A linguist looks at what the Russian language can tell us about Russian history and the Russian character. Who were the early Slavs? Why is Russian so influenced by oriental languages? Who actually were the “Rus”? A popular-science talk for historians and linguists, with copious illustrations and a huge handout.

Andrew Jameson follows in the footsteps of his Russian professor Boris Unbegaun who made a lifelong study of the interaction between language and society. Andrew Jameson learnt Russian in the Forces and worked in Berlin as a radio monitor. After Oxford he worked on fieldwork for the Nuffield Russian Project, spending six months at Moscow University, incidentally getting to know some well-known dissidents of the time. He taught Russian language and culture at Portsmouth and Lancaster universities, and organised many popular residential courses for adults at Knuston Hall, Alston Hall, Essex, UEA and Lancaster. His particular interests are the Russian avant-garde in its various manifestations, and the cultural history of the Russian language. Since retirement he has often lectured in St Petersburg, Moscow and Khabarovsk. He now works as a professional translator.

The talk is open to both SCRSS members and non-members. Normal entrance fees apply: SCRSS members £3.00 / non-members £5.00. Pay cash on entry.

Light refreshments are available before the talk.