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Regular version of the site
Bachelor 2019/2020

Historical Vocabulary in English

Type: Compulsory course (History)
Area of studies: History
Delivered by: School of History
When: 2 year, 1, 2 module
Mode of studies: Blended
Language: English
ECTS credits: 3

Course Syllabus


This course explores the difficulties Russian-speaking researchers are usually faced with when reading historical texts in English. The main goal of the course “Historical Vocabulary in English” is to develop the students' ability to understand and interpret secondary sources in English. We will work primarily with books, articles, and other materials related to Medieval, Modern and Soviet History, focusing on the most crucial historiographical issues. The course will be held in English, and the students will be required to both speak English in class and complete an occasional written assignment in English. However, the developing of language skills in itself is not the primary goal of the course. Imperfect grammar or pronunciation will be far less important for successfully completing the course than the ability to understand, interpret, and discuss the texts.
Learning Objectives

Learning Objectives

  • to develop the students’ skills of close reading, critical evaluation, and analysis of relevant secondary literature
  • to improve the students’ academic English skills and the ability to apply these skills to their individual research and presentations
  • to gain knowledge of important political events, systems, and persons from Medieval, Modern, or Soviet periods
  • to get acquainted with research tools for exploring topics of Medieval, Modern, or Soviet history, and get the ability to use them in their own research fields
  • to gain knowledge of the main historiographical trends in the history of the Middle Ages, Modern Times, or Soviet Period
Expected Learning Outcomes

Expected Learning Outcomes

  • to read and analyze secondary literature in English
  • to discuss texts in English with other students
  • to understand written, as well as spoken academic English
  • to analyze historiographical trends of Medieval, Modern, or Soviet History
Course Contents

Course Contents

  • Part I
    Social and political history of the Soviet Union
  • Part II
    Economic and Social History of the Middle Ages and Modern Times
  • Part III
    Kingship and Dynastic Cults in the Later Middle Ages
Assessment Elements

Assessment Elements

  • non-blocking Active participation in class discussions
  • non-blocking Written assignment (between 1000 and 3000 words) in English
  • non-blocking 3 quizzes during the course
  • non-blocking Online-course
Interim Assessment

Interim Assessment

  • Interim assessment (2 module)
    0.2 * 3 quizzes during the course + 0.3 * Active participation in class discussions + 0.2 * Online-course + 0.3 * Written assignment (between 1000 and 3000 words) in English


