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November 28, 2022 / Irene2468

Newberry Adult Education Course for 2023 – Focus on Ukraine: Gogol’s Ukrainian Tales, Babel’s Odessa Stories, and Bulgakov’s White Guard

Illustration for White Guard by Sergei Gonkov, 1982

Six months after the beginning of the full-scale Russian invasion of Ukraine in February, 2022, the Ukrainian Education Ministry announced that the Russian language courses had been removed from Ukraine’s school curriculum, along with works by Russian and Belarusian writers. The foreign literature courses have retained books by authors “who wrote in Russian, but whose life and work were closely connected to Ukraine,” including such writers as Nikolai Gogol (Mykola Hohol in Ukrainian; 1809-1852), Isaac Babel (1894-1940), and Mikhail Bulgakov (1891-1940).

We will read and discuss Gogol, Babel, and Bulgakov, while simultaneously examining the history and culture of Ukraine from the rise and fall of Kyivan Rus, the Polish and Lithuanian rule, the Cossack Era, the impact of Russian and Austrian Imperial rule on Ukraine, the Pale of Settlement, the growth of national consciousness in the 19th century, the first World War, the Civil War that followed, and the quest for Ukrainian independence.

We will focus on close textual analysis of the readings over a period of nine (9) meetings, supplemented by biographical, historical, and critical information related to the writings that I will introduce at each meeting. During the sessions, several short episodes (not longer than 10 – 15 minutes each) will be shown from the films Evenings on a Farm near Dikanka (Russia, 1961), Viy (Russia, 1967 and 2014), Benya Krik directed by Vladimir Vilner (screenplay by Isaac Babel) in 1926, and from documentaries.

The class will held online via Zoom on Saturday mornings from 10:00 am to noon CT for nine (9) weeks starting on February 25, 2023 and ending on April 29, 2023.

For the complete course description, including weekly readings, click here. For the Newberry website course description, click here.

The Newberry’s Winter/Spring 2023 Adult Education schedule will be available on the Newberry’s Adult Education page starting December 19, 2022. (Scroll down to “Select a Subject” and “Start Date” and “End Date.” Enter your parameters from the dropdown menus, and click “Submit Filters” to see a list of courses.)

Online registration opens at 9:00 am CT on Wednesday, January 18, 2023. Click here to register on Learning Stream when registration opens. (If you are new to Learning Stream, you must create an account in order to register for classes. You may do this at any time before or during registration.)

For more details about registering, pricing, and member discounts, go to the Newberry’s Adult Education page and scroll to “Registration and Pricing.”