cod. 13980

Academic year 2023/24
2° year of course - Second semester
- Maria Candida GHIDINI
Academic discipline
Slavistica (L-LIN/21)
Letterature straniere
Type of training activity
30 hours
of face-to-face activities
6 credits
hub: PARMA
course unit

Learning objectives

This approach to Russian literature texts will offer to the students a basic knowledge and understanding in the field of the Russian literary culture in the XIX century.
During the course, the student learns to
- understand the late nineteenth century Russian literary scene and, through the prism of its literary monuments, to grasp their historical, political, cultural and artistic panorama;
- highlight texts' formal characteristics linking them with all the vivid polemics of the so-called Great Reforms Era;
- find independently additional information on the topics discussed bibliography using both in print and digital material;
make judgments informed and motivated, based on a careful decoding of the text, 
- refine the method of a close reading by applying it freely to other texts, exposing their interpretations in light of the critical literature on the subject.


in order to successfully attend the course you must have read the above mentioned texts and taken the Russian Literature 1 exam.

Course unit content

The Brothers Karamazov. An example of close reading
Dostoevsky's great novel is the epitome of the writer's artistic creation. During the twentieth century thinkers and philosophers have read and interpretated it, making it a milestone in the history of modern philosophic thought. The course objective is to read the novel, placing it within the Dostoevsky's production and raising the question of the legitimacy of philosophical interpretation of literary texts (enrichment or reduction?)

Full programme

The complete program will be available on Elly at the beginning of the course and may be modified according to the needs and suggestions of the students.
Further bibliographic references will be given during the course and will be listed in the exam syllabus on the course page on the academic platform elly


F.M. DOSTOEVSKY, Brothers Karamazov;
M.C. GHIDINIi, Dostoevskij, Salerno Editore, Roma 2017.
G. Carpi, Storia della letteratura russa, Carrocci, Roma.
Complete bibliography and useful materials can be found on the course page at

Teaching methods

Classroom lectures with audiovisual materials and oral discussion.
During the lectures the professor will introduce the main elements of the historical and cultural context, the author's profile and the novels, using both the bibliography of the course and additional visual or textual materials, that will be ​​available on the platform elly. Suggestions for individual path of study and analysis will be provided, to stimulate a more original and independent approach to the subject
The course will be held in presence, but it will ne also guaranteed remote access through the use of the Teams and Elly platforms with recordings and other specific teaching activities. Suggestions for individual path of study and analysis will be provided, to stimulate a more original and independent approach to the subject

Assessment methods and criteria

Oral examination.
The oral examination will check
- Knowledge of texts, authors, their ideological context and formal issues of the literary period in question;
- Adequate ability to study independently, to re-elaborate personally the material learned during the course, to propose individual insights that go beyond the topics covered in the course, to solve problems decoding complex texts, and make independent judgments.
In order to verify the achievement of such knowledge and skills, oral test questions are designed to assess the knowledge, the ability of independent and original reworking of such knowledge, and the ability to apply knowledge through the analysis of the text and to extend it through connections, comparisons and contrasts.
The examination won't be sufficient when the student can't demonstrate a minimum understanding of the course material and the necessary ability to work autonomously with the course's content. Sufficient evaluation (18-23/30) is determined by the demonstration by the student to have learned the basic and minimum contents of the course, a sufficient level of self-preparation, ability to solve problems related to information retrieval and decoding of texts, as well as the formulation of independent judgment. Scores between 24 and -27 are assigned to the student who produces evidence of a level more than sufficient (24-25/30) or good (26-27/30) evaluation indicators listed above. Higher scores (from 28/30 to 30/30 cum laude) are awarded in presence of a very good to excellent evaluation.

Other information

To attend the course it is useful to follow the course page on the university platform: ttp://