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CREECA Monthly

April 2015
Tulips bloom last spring at the University of Wisconsin-Madison chancellor's residence.
(Photo by Jeff Miller/UW-Madison)
(Photo credit: Andrei Boyakov)
Q&A With Alec Luhn
Luhn ('10) earned a B.A. in History, Journalism, and Russian Language and Civilization from UW-Madison. He now works as a freelance journalist in Russia.

You are originally from Stoughton, Wis. What first piqued your interest in Russia?

We read some Brothers Karamazov excerpts in high school, but honestly I never really had an active interest until the course fair on my first day at UW-Madison. I had a lot of AP credits and didn't really know what to do with myself until I stumbled across the Russian department stand, where they invited me to sign up for a first-year interest group that included classes in Russian language, literature and history. I always liked learning languages and thought that Russian sounded exotic. The rest is history... 
Read the full story here.

(Photo credit: Andrei Boyakov)
Martin Scorsese Film Series Brings Polish Favorites to Madison

If you had to ask someone for a film recommendation, Martin Scorsese, the American producer, director, and actor, would be a good choice. So would Jim Healy, Director of Programming at UW Cinematheque and the Wisconsin Film Festival. Both have made the Madison screening of the “Martin Scorsese Presents Masterpieces of Polish Cinema” film series possible.

While the series contains 21 films selected by Scorsese—by directors such as Andrzej Wajda and Jerzy Kawalerowicz—the UW could only accommodate half as many.
 Full article here.

(Photo: courtesy Milestone Films)
Register Until April 24 for CESSI 2015!
Spend the summer learning a central Eurasian language! 
At CESSI—the Central Eurasian Studies Summer Institutestudents complete a full year of college language instruction in an eight-week summer session.

Registration is open until April 24, 2015. The application form and details about tuition, financial aid, and housing are found here.

This year, intensive courses in Kazakh, Uyghur, and Uzbek will be offered. Please contact Nancy Heingartner
(, CESSI program coordinator, with any questions about the program.
Community Updates
Manon van de Water (Slavic Languages and Literature & Interdisciplinary Theatre Studies Program) has a new book out, co-authored with UW alumni Mary McAvoy and Kristin Hunt, Drama and Education: Performance Methodologies for Teaching and Learning (Routledge, 2015). This comprehensive work is among the first practical drama and performance textbooks that address brain-based, neuroscientific research, making the argument that creativity is necessary in our lives, that embodied learning is natural and essential, and that contextual learning helps us find our place in society in relationship to peoples and cultures. This is the textbook for 362 "Drama for Teaching and Learning," which has been revised to also include a unit on foreign language teaching. In addition, van de Water's proposal Playing with Dostoevsky: Theatre and Drama in Wisconsin Prisons has been awarded a Baldwin Wisconsin Idea Endowment mini-grant. 

Ed Purcell (Certificate in Russian Area Studies '66, PhD Slavic Languages and Linguistics '71) has had a paper titled "A Model of the Perception of Serbo-Croatian Word Tone" accepted for presentation at the 18th International Congress of Phonetic Sciences in Glasgow Scotland.
Help-Seeking and Barriers of Domestic Violence Survivors in Kyrgyzstan: A Grounded Theory Study
Thursday, April 16, 2015
4 p.m., 206 Ingraham Hall
Saltanat Childress is a PhD Candidate at the School of Social Work, University of Maryland, Baltimore and an Honorary Fellow at the Center for Russia, East Europe, and Central Asia, University of Wisconsin-Madison. She holds her MSW from Washington University in St. Louis, Brown School of Social Work. 

This talk explores the experiences of women with gender-based violence in Kyrgyzstan, their coping mechanisms, and barriers to help-seeking, using methods of qualitative research and grounded theory development. See more here.
Pilshchikov talk
Thursday, April 23, 2015
4 p.m., 206 Ingraham Hall
Igor Pilshchikov is a lead researcher at the Institute for World Culture at the Moscow State University and a senior researcher at Tallinn University. He is the author of Batiushkov and Italian Literature (2003, in Russian) and Vocabulary and Phraseology of “Eugene Onegin” (with Igor Dobrodomov, 2008, in Russian). 

Providing an overview of the burgeoning area of digital humanities in Russia, the lecture will focus on digital libraries and collections of texts that offer comprehensive body of materials pertaining to classical Russian literature and folklore.  See more here.

See the full event calendar here.

Wisconsin Film Festival (April 9-16)

This year's festival features several CREECA-region films. Highlights include:

Children's short film series:

See the full lineup here.

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Contribute to the CREECA Community Fund
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Phone: (608) 262 3379