"The Russian newspaper to your morning coffee"

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About the course

The course "The Russian newspaper to your morning coffee" is the third part of the general programme "Activization of Russian speech". It includes teaching three basic kinds of speech activity: listening, reading and speaking (writing-in the least degree). Using the materials of the course you may do such kinds of writing tasks as reproduction, essay, free dictation (a free record of a fragment heard through) and some others. In other words the author of the programme pursues two goals.    

The first goal is to deal with Russian magazine or newspaper original texts (not only to understand the basic information of the text, but to look into the shades of the meaning, conditioned by  the context, to catch  the author's intentions and to interpret the concealed meaning  of his  writing, that is, to read between the lines).    

What will you learn from the programme?

But, please, remember that it is not only your level of practising Russian but the common "background" knowledge -yours and those of the Russians that guarantee success of your communication with Russian people.

You know that before you say something you must know what to say. This "something" should not "be either cardinally at variance with" the stereotypes of Russian thinking or run counter to Russian realities.

To form your "background" knowledge about the life of Russia now and about the mentality of her people you are offered texts that may "satisfy anybody test" as Russians say. Looking through the Topical Index of the book you can value the thematic variety of its texts. It includes about 200 texts of various length.

The textual variety of the book is meant to break up the foreigners' stereotype opinion about Russia that presents quite a simple chain of conceptions: "lapti-samovary-valenki", "caviar-borshch-vodka", ‘bears-matryoshki-balalaiki". Of course , you will be given information about how they drink tea in Moscow, about Russian snow, about how a  French cook appreciated Russian borshch at its true value, about the Russian folk holiday Maslennitsa. And still, the author tried to show you Russia's national customs and traditions, the universal features of its culture.

You will see Russia that integrated in the world, a great country, that gave the world a composer, who reflected face of the 20-th century in his music (I. Stravinsky), the best Juliet in the world of ballet (G. Ulanova), a great inventor of the well-known gun (M. Kalashnikov), the hockey-player, the famous goal-keeper who won all possible and impossible awards in sport (V. Tretjak). Fellini of the Russian cinematography (A. Tarkovsky) and many other Russians who may rightfully enter on this list of most remarkable, outstanding people of this country.

Besides, in the 100 Units of the course you will find curious information about symphonic and popular music, about fragrancies, about how memory works, about new theatre projects and premieres, about the films that have already been released and those that  are still  being shot,  about yachting, tennis, Russian province, sings of the zodiac, the interior of Russian flats, about painting, school-leaving parties, private schools, meals and drinks. In short, you will  have much to discuss.

© Е. И. Бегенева, 2010
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