SRAS is offering a new program that will take students to both Havana, Cuba and St. Petersburg, Russia. Click here for details.
SRAS has new summer programs in Cuba and Georgia. The Russian-Cuban Connection will examine history, identity formation, culture, diplomacy, and language on the ground in Cuba and St. Petersburg, Russia. Coexistence and Religion will examine history, religion, and tolerance in Georgia.
In this month's newsletter, we've focused on holiday resources. You will find holiday books and movies as well as histories of Russia's Christmas / New Year tree and the unique ornaments from Russia and the USSR. You will also find our regular instalments of culture, language, and a sampling of some of the most informative articles we've read this month on Russian public sentiment, economic data, and political analysis.
The coming New Year promises to bring us a very different world. Political climates across the globe are rapidly changing and just how foreign policies, domestic agendas, and world economies will be affected is still far from clear. SRAS plans to keep doing what it does best – providing innovative educational programs and sources of curated, reliable news and thoughtful analysis. We hope you will join us in continuing to better understand the changing world around us.
If you have any questions about any issue affecting study abroad in Russia, Ukraine, Kyrgyzstan, or Poland, please let us know! We hope to see you abroad soon!
In this month's newsletter:
- Holiday Histories and Entertainment - Programs
- Books - Articles - Koroche!
Call for Papers: Vestnik - Deadline: Dec 30!
Students who submit papers for this edition of Vestnik will be eligible for a $200 Jury Award. Click here for details. Make your submissions by Dec 30, 2016.
– Holiday Histories and Entertainment –
Моя Россия: Russia's Christmas/New Year Tree
Learn about the history of the yolka, Russia's Christmas/New Year Tree in this latest installment of Moya Rossiya, a free series of intermediate/advanced Russian language lessons.
Ghosts of Holidays Past
Discover the history of Russian and Soviet tree ornaments - and an American collector working to preserve them.
Yolki - Full Film Online
One of Russia's best contemporary holiday classics - Yolki - has been published (legally) on YouTube. It's free to watch, although there are no subtitles. It's a comedy that shows that everyone is connected and can come together to help each other.
More Russian Film Resources
Here are a few other resources you might check out for more Russian modern and classic movies, cutting-edge bands and language practice!
15 Soviet Cartoons to Put You in the Holiday Spirit
When considering Russia’s holiday’s traditions, it is important to remember that, for Russians, the holiday season really means one extraordinary holiday: New Year’s Eve.
Yolka / Ёлка
Yolka (Ёлка in Russian) is a Ukrainian pop star, actress, and television personality who sings in Russian. Her name means "fir tree" or "Christmas tree."
SRAS Student Joins Kyrgyz Jui-Juitsu Club
Teachers: Curriculum Development Grants
Russians Rediscover their Jewish Identity
Is Russian Anti-Semitism on Decline?
Russian Craft Beer Takes Off
– Programs –
Coexistence and Religion
We will learn to reflect upon and better understand religious traditions, issues, questions, and values in Georgia, thereby enhancing and expanding our understanding of how religion and spirituality shape our own lives.
The Cuban-Russian Connection
The Cuban-Russian Connection will spend one week experiencing Cuba in tradition and transition and then move to three weeks of course work and excursions in St. Petersburg, Russia.
Policy and Conflict in the Post-Soviet Space
Visit multiple former Soviet states to discuss the conflicts there, both past and present, with local students, teachers, and experts.
Central Asian Studies
Visit Kyrgyzstan, Kazakhstan, Uzbekistan, and Turkmenistan while studying the culture, history, economies, and more of this diverse and geopolitically important region.
Russian as a Second Language
Intensive Russian courses for all levels in locations across Russia and Eurasia.
Our internship page has been updated with new information detailing possible placements open in Kiev, Bishkek, and Warsaw. Internship options are available in Warsaw with no Polish language requirement.
Security and Society in the Information Age
Spend this summer looking at important global issues from the vantage of Poland/Central Europe. This region serves as a fascinating case study in courses on security (including cyber), criminal justice, urban planning, elites and politics, entrepreneurship and innovation, and more.
View ALL 15 Summer Semester Programs!
Home and Abroad: $10,000 For Your Study Abroad
Braver Grants: Get More From Your Study Abroad
Title VIII Research Scholar Program
Cohen–Tucker Dissertation Research Fellowship
– Koroche! –
Nashe Radio's Top 5
Top Movies in Russia
Russkoe Radio Top 5
Poland’s Top Pop Music
Russian Foreign Affairs in the News
How the News is Reported in Russia
– Articles –
Russia’s Economic Development Minister Faces Corruption Allegations
Many analysts say the case shows tension at the top of Putin’s government between liberal (Ulyukayev) and conservative (Igor Sechin, head of Rosneft) factions.
