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PIIRS Global Seminar Russia 2019
Moscow, Russia (Outgoing Program)
Program Terms:
Program Terms: Summer
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This program is currently not accepting applications.
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Partner Institution/Organization Homepage: Click to visit
Restrictions: Princeton applicants only
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Fact Sheet:
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Dept Offering Program: PIIRS Program Type: Study Abroad (summer)
Language of Instruction: English Language Prerequisite: No
Degree Level: 1st year u/g students, 2nd year u/g students, 3rd year u/g students Time Away: Summer
Program Group: PIIRS
Program Description:
Program Description:
Moscow: Culture, History, Politics
The Fish Benoist Family Global Seminar
Simon Morrison, Professor of Music and Slavic Languages and Literature
June 10–July 19, 2019

This seminar explores the history, culture, and politics of Moscow, a metropolis of 12 million that is at once the capital of the Russian Federation and a state of its own, distinct from the rest of the country and the world. Moscow is Russia, even as it stands apart. Its distance from St. Petersburg and Europe has always proved a benefit rather than a hindrance in the construction of Russianness. The ancient center includes Baroque churches, cottages, and mansions from the imperial era, mixed in with the monuments of seven decades of Soviet rule. Yet the city has never been isolated from world events: it bore the brunt of Napoleon and repelled the Nazis. Its inhabitants suffered the bubonic plague as well as the horrors of the Stalinist purges. Now it is controlled by oligarchs under the thumb of Vladimir Putin and a political class seemingly intent on restoring Moscow — and thus Russia — to international predominance.

The seminar begins with the construction of the Kremlin, the citadel at the heart of Moscow along a bend in the river, and then proceeds chronologically from the 17th-century to the present, exploring the city’s contribution to religious and philosophical thought, literature, and music while tracing the physical and political history of the capital. Students will make excursions to museums and theaters, the estates of the novelist Leo Tolstoy and composer Pyotr Tchaikovsky, the imposing Russian State Archive of Literature and Art, Stalin’s wartime bunker, the Kremlin, and, for contrast, visit the palaces of the former imperial capital of St. Petersburg.

Simon Morrison is a professor of music, who specializes in 20th-century music, particularly Russian, Soviet and French music, with special interests in dance, cinema, aesthetics, and historically informed performance based on primary sources. Morrison is the author of Russian Opera and the Symbolist Movement (California, 2002) and The People’s Artist: Prokofiev’s Soviet Years (Oxford, 2009) as well as editor of Prokofiev and His World (Princeton, 2008) and, with Klara Moricz, Funeral Games: In Honor of Arthur Vincent Lourié (Oxford, 2014).

Seminar Manager
Yolanda Sullivan can be reached at

Distribution Requirements
The seminar fulfills the HA (Historical Analysis) requirement and the requirements for the certificate in Russian, East European and Eurasian Studies.

Program Fee: Global Seminars range in price from $6,000-8,000. PIIRS provides generous funding to students admitted to the Global Seminars who receive term financial aid. Possibilities for additional financial support may be available through the Student Activities Funding Engine (SAFE). Princeton Subsidized Student Loans, available from the Office of Financial Aid, are also highly recommended over charging costs to a credit card. Please consult Financing Options for Students and Parents 2018-19, specifically pages 1–2 and Table 3, and contact the Office of Financial Aid for more information

The Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act of 1974 (FERPA) is a federal law that helps protect the privacy of student education records.  Rights afforded to students under FERPA include the right to impact and review your educational record, the right to seek amendment to those records and the right to prevent disclosure of information of the educational records without prior consent, subject to some specific exceptions.

What PIIRS cannot disclose
  • Account and billing information
  • Grades and transcripts
  • Housing and contact information of student while abroad
  • Course or schedule information

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Dates / Deadlines:
This program is not currently accepting applications. Please consult the sponsoring department's website for application open dates.
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This program is currently not accepting applications.