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Information and Disinformation in Russia and Eurasia

Vak 2018-2019

Admission requirements

Not applicable.

Description

In a range of post-Soviet states including Russia, the main broadcast media are under strict state control. In some of these countries the internet at the same time remains a place for vigorous public debate and alternative culture. In addition to curbing free speech at home, Russia in particular is known for its efforts to shape public opinion abroad through disinformation and other forms of manipulation. Russia is said to engage in ‘information warfare’ in order to undermine national governments and the European Union and to influence the outcome of elections. This course looks at the issue of dezinformatsiya (disinformation) and other forms of manipulation from a variety of disciplinary perspectives, including politics, history, international relations, culture, and sociolinguistics. Among the issues that we will look at are Russia’s ‘information warfare’ in its external relations, the use of dezinformatsiya in the Russian empire and the Soviet Union, the rhetoric and language of disinformation, censorship and manipulation in domestic media landscapes, and manipulation and propaganda in culture.

Course objectives

The course provides students with an insight into the issue of disinformation and other forms of manipulation in and by Russia and other Eurasian states. The course teaches students to consider these issues from a variety of disciplinary perspectives. Academic research skills (including the formulation, contextualization, and operationalization of appropriate research questions) are strengthened through a range of written assignments. By the end of the course, students will be able to:
• Demonstrate an understanding of the issue of disinformation and manipulation in its application to post-Soviet Eurasia, through assignments and individual research.
• Understand and explain the (policy) relevance of the issue of disinformation and manipulation for the post-Soviet states and their external relations, and interpret current and past developments in post-Soviet Eurasia through the prism of disinformation and manipulation.

Timetable

The timetable is available on the Timetable.

Mode of instruction

Lecture and seminar

Course Load

Classes: 28 hours
Class preparation: 28 hours
Written assignments: 35
Research paper: 49

Assessment method

  • Practical and written assignments (50% together)
  • Research paper and paper proposal (50%)
    Only the term paper can be retaken. Students pass the course if their weighted average and their grade for the research paper is 5.50 or higher.

Weighing

  • Practical and written assignments (50% together)
  • Research paper and paper proposal (50%)
    Only the term paper can be retaken. Students pass the course if their weighted average and their grade for the research paper is 5.50 or higher.

Resit

Only the term paper can be retaken. Students pass the course if their weighted average and their grade for the research paper is 5.50 or higher.

Exam review

How and when an exam review will take place will be disclosed together with the publication of the exam results at the latest. If a student requests a review within 30 days after publication of the exam results, an exam review will have to be organized.

Blackboard

Blackboard will be used for:
-Announcements
-Dissemination of information about the course
-Submission of assignments and the research paper
-Marking assignments and the research paper
-Notification of grades

Reading list

Articles, book chapters and online material are listed in a course outline which will be made available on Blackboard.

Registration

Enrolment through uSis is mandatory.
General information about uSis is available on the website

Registration Studeren à la carte and Contractonderwijs

Not applicable

Contact

For questions about the content of the course, you can contact the teacher:
Dr. M. Bader

Coordinator of Studies: mw. drs. T. Bouma

Administrations Office: van Wijkplaats

Remarks

Not applicable