Recommended Core Bibliography

  • Alexopoulos, G. (2017). Illness and Inhumanity in Stalin’s Gulag. New Haven: Yale University Press. Retrieved from http://search.ebscohost.com/login.aspx?direct=true&site=eds-live&db=edsebk&AN=1494426
  • Allen, R. C. (2009). The British Industrial Revolution in Global Perspective. Cambridge University Press. Retrieved from http://search.ebscohost.com/login.aspx?direct=true&site=eds-live&db=edsrep&AN=edsrep.b.cup.cbooks.9780521687850
  • Antonsson, H. (2007). St. Magnús of Orkney : A Scandinavian Martyr-cult in Context. Leiden: Brill. Retrieved from http://search.ebscohost.com/login.aspx?direct=true&site=eds-live&db=edsebk&AN=252698
  • Arrighi, G. (DE-588)1145347711, (DE-576)160108292. (1994). The long twentieth century : money, power and the origins of our times / Giovanni Arrighi. London [u.a.]: Verso. Retrieved from http://search.ebscohost.com/login.aspx?direct=true&site=eds-live&db=edswao&AN=edswao.043589634
  • Bernstein, S. (2017). Raised Under Stalin : Young Communists and the Defense of Socialism. Ithaca: Cornell University Press. Retrieved from http://search.ebscohost.com/login.aspx?direct=true&site=eds-live&db=edsebk&AN=1610612
  • Bloch, M. (2015). The Royal Touch (Routledge Revivals) : Sacred Monarchy and Scrofula in England and France. Abingdon, Oxon: Routledge. Retrieved from http://search.ebscohost.com/login.aspx?direct=true&site=eds-live&db=edsebk&AN=958651
  • Brenner, R. (1976). Agrarian Class Structure and Economic Development in Pre-Industrial Europe. Retrieved from http://search.ebscohost.com/login.aspx?direct=true&site=eds-live&db=edsbas&AN=edsbas.27017BB7
  • Elliott, D. (2004). Proving Woman : Female Spirituality and Inquisitional Culture in the Later Middle Ages. Princeton, N.J.: Princeton University Press. Retrieved from http://search.ebscohost.com/login.aspx?direct=true&site=eds-live&db=edsebk&AN=295521
  • Fitzpatrick, S. (1993). Ascribing class: The construction of social identity in Soviet Russia. Journal of Modern History, 65(4), 745. https://doi.org/10.1086/244724
  • Fitzpatrick, S. (2007). Revisionism in Soviet History. History & Theory, 46(4), 77–91. https://doi.org/10.1111/j.1468-2303.2007.00429.x
  • Ghosh, S. (2015). The “Great Divergence,” Politics, and Capitalism. Journal of Early Modern History, 19(1), 1–43. https://doi.org/10.1163/15700658-12342421
  • Graeber, D. (DE-588)136471862, (DE-576)363160973. (2014). Debt : the first 5,000 years / David Graeber. Brooklyn, NY [u.a.]: Melville House. Retrieved from http://search.ebscohost.com/login.aspx?direct=true&site=eds-live&db=edswao&AN=edswao.428144357
  • Gregory, P. R., & Hoover Institution on War, R. and P. (2009). Terror by Quota : State Security From Lenin to Stalin: (an Archival Study). New Haven [Conn.]: Yale University Press. Retrieved from http://search.ebscohost.com/login.aspx?direct=true&site=eds-live&db=edsebk&AN=278432
  • Harvest of Despair: Life and Death in Ukraine under Nazi Rule. (2004). Belknap Press of Harvard University Press. Retrieved from http://search.ebscohost.com/login.aspx?direct=true&site=eds-live&db=edsnar&AN=edsnar.oai.pure.knaw.nl.publications.959506bb.5ba4.4792.a2ed.b959ac085309
  • Karl Loewenstein. (2006). Re-emergence of public opinion in the Soviet Union: Khrushchev and responses to the secret speech. Europe-Asia Studies, (8), 1329. https://doi.org/10.1080/09668130600996572
  • Kelly, S. (2003). The New Solomon : Robert of Naples (1309-1343) and Fourteenth-century Kingship. Leiden: Brill. Retrieved from http://search.ebscohost.com/login.aspx?direct=true&site=eds-live&db=edsebk&AN=132911
  • Kotkin, S. (1997). Magnetic Mountain : Stalinism As a Civilization (Vol. [Pbk. ed., 1997]). Berkeley, Calif: University of California Press. Retrieved from http://search.ebscohost.com/login.aspx?direct=true&site=eds-live&db=edsebk&AN=21251
  • Mell, J. (2017). The Myth of the Medieval Jewish Moneylender : Volume I. New York: Palgrave Macmillan. Retrieved from http://search.ebscohost.com/login.aspx?direct=true&site=eds-live&db=edsebk&AN=1615566
  • North, D. C., & Weingast, B. R. (1989). Constitutions and Commitment: The Evolution of Institutions Governing Public Choice in Seventeenth-Century England. The Journal of Economic History, (04), 803. Retrieved from http://search.ebscohost.com/login.aspx?direct=true&site=eds-live&db=edsrep&AN=edsrep.a.cup.jechis.v49y1989i04p803.832.00
  • SMITH, S. A. (2015). The Historiography of the Russian Revolution 100 Years On. Kritika: Explorations in Russian & Eurasian History, 16(4), 733–749. https://doi.org/10.1353/kri.2015.0065
  • Suny, R. G. (1983). Toward a Social History of the October Revolution. Retrieved from http://search.ebscohost.com/login.aspx?direct=true&site=eds-live&db=edsbas&AN=edsbas.9E2FA832
  • Thompson, E. P. (1971). The Moral Economy of the English Crowd in the Eighteenth Century. Retrieved from http://search.ebscohost.com/login.aspx?direct=true&site=eds-live&db=edsbas&AN=edsbas.3D910AAF
  • Viola, L. (2017). Stalinist Perpetrators on Trial : Scenes From the Great Terror in Soviet Ukraine. New York, NY, United States of America: Oxford University Press. Retrieved from http://search.ebscohost.com/login.aspx?direct=true&site=eds-live&db=edsebk&AN=1607801
  • Weiner, A. (2002). Making Sense of War : The Second World War and the Fate of the Bolshevik Revolution. Princeton, N.J.: Princeton University Press. Retrieved from http://search.ebscohost.com/login.aspx?direct=true&site=eds-live&db=edsebk&AN=430829
  • Wickham, C. (2008). Productive Forces and the Economic Logic of the Feudal Mode of Production. Historical Materialism, 16(2), 3–22. https://doi.org/10.1163/156920608X296051
  • Wickham, C. (2015). Sleepwalking Into a New World : The Emergence of Italian City Communes in the Twelfth Century. Princeton, NJ: Princeton University Press. Retrieved from http://search.ebscohost.com/login.aspx?direct=true&site=eds-live&db=edsebk&AN=883277
  • Zupka, D. (2016). Ritual and Symbolic Communication in Medieval Hungary Under the Árpád Dynasty (1000-1301). Leiden: Brill. Retrieved from http://search.ebscohost.com/login.aspx?direct=true&site=eds-live&db=edsebk&AN=1368118

