of basic social theory and comparative analysis. The third section of the course turns to the question, “Why does Central Asia matter?”, providing participants with the opportunity to link what we have learned about the region and social theory into evaluating global issues concerning gender, human rights, citizenship, and civil society.

MWF, 4:00 PM-5:00 PM, 1002 Lincoln Hall; “Flipped Friday” sessions (online)

SOC 270, Population Issues: Instructed by Prof. Cynthia Buckley

Examines the current world population situation; the historical and current patterns of birth, death, migration, marriage, contraception, and abortion; and the world food and energy resources, crowding, and problems of overpopulation.

Course Information: Same as RSOC 270. MWF, 2:00-2:50 PM, 1002 Lincoln Hall

RLST/SAME 401: Gender and Hinduism: Instructed by Dr. Jessica Vantine Birkenholtz.

This course explores the traditional identities, roles, and expectations of Hindu women, men, and the ‘third sex,’ as well as popular Hindu beliefs and lived practices in both the divine and earthly realms, from the ancient period through the present day. We will assess the ways in which these normative ideologies and gendered practices are being challenged in the modern world. Our sources will include authoritative texts and treatises, myths and other historical narratives, contemporary ethnography, and film.

Tu/Th, 2-3:20 PM, 346 Davenport Hall

RLST 481, Muslim Ethics in the Global Age: Instructed by Prof. Valerie Hoffman.

Many Westerners are highly critical of Muslims and allege that they embrace values that are contrary to Western liberalism; some promote fear of Islam itself. Are Muslims necessarily tied to a tradition that alienates them from today’s global society? How are Muslims incorporating, changing, and analyzing their tradition and their place in the contemporary world? This course explores the ideas and writings of contemporary, often revisionist, Muslim scholars on a broad range of ethical issues that face societies today, such as human rights, gender and sexuality, religious pluralism, just war, and bioethics.

Th, 4-6:30 PM, 1068 Lincoln Hall

LAW 656, International Law: Instructed by Dr. Francis A. Boyle.

The nature, sources, and subjects of international law and its place in the control of international society; includes an examination of the law of jurisdiction, territory, recognition and succession of states, rights and immunities of states in foreign courts, diplomatic immunities, treaties, protection of citizens abroad, settlement of international disputes, war and neutrality, the United Nations, and the International Court of Justice.

M/Tu, 3-4:15 PM

PS 549, Topics in Comparative Politics: Instructed by Prof. Carol Leff.

Selected research topics designed for graduate study in Comparative Politics.

Tu, 9:30-11:50 am

Springtime Honors

REEEC would like to congratulate the following student award winners:

2015 Yaro Skalnik Prize for the Best Student Essay

Graduate Student – Alana Holland (REEEC) – “Writing the Holocaust where ‘Things’re a little diffrent’: Jáchym Topol and the Merits of the Postmodernist Style to Presenting the Holocaust in Eastern Europe”

Prof. Carol Leff (Assoc. Professor of Political Science) announcing the graduate student winner of the Yaro Skalnik Prize - Alana Holland.

Prof. Carol Leff (Assoc. Professor of Political Science) announcing the graduate student winner of the Yaro Skalnik Prize – Alana Holland.

Undergraduate Student – Lucy Pakhnyuk (REEEC and Political Science) – “From Hybrid Regime to Holy Regime: An Analysis of Putin’s Discursive Politics Since 2011”

Prof. Carol Leff announcing the undergraduate student winner of the Yaro Skalnik Prize - Lucy Pakhnyuk.

Prof. Carol Leff announcing the undergraduate student winner of the Yaro Skalnik Prize – Lucy Pakhnyuk.

Summer 2015 FLAS Fellows

Graduate Students:

  • Anna Harbaugh (History) – Georgian
  • Nadia Hoppe (Slavic Languages and Literatures) – Russian
  • Sabrina Jaszi (Library and Information Science) – Russian
  • Emily Lipira (REEEC) – Russian
  • Mitchell Margolis (Urban and Regional Planning) – Turkish
  • Matthew McWilliams (REEEC) – Russian
  • Alejandra Pires (Slavic Languages and Literatures) – Russian
  • Bethany Wages (REEEC) – Turkish
  • Austin Yost (History) – Russian

Undergraduate Students:

  • Anthony Pearce (Slavic Languages and Literatures) – Russian
  • Gabriella Repala (REEEC) – Russian

Fall 2015 Course Offerings

The following courses will be offered in the fall to interested students.

