HIS325:  Imperial Russia

Winter 2014                                                   2-4 T, SS 2105

Dr. Alison K. Smith                                       email:  alison.smith@utoronto.ca
Office: Munk 124N                                       webpage:  http://individual.utoronto.ca/aksmith
Office hours: M 2-4                                  

Course Description:
This course focuses on Russia's history during a period of remarkable change and turbulence, when the country more firmly established its far-flung empire while attempting to define itself as a nation.  From the wars and reforms of Peter the Great through the end of the empire during the First World War, the course touches on questions of social and cultural change, and the political events that allowed or constrained them. Furthermore, it examines the ways that the concept of “Imperial Russia”—and of Russia itself—developed in the writings of contemporary and more recent historians and authors. 

(1)  two 5-7 page essay papers (25% each)
(2)  one final exam (35%)
(3)  class participation (15 %) (includes regular participation via index cards; see here for more information)

Be warned that plagiarism is a serious offense.  Read the university’s policies on academic dishonesty, located at http://www.governingcouncil.utoronto.ca/policies/behaveac.htm.  In this course, plagiarism (ask if you’re confused about what that means) can lead to failure, not on a single paper, but for the class as a whole.

For more information on avoiding plagiarism, see in particular the University’s information on “how not to plagiarize” at” http://www.writing.utoronto.ca/advice/using-sources/how-not-to-plagiarize.

Furthermore, students agree that by taking this course all required papers may be subject to submission for textual similarity review to Turnitin.com for the detection of plagiarism. All submitted papers will be included as source documents in the Turnitin.com reference database solely for the purpose of detecting plagiarism of such papers. The terms that apply to the University’s use of the Turnitin.com service are described on the Turnitin.com website.

Unexcused late papers or missed exams are also not acceptable.  If you find yourself in dire straits, or anticipate a conflict, discuss the matter with me ahead of time.  The night before something is due is not ahead of time.  Do not simply fail to turn in a paper and assume I’ll accept something late. 

The penalty for late work I have been informed about is three percentage points per day.

One final note:  please, when sending me an email, include “HIS325” in the subject line.

Required Texts:
available at University Bookstore:
Alexander Pushkin, The Captain’s Daughter: And Other Stories
Olga Semyonova Tian-Shanskaia, Village Life in Late Tsarist Russia
Lev Tolstoy, Sevastopol Sketches
Ivan Turgenev, Fathers and Sons

available online through library catalog:
Sheila Fitzpatrick, The Russian Revolution
Abbot Gleason, editor, A Companion to Russian History
Dominic Lieven, editor, The Cambridge History of Russia, vol. 2 (see individual links below)
Thomas Riha, Readings in Russian Civilization, vol. 2

Schedule of assignments/topics:
Part I:  Power
January 7:      Introduction

January 14:    Autocrats

January 21:    Reformers

January 28:    War and Empire

Part II: People
February 4:    Lords and Serfs

First essay due electronically, 5pm Friday February 7

February 11:  Serfs to Peasants

February 25:  Women and Men

March 4:  Soslovie and Class

Part III: Ideas
March 11:     What is Russia?

March 18:     Who Is Guilty?

Second essay due electronically, 5pm Friday, March 21

March 25:  What is to be Done?

April 1: Revolution