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Tolstoy and the Meaning of Life
/ COMP 306
This course examines the works of the great Russian writer Lev Tolstoy, whose stories and novels represent a life-long quest to uncover the meaning of life. Readings include Tolstoy’s two major novels, War and Peace and Anna Karenina, as well as several shorter works, such as The Death of Ivan Ilych and Hadji Murad. We will also examine Tolstoy’s aesthetic and didactic writing so that we understand precisely how Tolstoy answers life’s most troubling questions, as well as what role artistic representation plays in these answers. All readings will be in English.
Format: seminar; some lecturing
Grading: yes pass/fail option,
yes fifth course option
timely completion of all reading assignments, active class participation, three short papers, and a final research project
This course is cross-listed and the prefixes carry the following divisional credit:
GBST Russian + Eurasian Studies Electives