Experts Puzzled by Bribery Charges against Economy Minister Ulyukayev
Economic Development Minister Alexei Ulyukayev has been accused of extorting $2 million for a deal between oil companies Rosneft and Bashneft.
Head of Russian Postal Service Investigated Over Massive Illegal Bonus
The Russian Postal Service announced that Dmitry Strashnov had been awarded a bonus of 95 million rubles. Strashnov's salary, taking into account state secrets and not including holiday pay, is officially set at 460,500 rubles a month ($85,000 a year).
More Officials Detained in Nationwide Anti-corruption Drive
The Federal Security Service has arrested two deputies to the governor of central Russia’s Kemerovo Region, Aleksey Ivanov and Aleksandr Danilchenko, on charges of extorting a 51-percent stake in a coal mining company from a local businessman.
Putin Appoints New Russian Economy Mnister
The new minister was born in 1982 in Moscow. He graduated from one of Russia’s leading institutes – the Higher School of Economics – in 2004 and worked in several major banks, both Russian- and foreign-owned.
Levada Center Loses Court Bid
A district court in Moscow has rejected a lawsuit by NGO the Levada Center, which had sought to cancel its inclusion in the register of ‘foreign agents’ – groups engaged in politics that receive sponsorship from foreign organizations and individuals.
Russia Blocks LinkedIn After Court Ruling
LinkedIn, which will soon be bought by Microsoft, is to be blocked in Russia after a local court ruled on Thursday that it had breached the country’s data protection rules.
How Russian State Patriotism Destroyed the Far Right
The Kremlin's intervention in the Ukraine conflict has fragmented Russian nationalist groups.
Inside Russia’s Beleaguered Vocational Education Sector
How are Russia's ongoing major educational reforms affecting its vocational colleges?
No Major Impact of Import Substitution - World Bank
According to the World Bank, over recent years, Russia has accomplished many positive changes across multiple areas of business regulation, helping improve its investment climate.
Russia’s Boom (Farming) Economy
The Kremlin claims it has won the sanctions war with the West — and points to the good news coming out of its agriculture sector. It is half right.
Cheapest Labor Since Tsars Ruled Russia a Draw for Samsung, Ikea
Made in Russia and coming soon to a store shelf near you: washing machines, chewing gum and possibly much else.
Big Western Companies Are Pumping Cash Into Russia
Big retailers like Sweden’s Ikea Group and France’s Leroy Merlin SA have begun pumping billions of dollars in new stores and factories, counting on Russia’s consumers to start emerging from hibernation after two years of recession.
Smaller Decline In Russian Economy Suggests Recession Is Waning
The Russian central bank said on November 14 that it expected the economy to return to meager growth of between 0.2 to 0.3 percent in the fourth quarter.
Russian Social Stratification Widens
According to official forecasts, the welfare of the population will recover only in 2018 – at the same time, the authorities will seriously start thinking about raising the retirement age and taxes.
Russia Sees Oil Markets Woes For Another 3 Years
Chairperson of Russia’s Central Bank Elvira Nabiullina said on Monday the probability of another drastic collapse in oil prices is low, though recovery won’t be substantially above current rates.
Russia May Loosen Purse Strings for Election
Wage increases for public sector workers and military personnel, to ensure they turn out to vote for the Kremlin's candidate, could be a particular threat to budget targets.
Net Capital Outflow from Russia Drops Significantly
Net capital outflow from Russia in the period of January-October 2016 declined to only $10.4 billion.
"Happiness Gap” Between Post-Soviet Countries and West Has Finally Closed
Transitioning from a centrally-controlled economy to one based on market forces was meant, ultimately, to improve the quality of life for people living in the former Soviet Union. And it did. It just took a really, really long time.
Half of Russians at Risk of Poverty, Says World Bank
Some 21.4 million people — or 14.6 percent of the population — fell below Russia's national poverty line in the first half of 2016.
Putin Approval Rating at 4-year High of 86%
Only 14% said they disapproved of the president and 1% were not sure.
Two-thirds of Russians want Putin to Remain President after 2018
The Levada independent research center reported on Tuesday that in October this year the share of Russians who said that they would prefer Putin to remain president for another term was 63 percent.
If you have views or material you would like to contribute to the newsletter, please contact us.
Want the newsletter?