This course is designed to review key aspects of Russia’s culture and politics as well as to offer a concise introduction to the main stages of the country’s historical and territorial development. Topics will include institutions and society (government, education, politics, economy, labour, media, etc.) and essential cultural features (festivals, customs, traditions, etiquette, way of life, leisure, etc.). Major events that have contributed to the shaping of the country will also be presented and their significance discussed. The role and place of the regions within this historical process will be examined, so as to understand the correlation of distinct regional characteristics with related historical developments. At the same time, the course will relate these facts to significant moments of the country’s recent history, such as the post-war period of recovery, the desovietization process, the construction of the Russian speaking world, the Eurasian Asian Economic Union, Customs Union projects and turn to the East politics. The medium of instruction is English.