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Travel grants awarded in 2000

Six travel grants were awarded by the Central Europe & Russia Task Force for summer 2000 and academic year 2000-01.

J. Patrick Dale

Assistant Professor of Political Science, St. Olaf College. Dr. Dale traveled to Moscow and Krasnodar in July, 2000 to research the formation of political parties. He is a past director of the ACM Central European Studies program.

Leslie Davis

Director of International Education, DePauw University. Ms. Davis' project had two distinct parts: course development, to develop her teaching, and program site visits, supporting her duties as Director of International Education.

In pursuit of the first goal, Ms. Davis attended a two-week course entitled "Gender, Nation and Identity: Cross-Cultural and Cross-Disciplinary Perspectives" at the Central European University in Budapest and gained valuable insights into East Central European film. On her return to Wabash College, her previous employer, she delivered a lecture on "Film in East Central Europe Since 1989" and reprised her freshman tutorial, "Eastern Europe through Cinema." She found that she was much more confident in teaching the tutorial, and her students' work was stronger, as a result of the course at CEU. She also taught a half-credit course for upperclassmen on "Eastern European Cinema: Three Great Filmmakers." She is planning to teach inter term courses in film during DePauw's January term, both on campus and in Eastern Europe.

The experience has also helped Ms. Davis' work as Director of International Education. While in Central Europe she visited a number of study-abroad program sites, including the Beloit College and Lexia study abroad program sites in Budapest and the ACM Central European Studies program site at Palacky University, Olomouc, Czech Republic. The visits helped her to formulate a thorough list of questions and expectations that she has of undergraduate off-campus study programs. She has used those expectations in evaluating other programs, and in helping her students plan their off-campus study.

Ms. Davis's travel was partially funded by a Lilly International Studies Mini-Grant from Wabash College.

Kelly Herold

Assistant Professor of Russian, Grinnell College. Dr. Herold spent the summer of 2000 working in the National Library of the Czech Republic with first edition French works about Russia. This research contributed to her work on "Russian Autobiographical Literature in French: Recovering a Memoiristic Tradition (1770-1830)," an expansion of her dissertation; she hopes to complete the monograph by the summer of 2002. This study analyzes the social context of Russian French-language memorists in an attempt not only to understand the stylistic and generic aspects of their literary production, but also to investigate the nature of foreign influence on Russian literature and culture. The adaptation of French literature by French-language memorists reveals much about the influence of French works on Russian culture in particular and about the nature of literary borrowing and adaptation in general.

Dr. Herold reports that the National Library of the Czech Republic has an excellent Slavonic Library with an outstanding and unusual collection of 18th- and 19th-century printed material (the original Smiridin Library). With the help of the chief librarian, she was able to read many 18th-century French works about Russia that are difficult to access in the United States. She was able to read, and even photocopy, a number of extremely rare and valuable works including the writings of Goudar, Castera and Chantreau in their first editions. She reports that her research in Prague will add complexity and thoroughness to her monograph.

The Grinnell College Grant Board supported Dr. Herold's research in London and Dublin at the beginning of the summer.

Krzysztof Jasiewicz

Professor of Sociology, Washington and Lee University. Dr. Jasiewicz's project examines the relationship between Lech Walesa's adversarial rhetoric and his loss of the presidential election in 1995. After analyzing public opinion data, he spent two and a half weeks in Poland in July 2000. There he focused on further analysis of public opinion data and on content analysis of the transcripts of the 1995 television debates between Walesa and his opponent, Aleksander Kwasniewski. He gathered data at public opinion polling centers (CBOS and OBOP) and archives of Polish Public Television (Telewizja Polska), Polish Press Agency (PAP) and two major newspapers, Gazeta Wyborcza and Rzeczpospolita. A graduate student from the Department of Sociology at Warsaw University served as his research assistant. At the end of the month Dr. Jasiewicz presented his research in a paper entitled "'You Can Shake My Foot': The Uses of Adversity in the Presidential Elections in Poland" at the Sixth World Congress of the International Council for Central and East European Studies in Tampere, Finland, He continued his work in Warsaw in August, expanding his analyses to include the data from the 2000 presidential campaign, in which Walesa was again a candidate. During the 2000-2001 academic year, Dr. Jasiewicz continued to work on the project, and returned to Poland in October 2000 to gather additional data. The expanded and revised version of the paper presented in Tampere will become as a chapter in a book on Polish politics he is currently completing. With the data collected for this project, he has also contributed to two academic events. The first event, a panel discussion at Elon University, took place on September 24, 2001, in connection with a lecture by Walesa at Elon. The second was a series of special classes at Washington and Lee, also organized in connection to Walesa's visit (October 30, 2001).

Bruce Polay

Professor of Music, Knox College. In fall 2000, Dr. Polay worked with two professional orchestras in Russia and Belarus: The Bolshoi Theater Chamber Orchestra (composed of the best musicians of the Bolshoi Theater Symphony) in Moscow and the Belorussian State Philharmonic (considered the third best orchestra of the former Soviet Union). While in Minsk, he gave a masterclass for the combined conducting classes of the Belorussian Academy of Music. Dr. Polay also gave a concert at the Minsk Autumn Festival of the Belorussian State Philharmonic Society with the Moscovite pianist Mikhail Petukhov. This experience gave him an increased understanding of Russian performance practice, which contributed greatly to his classroom teaching. A crucial goal of his trip was to connect Russian musicians/scholars with faculty from the Global Partners colleges. He has distributed information on musicians he met in Russia to music departments at member colleges. The Belorussian State Philharmonic and the Belorussian Academy of Music have both extended invitations for him to return, and the response from the Bolshoi was also positive. He has invited Mikhail Petukhov to appear with the Knox-Galesburg Symphony in April 2002.

Anatoly Vishevsky

Associate Professor of Russian, Grinnell College. Dr. Vishevsky spent a sabbatical year in Prague, developing his Czech language skills. He attended the theatre and movies to strengthen his grammar, comprehension, and conversational abilities. He also worked on an article on contemporary Russian popular literature, meeting with scholars at Charles University and giving talks on 19th century literature. With a Czech colleague he organized an international conference on post-Soviet literature, with participants from ten countries. He is now planning a course on Central and East European history through film.


updated 10/2/02

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