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Regular version of the site

HSE Brings the Whole Wide World Together

On June 4, 2017, the annual festival ‘The Whole World at HSE’ took place in the courtyard of the HSE building on Shabolovka Street. In our photo report, we present lectures, workshops, Armenian dances, Mongolian sweets, the nardi game from Azerbaijan, and many other things that people saw at the festival.

Students from over 20 countries study at HSE. Therefore, ‘The Whole World at HSE’ festival turned out to be a truly global event. For instance, at the International Quarter, festival guests could talk with international students who spoke about their countries’ history, holidays and traditions, as well as shared their national delicacies and sweets.

Everyone interested could take part in language workshops and learn more about the Armenian language and Hebrew, or even practice Arabic calligraphy. For those who like solving puzzles, Ingroup STS prepared a quest. And, according to the organizers, barely any of the competitors could pass it!

Visitors were also able to rest from intellectual work and join one of the dancing workshops in the courtyard where they could learn an Armenian or an Uzbek dance accompanied by a folk orchestra.

One of the festival’s venues was dedicated to travel. For instance, Kolya Serga, presenter on the ‘Orel&Reshka’ TV show, Andrey Ponkratov, journalist at ‘Moya Planeta’ TV channel, and Maria Grigorieva, editor of SelfMadeTrip magazine, shared their professional secrets and travel experiences.

HSE teachers didn’t stay on the sidelines and also took part in the festival. As part of the World Arts venue, they delivered lectures on varied topics, including poetry, Japanese architecture, and even Russian hip hop.

Alexander Piperski, Research Fellow at the HSE School of Philology, presented the lecture ‘How Poems Work in Various Languages’, which was on how to distinguish poems from non-poems.


Furthermore, teams of four people could take part in the Claustrophobia Quest, organized by Ingroup STS. They had 20 minutes to get out of a room by giving the right answers to 10 questions related to exams and life at HSE.

Maria Grigorieva, editor of SelfMadeTrip magazine, shared some useful tips, as well as spoke about how one can save while travelling around Europe (e.g., using food sharing projects).

Kolya Serga, presenter from the ‘Orel&Reshka’ TV show, spoke about his numerous trips around the globe and answered some questions about how the show is made.



The HSE Armenian Club offered a master class in Armenian. There, participants learned about the basics of the language, accentuation and word order, and got to try out a few key phrases. For example, if your friend has passed exams successfully, you can congratulate them by saying ‘achkt luis’.

View of the International Quarter.

HSE students greeted visitors at the entrance and told them about the festival programme and upcoming lectures.

Master class in Hebrew. Contemporary Hebrew doesn’t really resemble the language of older religious texts, since it is a reconstructed language. It was reconstructed in the late 19th century, when people started talking about the revival of Israel, and no one really knew what language might be spoken there. Then, Hebrew was only used in religious texts, and people could only say something like ‘And Moses came down mount Sinai’, but not ‘Hey, Moshe, go take the trash out’.

Yulia Pasko, Associate Professor at the HSE Department of German, held a quiz on German culture and geography. ‘German is a beautiful language, and it’s a pure pleasure to learn it,’ she says.

A French Language and Culture Club is now open at the HSE Department of French. It brings together not only students, but all French speakers and lovers of the language. The club also organizes a lot of events, holidays and meetings, where everyone is welcome.


Mongolian students are now studying at the Faculty of Law: ‘It’s great that many students from other countries study at HSE. It was difficult at first, since there is a language barrier. But now we’ve got used to it, and have no problem talking to Russian students’. They offered visitors some Mongolian sweets, and shared a recipe for salted tea with milk.



Shagai Naadan, a traditional Mongolian bones game, which is on the UNESCO list of non-material cultural heritage.

Students from Myanmar treated guests to some sweets, as well as displayed their national male costume - a male skirt that is worn for official events.

The Ingush and Chechen Republics were located next to each other at the festival. 

A dechig pondar is a wooden folk instrument that sounds much like a guitar. It is very old and was inherited from generation to generation.

Chechen dance workshop.


North Ossetian stand.

Mehendi workshop.

Lecture - ‘Russian Hip Hop: Appropriation Strategies’. Artem Rondarev, Lecturer at the HSE School of Cultural Studies, spoke about how music that grew out of the South Bronx has become popular around the entire world.


‘As everybody knows, there are a lot of Armenians in Moscow. There are Armenian taxi drivers, as well as many construction subcontractors. HSE attracts outstanding and well-educated people, and it’s always thrilling to be among interesting people of your own nationality. The HSE Armenian Club is probably the only Armenian community in Moscow, which is both very active and with the right ideas,’ said Olgert Dallakyan, student at the Moscow Technological University.

Armenian dance workshop.

International mafia game.

Painting zone.

In the Extreme Sports Club zone, visitors could try their hand at riding skateboard, a longboard, roller skates, and a relay, or even try out a surf exercise machine and win some prizes. Furthermore, HSE’s international students are also very active in the club, as they come to tourist rallies. Moreover, last year, two visiting French students even climbed Mount Elbrus.








An Azerbaijan dance workshop held by a Karabakh group turned out to be the most popular event at the festival.


Today, 10 students from Japan now study at HSE as part of an exchange programme. ‘I like Moscow, especially when it’s a little warmer there,’ one student said.


Andrey Ponkratov, journalist and TV presenter (for the ‘Moya Planeta’ channel) not only brings back magnets or plates from his trips, but also canes. It was an impulse purchase at first, but this habit has grown to a really impressive collection! 


For more photos from the festival please click here.

See also:

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