Bates Fall Semester Abroad

Bates Fall Semester Abroad, Russia

Associate Professor Browne (German and Russian Studies); Lecturer Palin (Biology)

During the fall semester 2013, Bates students, including entering first-year students, may experience the excitement of living and learning in Russia. The program is based in the beautiful and cultured city of St. Petersburg, and includes extensive travel. Courses with Bates faculty consider the history, symbolism, and reality of St. Petersburg and microbiology through the lens of Russian science and culture. No prior knowledge of Russian is required.

The program begins in late August with intensive Russian language study at the Derzharin Institute. Language courses at the institute continue through the semester. The institute arranges the homestays that place students with Russian families for the semester.

St. Petersburg has a rich and dramatic history: cradle of revolution; epicenter of industrialization; heroic survivor of the longest siege in modern history; and home of artists, poets, dancers, and musicians. Students take trips to Moscow, a city fast on its way to status as a major world capital of finance, culture, and politics, and to the ninth-century city of Novgorod, one of Russia’s most beautiful and well-preserved medieval sites. Students also travel to the Black Sea region and the Crimean peninsula of Ukraine. The program ends in mid-December. The program fulfills the requirements of General Education concentration C078, Russian in St. Petersburg.


BSAR 002. St. Petersburg: Peter's Impossible City.Founded by Peter the Great during Russia's lengthy war with Sweden, Sankt Pieter Burkh was celebrated as Peter's "window on the West." Peter the Great himself called it "paradise." But Peter's paradise was, for most Russians of the early eighteenth century, nothing more or less than the city of an after-death world founded by the tsar-antichrist. Sankt Pieter Burkh—later known as St. Petersburg, Petrograd, Leningrad, or simply Piter, as more recent inhabitants affectionately call it—has survived domestic and foreign enemies, natural and civil disasters, and revolutions of all varieties. Today "Peter's impossible city" occupies a unique place in the Russian psyche. In this course students examine the city's symbolic place in Russian culture and its role in modern Russian history from 1703 to the present. Open to first-year students. D. Browne, K. Palin. Concentrations

BSAR 003. Intensive Russian I. Open to first-year students. Staff. Concentrations

BSAR 004. Intensive Russian II. Open to first-year students. Staff. Concentrations

BSAR 015. Russian Cultures: The Microbial Perspective.In this course, we consider microbial life in the everyday Russian experience. We explore the microbial basis of traditional foods and beverages, examine the roles of microbes in the cycling of elements in composting and kitchen gardening at dachas, and consider the effects of microbial outbreaks of historic significance. We examine key discoveries in microbiology made by Russian scientists and discuss emerging and reemerging infections of current social concern with local experts doing research on contemporary public health issues. Our goal is a more thorough understanding of the importance of these amazing organisms in shaping everyday life, past and present, in Russia. Open to first-year students. Enrollment limited to 25. [S] D. Browne, K. Palin. Concentrations