Recommended Additional Bibliography

  • Acemoglu, D., & Robinson, J. A. (2012). Why Nations Fail : The Origins of Power, Prosperity, and Poverty (Vol. 1st ed). New York: Currency. Retrieved from http://search.ebscohost.com/login.aspx?direct=true&site=eds-live&db=edsebk&AN=590177
  • Ghosh, S. (2016). Rural Economies and Transitions to Capitalism: Germany and England Compared ( c.1200- c.1800). Journal of Agrarian Change, 16(2), 255–290. https://doi.org/10.1111/joac.12096
  • KHLEVNIUK, O. (2015). The Gulag and the Non-Gulag as One Interrelated Whole. Kritika: Explorations in Russian & Eurasian History, 16(3), 479–498. https://doi.org/10.1353/kri.2015.0043
  • Lower, W., & United States Holocaust Memorial Museum. (2005). Nazi Empire-Building and the Holocaust in Ukraine. Chapel Hill: The University of North Carolina Press. Retrieved from http://search.ebscohost.com/login.aspx?direct=true&site=eds-live&db=edsebk&AN=158314
  • Mokyr, J. (1992). The Lever of Riches: Technological Creativity and Economic Progress. Oxford University Press. Retrieved from http://search.ebscohost.com/login.aspx?direct=true&site=eds-live&db=edsrep&AN=edsrep.b.oxp.obooks.9780195074772
  • NOVIKOVA, L. (2015). The Russian Revolution from a Provincial Perspective. Kritika: Explorations in Russian & Eurasian History, 16(4), 769–785. https://doi.org/10.1353/kri.2015.0050
  • Novikova, L., & Bernstein, S. (2018). An Anti-Bolshevik Alternative : The White Movement and the Civil War in the Russian North. Madison, Wisconsin: University of Wisconsin Press. Retrieved from http://search.ebscohost.com/login.aspx?direct=true&site=eds-live&db=edsebk&AN=1817575
  • Oleg Khlevniuk. (2018). Stalin’s War Cabinet: ‘Normalisation’ and Political Dynamics of the Dictatorship. Europe-Asia Studies, (7), 1019. https://doi.org/10.1080/09668136.2018.1489045
  • Smolkin, V. (2018). A Sacred Space Is Never Empty : A History of Soviet Atheism. Princeton, New Jersey: Princeton University Press. Retrieved from http://search.ebscohost.com/login.aspx?direct=true&site=eds-live&db=edsebk&AN=1679019
  • Steinberg, M. D. (2016). The Russian Revolution, 1905-1921. Oxford: OUP Oxford. Retrieved from http://search.ebscohost.com/login.aspx?direct=true&site=eds-live&db=edsebk&AN=1433521