ARTH 541: The Russian Avant-Garde
Kristin Romberg, Assistant Professor of Art History, School of Art+Design
Tuesday, 2-4:50pm, 15 Art and Design Building

Interest in art produced in Russia between 1908 and 1930 has often been motivated by the particularities of its revolutionary political context, yet interpreted in terms of Western European notions of modernism. In this seminar, we will attempt to develop a more “glocal” understanding of the work by situating it in relation to ideas like Alexander Bogdanov’s tectonic systems theory, Mikhail Bakhtin’s aesthetics of answerability, Leon Trotsky’s perpetual revolution, and Aleksei Gastev’s scientific organization of labor, as well as familiar modernist aesthetic models, such as the avant-garde, medium-specific formalism, and the Gesamtkunstwerk.

LAW 656: International Law
Francis Boyle, Professor of Law
Monday and Tuesday, 3-4:15pm

The nature, sources, and subjects of international law and its place in the control of international society; includes an examination of the law of jurisdiction, territory, recognition and succession of states, rights and immunities of states in foreign courts, diplomatic immunities, treaties, protection of citizens abroad, settlement of international disputes, war and neutrality, the United Nations, and the International Court of Justice. Please contact Prof. Boyle at fboyle(at)illinois.edu for further information.

LIS 530: REEES Bibliographic Research Methods
Christopher M Condill, Slavic Acquisitions Specialist
Friday, 2-3:50pm, 109 Graduate School of Library & Information Science

The LIS 504 prerequisite is WAIVED for this 530 section. Description: This course is designed to provide graduate students in both area and information studies with a comprehensive introduction to research techniques in the Russian & East European field. Depending on enrollment, course content is designed to cover a broad range of interests–for example, Central Asia as well as Russia–while demonstrating that many tools serve more than one specialty. The course will also discuss the resources and skills required for digital scholarship, as well as traditional approaches.

EPS 533: Global Youth & Citizenship
Linda Herrera, Professor of Politics of Education
Wednesday, 7-9pm

Discusses youth and citizenship in a global context. Covers the social construction of children and youth, the sociology of global generations, education and social media, and new youth movements in the digital age. Draws on a diversity of case studies from North America, the Middle East and North Africa, sub-Saharan Africa, Europe and Latin America.

The development of this course (EPS 533) was made possible through generous support from the Department of Education Title VI National Resource Center (NRC) program. This course is a lasting outcome of a cross-center initiative for Global Informatics research and training at Illinois NRCs.

Faculty Activities and Achievements

REEEC is very pleased to share the following activities and achievements of its faculty affiliates:

Mohammad Babadoost (Professor of Plant Pathology and Extension Specialist) gave a presentation entitled “Social Transition and Food Security in the Caucasus and Central Asia Regions” on August 5, 2014, for the Midwest Institute’s workshops on “Food, Water, and Quality of Life” at Kalamazoo Valley Community College in Kalamazoo, Michigan.

Bruce Fouke (Professor of Geology and Microbiology) has been named the 2014 American Association of Petroleum Geologists (AAPG) Roy Huffington Distinguished Lecturer for the Asia Pacific. The tour will include lectures and fieldwork in New Zealand, Australia, China, Vietnam, India, and Japan in late fall 2014.

Diane Koenker (Professor of History) gave the Simian Humanities Lecture at East China Normal University in Shanghai in May 2014, “Mad Men in Moscow: Sex and Style in Soviet 1960s Film.” She spent the rest of her summer continuing research on her project “The Soviet Sixties.”

Marek Sroka (Associate Professor of Library Administration) had his article “War Through Children’s Eyes in the Archiwum Wschodnie (Eastern Archive) Collection” published in Slavic and East European Information Resources.

