RUSYAK visits Brighton Beach for cultural excursion

Nov. 22, 2021

By Genrietta Churbanova ’24

On Saturday, Nov. 20, Princeton University’s Society of Russian Language and Culture (RUSYAK) led an excursion to Brighton Beach, New York. Brighton Beach is known for its high concentration of Russian-speakers and is well-known among the Russian-speaking diaspora.

RUSYAK began its excursion with a Russian-style lunch at the restaurant Stolovaya. Club members shared salad olivier and seledka pod shuboy as appetizers before enjoying main courses such as kotleti po kievski and shashlik. After lunch, the group headed to Brighton Beach’s central street which is lined with small businesses run by individuals from across the Russian-speaking world. Club members explored businesses such as Armenian grocers, Russian bookstores, Georgian bakeries and Ukrainian cafes. 

A key pillar of RUSYAK’s mission is fostering a more nuanced understanding of the Russian-speaking world, and this excursion was an important step in furthering that mission. This excursion highlighted to members that the Russian-speaking world is not culturally, ethnically or politically monolithic, according to the organizers. RUSYAK also met up with two members of the University of Pennsylvania’s Russian Club on the excursion, furthering RUSYAK’s mission of building an inter-university community amongst those interested in the Russian speaking world.

The excursion was co-sponsored by the Program in Russian, East European and Eurasian Studies and the Department of Slavic Languages and Literatures.