Majoring in Slavic Studies


As a Slavic studies major, you explore the environmental policy, film, theater, literature and linguistics of the contemporary cultures of eastern and central Europe and Eurasia. You also study the historical relations between Slavic and non-Slavic peoples. You develop advanced-level proficiency in the Russian language through our four-year program and use Skype, study away and iPods to further your studies. Your global perspective and critical-thinking skills provide a solid foundation for careers in many fields, including international law, journalism, business, education, publishing, literary translation and environmental protection.

Language study

You have plenty of opportunities to use your Russian, with trips to Brighton Beach, the Russian banya (public bath) in Manhattan, and the Russian theater, opera and ballet. You can teach Russian to children at New London's Regional Multicultural Magnet School and practice at the Knowlton Dining Hall Russian table. To help you learn, we give you an iPod or iPad loaded with language-learning apps as well as music videos, folk songs, Soviet-era cartoons, talk shows, films, nursery rhymes, audiobooks and newscasts. On campus, you may be paired with a student from the St. Petersburg School of Economic for language practice and cultural exchange.

International opportunities and study abroad

Most students study in Russia their junior year. You can also intern abroad to gain professional experience and further improve your language skills.

What can you do with a majorcertificate in Slavic Studies?

Here are some of the positions our graduates have gone on to hold:

  • Foreign Service Officer, U.S. Department of State
  • Head of Russian Investor Relations, M:Communications
  • Director, American Bar Association
  • Associate Director of International and Graduate Admission, Drake University
  • Assistant Professor of History, Oberlin College
  • Administrator, MAP International LLC
  • Account Manager for Global Performance Solutions, Cartus LLC
  • Ph.D. Candidate in Linguistic Anthropology, Oxford University
  • Research Analyst, U.S. National Security Agency
  • Appraiser, Perrywinkle's Fine Jewelry
  • Diplomatic Corps, U.S. Department of State in Moscow
  • Senior Account Executive, Visa Inc.
  • General Manager, Sodexo USA
  • Geologist, Shell International Exploration & Production
  • Field Organizer, Universal Health Care Foundation of Connecticut
  • History Teacher, Sojourn Academy
  • Equity Analyst, PricewaterhouseCoopers


Marijian Despalatovic, Senior Lecturer Emeritus Marijian Despalatovic, Senior Lecturer Emeritus

Marijian Despalatovic, Senior Lecturer Emeritus
Russian language and literature • Chekhov • Dostoevsky • Semiotics • Marxism

Petko Ivanov, Lecturer in Slavic Studies Petko Ivanov, Lecturer in Slavic Studies

Petko Ivanov, Lecturer in Slavic Studies
Cultural history of the Slavs • History of Slavistics • Linguistic anthropology • Second language acquisition • Nationalism • Ethnography of religion • Polish and Balkan studies

Andrea D. Lanoux, Associate Professor of Slavic Studies, Chair of Slavic Studies Department Andrea D. Lanoux, Associate Professor of Slavic Studies, Chair of Slavic Studies Department

Andrea D. Lanoux, Associate Professor of Slavic Studies, Chair of Slavic Studies Department
Russian and Polish languages and literatures • Gender studies in Slavic cultures • Nationhood and nationalism studies • Literary canon formation • Post-Soviet children's literature

Tony Lin, C3 Postdoctoral Fellow, Slavic Studies Tony Lin, C3 Postdoctoral Fellow, Slavic Studies

Tony Lin, C3 Postdoctoral Fellow, Slavic Studies
Russian literature and music of the 19th and 20th centuries • Polish literature from Mickiewicz and beyond • Fryderyk Chopin in Polish and Russian culture • Transposition/Intermediality studies (relationship between literature and other art forms) • Theater of the Absurd

Student profile

Jyoti Arvey Jyoti Arvey

Slavic studies

Q: What drew you to Slavic studies?
A: I decided to take Russian my freshman year on a whim and ended up falling in love with the language. Our class spent spring break in Moscow and St. Petersburg. I felt very much at home in St. Petersburg and I knew that I had to learn as much as I could about the country and the people.

Q: Did you study abroad?
A: I went back to St. Petersburg. I had an extraordinary experience with a loving host mom and sister, a great group of American students and a really interesting and vibrant Russian student body. I also received a scholarship from the U.S. Department of State to intensively study language for two months in Ufa, Russia.

Selected courses

  • Introduction to Slavic Cultures
  • History of Russian and Soviet Film
  • The Russian Novel
  • Gender in Communist and Post-Communist Societies
  • The Net Generation: Contemporary Russian and American Youth Cultures
  • Intermediate Russian
  • Russia after Communism
  • Second Language Acquisition
  • Language in Culture


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