To Reason Russia from the Mind

An Original Summer School

on Russian Language and Culture in an Era of Change

by Igor Nemirovsky

Tallinn, Estonia
June 10 – July 19, 2024 (6 weeks)

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Fedor Tiutchev, the renowned nineteenth-century Russian poet, defined his relationship to Russia as follows: “Russia cannot be reasoned from the mind / nor measured on a common scale.” Unfortunately, the realities of our time precludes us from the luxury of “not reasoning Russia from the mind.” We must strive towards this goal, and such is the objective of our summer school on Russian language and culture which will take place in the delightful atmosphere of Russophone Tallinn from June 10-July 19, 2024. 

The core of our program is comprised of a Russian language course totaling 120 hours throughout the program. It will offer instruction for learners of all levels, from beginners to advanced students. All our students will undergo testing to determine the levels. The lessons will take place within small groups. If students desire, the program could be facilitated in such a way as to count for credit in their respective universities. 

Our lecture program includes an array of courses taught in English and Russian, intended for those interested in Russian culture on the undergraduate level. The program is geared not only towards students majoring in Russian or Slavic studies, but for all who wish to “reason Russia from the mind.” The lectures will be of great interest to students studying history, political science, comparative literature, and anyone with an interest in Russian culture. In addition, we offer a diverse range of lectures conducted in English, which will be given by leading scholars of Russian culture including Kevin M. F. Platt (University of Pennsylvania), Alexander Etkind (CEU), Ilya Kalinin (Humboldt University), and others.

For graduate students, we offer a strong lecture program and individual language courses. PhD students, in addition to language courses and lectures on intellectual history and culture, will be offered dissertation consultations.

Moreover, Academic Studies Press will be organizing online talks with our authors, among whom are the leading specialists in Slavic studies and adjacent fields. 

Come explore Tallinn with us! Tallinn is a wonderful and friendly place that offers its visitors the unique experience of a medieval European capital imbued with the rich culture of a borderland nation between Europe and Russia. Besides its historical sites and the awe-inspiring nature of the Baltic shore, it offers an opportunity to get acquainted with the extensive Russian-speaking community in Estonia. The School’s program includes various excursions in Tallinn, visits to the Russian Theatre, and one-day trips to Riga (by bus) and Helsinki (by ferry).

During the School, students will be accommodated in hostels; if desired, language immersion living opportunities in Russian-speaking host families will also be available. Breakfasts and lunches are included during the weekdays. If you would like to stay in a hotel, please, contact us before May 1st, so we will be able to arrange it with extra costs. 

All attendees will receive a course completion certificate.

We invite prospective students to our information session – 12 p.m. (EST) on January 22, 2024. You will meet the academic director, lecturers, and school coordinator. Register for the session

The session will be recorded, Q&A will be available via our website:

Total cost: $5,200 USD
Early bird registration (before March 1st, 2024): $4,450 USD
Registration deadline: May 1st, 2024
NB: We welcome groups from universities and are ready to work with them to customize the program. US citizens do not need a visa, and you will have a coordinator on site.

I hope to see you in Tallinn!


Igor Nemirovsky,
Director of Academic Studies Press


Igor Nemirovsky, director

Ilya Kalinin, academic director

Asya Khodyreva, communications and PR 


Russian Language Course

120 hours. Lead instructor Olga Roginskaya, 4-5 instructors of Russian will be available for small groups or individual study.

  • 120 hours: 6 weeks (20 hours per week / 5 days, 2 disciplines per day (4 hours)
  • Testing: there will be a placement test conducted prior to the program, so that students receive the instruction they need
  • Content: the course is an introduction to the contemporary Russian language, addressing five core areas: reading, vocabulary, listening, grammar, and speaking
  • Methodology: Aside from traditional language learning, students will have the chance to work on a range of creative projects outside of class, which they will present to their peers every week
  • Evaluation: At the end of a program, there will be an exam on each of the five core areas that will comprise the final grade

The guiding principle regarding Russian language instruction at the school is the combination of a linguistic and a cultural-historical approach to language learning, an emphasis on the formation of linguistic intuition and analytical skills, as well as an awareness of the stylistic and ideological components of the studied linguistic constructions and scenarios.

For graduate students working on theses and dissertations, we offer, as part of our Writing, Speaking, and Discussing sections, specialized study of academic Russian and personal consultations on writing texts and presenting research in Russian.

Texts for reading and discussion (Reading and Vocabulary) are intended to correspond to texts discussed by our lecturers, dedicated to Russian culture, history, and politics; students will thus be able to gain a feel for the original language, while also enriching their vocabulary.

The Phonetics and Listening course will involve not only work with the reception and comprehension of spoken speech, but also with different intonational constructions in Russian and their respective discursive-situational content. To this effect, the course will feature work with Russophone news, television and internet resources, as well as with interview shows from TV and YouTube.

Lectures (for annotations, please visit our website):

Origins of Contemporary Russia

Artemy Magun, PhD, Philosopher, Institute of Global Reconstitution

Literature, Borders, Territory and Deterritorialization

Kevin M. F. Platt, PhD, University of Pennsylvania

Russia against Modernity

Alexander Etkind, PhD, Central European University

Cultural Politics and Culture as Politics in Contemporary Russia

Ilya Kalinin, PhD, Humboldt University, Berlin

Tamizdat: Contraband Literature from the USSR and the Eastern Bloc

Yasha Klots, PhD, Hunter College, City University of New York

Diversity of Russian Culture: Linguistic Dimension

Kapitolina Fedorova, PhD, School of Humanities at Tallinn University

The Story of Rock Music in Russia, 1950s-2020s

Artemy Troitsky, author of international bestseller “Back in the USSR – The true story of Rock in Russia”

Russian Opera: Cosmopolitan Art in the Mirror of Russian Nationalism

Kira Nemirovsky, musicologist, and music critic, Academic Studies Press

Female Face of the Russian Avant-Garde

Ksenia Remezova, art historian, curator, researcher of the Russian avant-garde

The Discreet Charm of Violence in Russian Literature

Igor Nemirovsky, PhD, Director of Academic Studies Press

Russian Short Story of the 20th Century

Grigori Utgof, PhD, Tallinn University