Richard Tempest (Associate Professor of Slavic Languages and Literatures) had his article “Gachev Rampant, Rozanov Couchant, or Russia’s Two Physiologists of Culture” published in the September 2014 issue of SocioBrains. He presented the paper “Russia and the EuroMaidan” at the III International Political Marketing Forum in Bucharest, Romania. He gave the interviews “Richard Tempest i Vasilii Zharkov: demokratiia – tsennostnyi vybor?” (http://gefter.ru/archive/12534) on June 18, 2014; “Russkie istoricheskie travmy: spor bez uproshchenii. Telemost Moskva – Sofia”; “Vasilii Zharkov vs. Richard Tempest” (http://gefter.ru/archive/12414) on June 6, 2014; and “Richard Tempest – Boris Elizarov: istoriia kak pamiat’ istorika” (http://gefter.ru/archive/12337) on May 23, 2014. He also became a member of the editorial board for SocioBrains (Sofia, Bulgaria) in 2014 and Filosofski nauki (Sofia, Bulgaria) in 2013.

Steve Witt (Head of the International and Area Studies Library) received Fulbright funding to visit Belarus in November 2014 to provide a keynote address at the XIV International Conference on the Management of University Libraries in Gomel.

 

Breaking Stalin’s Nose: New Curriculum for Middle Schools

Breaking Stalin’s Nose by Eugene Yelchin centers around Sasha Zaichik, a ten year old boy living in Moscow with his father during Stalin’s great terror. Sasha idolizes Stalin, and is excited about his upcoming initiation into the Young Pioneers of the Communist Party. But the night before the initiation his father, a high ranking member of the secret police, is himself arrested. The narrative follows Sasha on this day, the day he has waited for his whole life, as his world is turned upside down, and he begins to question everything he has been taught. breaking-stalins-nose

To provide insight into propaganda, political culture, citizenship and everyday life in the Soviet Union, the Russian, East European, and Eurasian Center has recently developed a module for middle schools around this novel. Building on the interactive website that accompanies the book, the lesson plan also invites students to consider issues around political participation and indoctrination more broadly. This module fulfills Common Core Standards ELA-LITERACY.RL. 6.1.- 6.2., ELA-LITERACY.RH.6-8.3 to 6-8.4, Illinois State Goals 14.c.3, 18.B.3a, and 18.B.3b.

In order to gain access to the materials, users will be asked to fill out a request form. Once the form is completed, users will be directed to the materials via a link on the form’s thank-you screen. REEEC will send any additional materials needed (films, books, etc.) at no charge. For more information please contact REEEC program coordinator Katrina Chester at krchest@illinois.edu. For additional instructional materials and opportunities for curriculum development, please consult our page For Teachers or subscribe to our K-12 listserv at UIREEEC_K-12-L@listserv.uiuc.edu.

New Community College Curriculum Module: Everyday Life under Late Socialism

In Spring 2013, the Institute of National Remembrance in Warsaw kindly donated three copies of its recently created Kolejka/Queue, an educational board game that tells the story of everyday life in Poland at the tail-end of the communist era. Kolejka simulates the challenges families faced in terms of obtaining consumer products and services in a socialist economy of shortage. It provides players insight into the workings of planning, the informal economy, the system of blat and party patronage, and the state socialist appropriation of private time.

Source: Kolejka Instructions (2011).

To help students gain critical understanding of daily life under socialism, REEEC has recently developed a set of curriculum guides for high school and community college instruction around this game. The individual and group activities ask students to observe the temporal, social, and emotional aspects that defined socialist consumption and invite them to identify the formal characteristics of daily life. Students will also contemplate on how people’s subjective experience varied based on their membership in a particular social category and the kinds of goods/services they sought to obtain. Lastly, in the framework of a class role-play, they will consider socialist democracy at work and compile a prioritized list of reforms to meet the demands of their “wider socialist society”.

The module fulfills Illinois State Goals 16.A.5a-b and National Social Studies Standards in World History for the 20th Century Since 1945. The lesson plans are accompanied by a bibliography of recent scholarly literature on everyday life and a list of additional instructional resources (relevant works of fiction, printed primary sources, documentaries, motion pictures, digital photo archives, websites, blogs and other lesson plans). For additional instructional materials and opportunities for curriculum development, please consult our page For Teachers or subscribe to our K-12 listserv at UIREEEC_K-12-L@listserv.uiuc.edu.

Zsuzsánna Magdó is a Ph.D. Candidate at the Department of History. Her research interests include modern eastern Europe, nationalism, minorities, religion, state socialism, utopian thought and practice.  She expects to defend her dissertation “Inventing a Godless Nation: State Atheism and Socialist Culture in Romania, 1948-1989” in May 2015.