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Georgetown University


Detailed Course Information


Fall 2017
Mar 20, 2018
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RUSS 492 - The Master & Margarita
"Master and Margarita" is widely considered the major Russian novel of the twentieth century. It is complex and intriguing: Bulgakov’s version of the New Testament is also a picaresque adventure of the Devil and his whimsical gang in the Soviet Moscow of the thirties, a beautiful romance, and a story about the fate of a writer in a bureaucratic totalitarian society. What is a greater evil: the romantic Devil or triumphant mediocrity – a member of the Writers’ Union? – asks Bulgakov. The novel was not published for thirty years, and in the sixties it was secretly passed in handwritten copies; to get it for one night was exceptional luck.

In this course, we will close-read the novel in Russian, analyze its various sources: literary, philosophical, musical and theatrical, and will attempt to solve some of its numerous mysteries. The classes are conducted mainly in Russian, in the form of discussions.

3.000 Credit hours
3.000 Lecture hours
0.000 Lab hours

Levels: MN or MC Graduate, Undergraduate
Schedule Types: Lecture

Russian Department

Course Attributes:
HALC - Hum, Art, Lit, Cul

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