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THE NEWSLETTER >> OCTOBER, 2013 - POINTS OF CONFLICT

The SRAS Newsletter
A Resource for Students, Educators, and Anyone Curious about Eurasia
Deadline for Spring, 2014: October 31, 2013!

  Uzbek-Hat
  An SRAS student tries on a traditional Uzbek hat while in Uzbekistan. SRAS's Central Asian Studies program, based in Kyrgyzstan, includes travel to Turkmenistan, Uzbekistan, and Kazakhstan. Sign up before October 31!

Добро пожаловать!

This month, we look at current ethnic, religious, and political issues facing former Soviet states.

Contrasting articles on Chechnya and Tatarstan look at two very different semiautonomous Muslim-dominated republics in Russia – with one recovering from two recent wars and the other a fast-growing economy and a society renowned for tolerance. We look at Georgia's politics, whose 2013 elections could shift it to focus on Russia rather than exclusively the West. We look at ethnic issues in Armenia, Kyrgyzstan, Azerbaijan, and Ukraine, the sources of Moldova's continuing political crisis, and Sochi's geopolitical significance to Russia.

These are just some of the great new articles contributed by former SRAS graduates to this month's newsletter. They were commissioned by SRAS to serve as part of online textbooks we are developing for our Policy and Conflict in the Post-Soviet Space and Central Asian Studies Program and will remain free online to all readers. We would like to thank all the exceptional young talent we have worked with over the past few months. It has been a highly productive pleasure!  

Deadlines for fall semester programs are coming this month! Application deadlines fall on October 15 or 31, depending on program and location. See the individual program pages for details.

Also this month, we also have a new guide to Jewish Moscow, where Jewish life is seeing a massive revival, and a great new MiniLesson on how one might discuss Halloween in Russia (where many find the holiday and its imagery offensive). You will also find much more about Russian culture and current events in this issue. 

We hope you will find this issue interesting and informative. Share it with your friends, classmates, and colleagues if you do!

 

In this month's newsletter:

- Conflict   - Programs   -  Koroche!
- Language and Culture     - Books
Primary Documents

 

Abigail Stowe-Thurston Receives Vestnik Jury Award
The School of Russian and Asian Studies congratulates Abigail Stowe-Thurston as the recipient of the $200 Jury Award from Vestnik, The Journal of Russian and Asian Studies for our 14th issue.

Call for Papers: Vestnik!
Papers submitted for this edition of Vestnik will be eligible for a $200 Jury Award. Click here for details. Make your submissions by December 20, 2013.


 Study Abroad
in Eurasia!

Post-Soviet-Conflict-Banner
 
 Study Abroad
in Russia!

Central-Asia-Studies 
 
 Study Abroad
in Russia!

RSL-Side-Bar1 
 
SA_logo_button SRAS sponsors this new site for students, by students!
 
Art-in-Russia-buttonSRAS's new site devoted
to Russian art
. It's now redesigned and growing!
 

- Feature: Conflict -

Nagorno-Karabakh: The South Caucasus' Volatile Core
Armenia still occupies land that Azerbaijan claims after an unresolved war was fought over Nagorno-Karabakh. Today, both countries have rapidly growing militaries and rhetoric is escalating. Further, alliances between Armenia, Azerbaijan, Russia, Turkey, and the US could ignite a larger conflict. New article by SRAS graduate David Parker.

Chechnya: A Difficult Cornerstone in Russian Security
Chechnya is a predominantly Muslim region among many turbulent republics in the Russian Caucasus. Modern Russia has fought two civil wars there to ensure that the republic, which Russia views as essential to its security, remains a part of Russia. New article by SRAS graduate Christine Jacobson.

Tatarstan: Semiautonomous and Thriving
Tatarstan is a predominantly Muslim republic. Despite a turbulent history, Tatarstan is today a stable part of The Russian Federation. In fact, it is one of Russia's fastest growing and best-diversified regional economies. How has this been achieved? New article by SRAS graduate Christine Jacobson.

Crimea: Prosperity in Unity, or Separatism?
On Ukraine's Crimean Peninsula, the Ukrainians are a minority, outnumbered by ethnic Russians. It addition, Crimean Tatars are a significant minority. The peninsula once pressed for independence. Could it do so again? New article by SRAS graduate Alex Wilson.

Moldovan Politics: Major Issues and Personages
Moldovan politics are some of Europe's most complicated. Major divisions in society have thus given the country a slow and inefficient government, an erratic economy, and resultant social and infrastructural problems. Is there a way forward? New article by SRAS graduate Michael Zeller.

Georgian Politics: Major Issues and Personages
The Rose Revolution installed a fiercely pro-Western government in Georgia. However, the 2013 elections will likely solidify a new, more pro-Russian government. Will this change the geopolitics of a state centrally positioned in the turbulent Caucasus? New article by SRAS graduate Michael Zeller.

Sochi: Russia's Summer Capital
Sochi, which will host the 2014 Olympics has garnered international criticism for Russia on multiple fronts. It has also had threats made against it by terrorists based in the Caucasus, where the city itself is located and occupies a pivotal place on the land bridge linking Europe with the Near East. New article by SRAS graduate David Parker.

