Early Russian and Soviet Film
The course will examine early Jewish films (in Yiddish or Russian) produced in tsarist Russia, Soviet Russia, and Poland in the span of 25 years, from the very beginnings of silent film to the early years of sound film, from the twilight years of Russian monarchy (and the notorious Pale of Settlement) through Bolshevik Revolution and up to the spread of Hitlerism in Europe. No prerequisites. All readings and discussions will be in English. All films have English intertitles or subtitles.
Required Books (UBookstore): 1. Sholem Aleichem, Tevye the Dairyman and The Railroad Stories 2. Sholem Aleichem, The Letters of Menakhem-Mendl & Sheyne-Sheyndl and Motl, the Cantor’s Son 3. Michael Alexander. Jazz Age Jews 4. S. An-ski. The Dybbuk 5. Isaac Babel. Red Cavalry and Other Stories 6. Walter Benjamin. Moscow Diary 7. Jeffrey Veidlinger. The Moscow State Jewish Theater: Jewish Culture on the Soviet Stage 8. Robert Wienberg, Stalin’s Forgotten Zion: Birobidzhan and the Making of a Soviet Homeland.