Czech, Polish, South Slavic, or Ukrainian Literature

The M.A. in Czech, Polish, South Slavic, or Ukrainian Literature

The M.A. degree in the corresponding literature is a prerequisite for the M.Phil. and Ph.D. degrees.

Full time students normally complete this portion of the program in two or three semesters. part-time students in the Free-Standing M.A. program must complete the program within four years. Note that two Residence Units are required for the M.A. degree.

Educational goals:
Students will:

  • expand their general knowledge of the Slavic literary tradition of their choice;
  • become conversant in twentieth-century critical and cultural theory and learn to interrogate the fundamental idioms and axioms of our academic practices;
  • achieve a high level of language proficiency in the Slavic language of their choice;
  • learn the skills associated with independent research and academic writing.

Requirements:

1) Coursework: 30 points at the graduate level (numbered 4000 and above), including

  • at least three courses in the primary literature (Czech, Polish, South Slavic, or Ukrainian);
  • the Proseminar in Literary Studies (SLLT GR8001) - an introduction to critical theory and methods, to be completed during the first semester of graduate study;
  • one Directed Research course dedicated to completing the Master's essay, to be taken with the M.A. essay adviser in the second semester;
  • three additional elective courses, which may include courses in history, linguistics, comparative literature and society, or other Slavic literatures.

All courses required for the M.A. are to be selected in consultation with the Director of Graduate Studies. One of the literature and one of the elective courses may be taken for R (registration) credit; all other courses should be taken for a letter grade. 

Note that Directed Research courses (CZCH GR8001- GR8002; POLI GR8001- GR8002; SOSL GR8001- GR8002; UKRN GR8001- GR8002) may be repeated for credit, since the content varies.

Students in South Slavic Literatures should include one or both of the following courses in their program: Literatures of the South Slavs from the Beginning to Realism (CLSS GU4027) and Literatures of the South Slavs from Realism to Today (CLSS GU4028).

Students who plan to do the concentration in Comparative Literature and Society should take CPLS GU4900 in their first year.

2) Languages: Demonstration (by examination) of an advanced level of proficiency in the primary language of study (Czech, Polish, South Slavic, or Ukrainian); an additional Slavic language, particularly Russian, is encouraged but not required.

3) M.A. Essay: An independent research project (30 - 60 pages) completed under the guidance of an adviser and submitted before the end of the of the third semester . For further information, see M.A. essay guidelines.


The M.Phil. in Czech, Polish, South Slavic, or Ukrainian Literature
with a Concentration in Comparative Literature and Society

Prerequisites for this degree are the M.A. in the relevant literature and formal approval by the Slavic Department and the Institute for Comparative Literature and Society.

Students are expected to complete the M.Phil. program before the end of their eighth semester of graduate study.
For the duration of the program, each student works closely with a faculty member who, as a rule, is distinct from the student's M.A. adviser. Students work in their major field as well as toward a concentration in Comparative Literature and Society.
Note that four Residence Units beyond the M.A. (for a total of six) are required for the M.PHil. degree.

Educational goal:

 Students will

  • demonstrate advanced-level knowledge of the Slavic literary tradition of their choice and the academic field;
  • pursue Concentration in Comparative Literature and Society, developing two fields of study in addition to their primary field in Slavic Literature;
  • Note: For a full description of the concentration and expectations regarding minor fields within the concentration, please see the web pages of the Institute for Comparative Literature and Society.
  • acquire pedagogical skills in a variety of classroom experiences by teaching both the Slavic language and literature of their choice under guided supervision;
  • achieve near-native proficiency in two additional languages that are central to their individual research program;
  • continue to hone their skills in academic discourse, research, and writing through coursework, academic publications and conference participation, and through involvement in the vibrant academic life of the Department and the Harriman Institute.


Requirements:

1) Coursework:
at least 30 points beyond the M.A. degree. Specific requirements are as follows:

  • four courses in the primary field (Czech, Polish, South Slavic, or Ukrainian), including one advanced language course;
  • all courses required for the Concentration in Comparative Literature and Society for a total of 24 points (six or seven courses) at the graduate level (4000 and higher), which must include: Introduction to Comparative Literature and Society (CPLS GU4900), which is preferably taken during the first year of graduate study;
  • two doctoral seminars in comparative topics; two courses in a language other than their primary Slavic language, reading texts in their original language (even in courses where class discussion is held in English); additional courses in the minor fields as needed to prepare for the required graduate seminars;
  • Two additional elective courses.

Students should work closely with the Director of Graduate Studies of both Slavic and Comparative Literature and Society in choosing their courses and in determining which courses taken to fulfill the requirements for the primary field (outlined above) may also count toward the requirements for the concentration.

Two courses can be taken for R credit with the approval from the Director of Graduate Studies of both programs.

2) Languages: A reading knowledge of two additional languages of demonstrable importance to the student's research. Proficiency is established by department examination. These research languages should be chosen in consultation with the Directors of Graduate Studies in both programs.

3) Teaching requirement: Three years of participation in the Slavic Department's instructional activities. As a rule, in the second, third, and fourth years of study, students gain exposure to teaching by participating in the Department's language and literature programs. 

4) M.Phil. examination: Students are expected to take the qualifying examination for the M.Phil. degree during their fourth year of graduate study.  Students are examined in their primary literature as well as in both of their minor fields.  Students take the written portion of the examination on two consecutive days, writing for three hours on each day.  Approximately one week after the written examination, the student meets with a three-member faculty committee for the oral portion of the examination, which lasts up to two hours, and which uses the written portion of the examination as the point of departure for a discussion that ranges over the three areas of study.


The Ph.D. in Czech, Polish, South Slavic, or Ukrainian Literature
with a Concentration in Comparative Literature and Society

Prerequisites for this degree are an M.Phil. degree in the corresponding Slavic Literature and formal approval by the Department.
Students are expected to complete the Ph.D. program before the end of their seventh year of graduate study. For the duration of the program, each student works closely with a faculty adviser and two other faculty members who serve as second and third readers on the student's dissertation committee.

Requirements:

1) Dissertation brief: In consultation with the adviser, the candidate prepares a dissertation brief (approximately 12 pages), consisting of the following parts: a presentation of the thesis and the rationale for the dissertation; and outline of the arguments; an expanded table of contents; a bibliography. The candidate then defends this brief before a committee consisting of the adviser and two other faculty members whose expertise is relevant to the dissertation topic. Upon receiving their approval, the candidate proceeds with the dissertation. Students defend the brief before the end of the fourth year of graduate studies.

2) Dissertation research seminar: A required two-semester seminar aimed to facilitate preparation for brief defense and the transition of dissertation research and writing. All students should enroll in it for R credit, preferably in the fourth year.

3)Dissertation: Students should complete, defend, and deposit their dissertation in accordance with the regulations of the Graduate School of Arts and Sciences, normally by the end of the seventh year of graduate study.


Financial Aid

A comprehensive program of financial aid, including fellowships and appointments in teaching, is available to students in the Ph.D. programs.  Students on fellowship receive annually the prevailing stipend and appropriate tuition and health fees through the fifth year, provided that they remain in good academic standing.  It is expected that students will apply for external fellowships as well.  If students receive a year of advanced standing in the academic program, they are entitled to only four years of GSAS fellowship funding.