Russian Literature 1 LM. Forms, genres, and critical approaches (2020/2021)

Course code
Name of lecturer
Anna Giust
Anna Giust
Number of ECTS credits allocated
Other available courses
Academic sector
Language of instruction
I semestre (Lingue e letterature straniere) dal Sep 28, 2020 al Jan 9, 2021.

Lesson timetable

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Learning outcomes

During the course the analyses of specific topics and critical approaches related to Russian literature will be carried out. At the end of the course students will be able to: 1) gain the necessary critical knowledge to understand the literary issues focused on during the course and in particular referring to narrative and poetical forms and genres (LM37), as well as to history of relations between Russian literature and the publishing world (LM19); 2) carry out a deep and coherent textual and comparative analysis using the acquired knowledge; 3) express autonomous and complex opinions about specific moments in Russian literary history and its methodological issues.


The course will consider the production by Nikolay V. Gogol’ in the perspective of its coeval and subsequent reception. The interpretation of Gogol’s works will be considered in an ample spectrum of expressions in various artistic fields, from literature to theatre (including music theatre) and cinema.

The following texts will be considered in reference to their authors and their creative paths:

N. V. Gogol’, The Nose, The Overcoat, Evenings on a Farm near Dikanka (May Night, or The Drowned Maiden, Christmas Eve), Dead Souls, The Government Inspector and others;
P. I. Chaykovsky, The Tsarina’s Slippers
N.A. Rimsky-Korsakov, May Night, or The Drowned Maiden
D. D. Shostakovich, The Nose
Kozintsev-Trauberg, The Overcoat
R. Shchedrin, Dead Souls
A. Khrzhanovsky, The Nose, or Conspiracy of Mavericks

Reference books
Author Title Publisher Year ISBN Note
D. S. Merezkovskij Gogol' i cort Prideaux Press 1976
Victor Terras )ed. by) Handbook of Russian Literature 1985
A. Belyj Masterstvo Gogolja Wilhelm Fink Verlag 1969
Stanley Sadie (ed. by) The New Grove Dictionary of Opera 1994

Assessment methods and criteria

Students will be required to write a paper on one of the fundamental issues of the course, and to discuss it orally on the background of the general overview.
NB The bibliography includes also a series of articles that could not be inserted in the list (due to technical issues), and which will be provided by the teacher during the course.
At the exam, one of the aspects of knowledge verification will be the reading, translation and commentary of literary texts.
The evaluation will follow the following criteria:
- correctness and completeness of the responses in terms of content;
- analytical skills;
- clarity of presentation, argumentative ability and knowledge of the specific vocabulary.

Assessment method: single mark out of thirty. During the evaluation phase, the quality of personal reworking and the ownership of language with which the topics will be exposed will be taken into account.