Osh and the Fergana Valley
The Kyrgyz city of Osh lies along the Uzbek border. In Osh, ethnic Uzbeks have long outnumbered the Kyrgyz. Long-standing and continuing animosity between the two ethnic groups has resulted in several violent clashes over the past decades. New article by SRAS graduate Alex Wilson.


- Programs - 

Central Asian Studies
Central Asian Studies is an innovative program that combines intensive language study, courses on regional history, homestay with local families, and regional travel. All this is focused on giving students a wide and local view of Central Asia's diverse cultures, significant problems, and geopolitical significance.

Policy and Conflict in the Post-Soviet Space
Students will critically consider the modern problems of governance that face multiethnic states. Students will search for pragmatic solutions using the experience they gain on the ground in Ukraine, Moldova, Georgia, and Russia.

Funding for Study in Russia, Ukraine, and Kyrgyzstan
The following is a list of every scholarship, aid, and grant program that we know of that can help fund study abroad to Russia.

SRAS at ASEEES National Convention 2013
SRAS will be out in full force at ASEEES National Convention in Boston from Thursday, November 21 to Sunday, November 24! SRAS Director Renee Stillings, University Relations Coordinator Lisa Horner, and SRAS Assistant Director Josh Wilson will all be in attendance. Make sure to stop by our booth to say hello, ask questions or give feedback about our programs or online publications. We'll be glad to meet you!

- SRAS Program Search Engine
- SRAS in Russia Videos - Choose your location!
- Russian: difficult to learn as they say?
- Translators Are a Waste of Space


- Kороче -

Top 5 Movies in Russia
SRAS Recap of Russian TV News
SRAS Students Abroad: Food and Culture

Note: Nashe Radio is currently updating their site and lineup. We hope to return our Nashe Radio feature or a similar musical feature soon. Our "Russian Cultural Events in the US" listing is expected later at ArtinRussia.org.


- Language and Culture -

Russian Mini-Lesson: Halloween as a Cultural Rift
Every culture is different, and what is acceptable or even fun in one culture can seem вульгарный (vulgar) and оскорбительный (offensive) in another - like Halloween.

A Guide to Jewish Moscow
Jewish life today in Russia is flourishing, and Moscow lies at the center of this renaissance. Check it out during your time here and be pleasantly surprised. Guide by SRAS graduate Jacob Kaufman.

If Holden Caulfield Spoke Russian
If Holden Caulfield spoke Russian, what would he sound like? The answers are central to the debate over translating “The Catcher in the Rye.” More important, such a question touches on the nature of translation as a practice and as a product, one we consume daily without much consideration of its intricacies.

Vast Soviet Musical Stockpile to be Dumped on iTunes
750 titles from iconic Russian record label Melodiya are to be made available exclusively on iTunes.

- How to Understand the Deep Structures of Language
- The Language Shift - leaving the US behind? 


 Never Too Many Books!

strategic_cooperation Strategic Cooperation: Overcoming the Barriers of Global Anarchy

what every Russian knows What Every Russian Knows (and You Don't)

red nations Red Nations: The Nationalities Experience in and after the USSR


Study Abroad
in Russia!

EviroStudies2

- Primary Docs and Other Cool Stuff -

Inclusion of Children with Disabilities in Central Asia
A free excerpt from the recently published book.

Poll: Sexual Orientation, Ethnicity in Russian Identity
Besides drunks, who do Russians not want most as neighbors or work colleagues? The answer: homosexuals, according to new research examining national identity released by a state-run pollster, the Russia Public Opinion Research Center, on Tuesday.

Russia Has World's 2nd Largest Number of Immigrants
Russia hosts the world’s largest population of immigrants after the United States, according to a new UN study showing that the number of people living abroad across the globe has reached a record high.  

Russian Analytical Digest: Navalny & Moscow Elections
This issue of the RAD analyzes the Moscow mayoral elections held on September 8, 2013. The first article examines the innovative techniques opposition challenger Alexey Navalny employed in his campaign. The second focuses on the unusual way that the authorities supported Navalny’s ability to participate in the elections. 

A Plea for Caution from Russia
What Putin has to say to Americans about Syria. (Op-Ed in the NY Times.)

Demonizing Putin Endangers America's Security
Putin-bashing on the left and the right must stop in the interest of US national security - an argument by Russian scholar Steven Cohen.

Putin has Revived Russian Exceptionalism
A response to Putin's Op-Ed in the NY Times.

Putin at the Meeting of the Valdai International Discussion Club
Vladimir Putin took part in the final plenary meeting of the Valdai International Discussion Club. The theme of the club’s anniversary session is Russia’s Diversity for the Modern World. He speaks on several issues of international and domestic importance to Russia in this recent speech.

Dmitry Medvedev's Approval Rate Has Sharply Diverged From Vladimir Putin's
The Levada Center, Russia’s most respected independent polling group, just updated their tracking poll with information from September. While Putin’s rating has been essentially flat for nearly two years (his approval was 63% in December 2011 and is 64% now) Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev’s rating has continued to decline. In late 2013, Medvedev’s approval is at an all time low and is, even more shockingly, below the 50% barrier.


SRAS Travel
Services for Scholars
SRAS Travel Services - Russia Your Way

 

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