Russian Language Day was established by the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) in 2010. The day is celebrated on June 6, which coincides with the birthday of Aleksandr Pushkin (1799-1837), a Russian poet considered the father of modern Russian literature.

Russian is the world’s 8th most spoken language and is spoken by over 144 million people in nine different countries. With a rich literary and cultural heritage, Russian is also a strategically important language for many fields, including aero-astro, information technology, nuclear science and engineering, security studies, and more.

Students at MIT interested in Russian Studies can complete a concentration in Russian language or in Russian and Eurasian Studies, and pursue a minor in Russian and Eurasian Studies.

MIT International Science and Technology Initiatives offer internship programs: MIT-Russia and MIT-Kazakhstan. MIT-Russia’s Global Teaching Labs offer a unique opportunity for MIT students to learn by teaching.

In celebration of Russian Language Day, we present this 1828 poem by Aleksandr Pushkin:


Пустое вы сердечным ты
Она, обмолвясь, заменила
И все счастливые мечты
В душе влюбленной возбудила.
Пред ней задумчиво стою,
Свести очей с нее нет силы;
И говорю ей: как вы милы!
И мыслю: как тебя люблю!

Thou and You

She substituted, by a chance,
For empty “you” – the gentle “thou”;
And all my happy dreams, at once,
In loving heart again resound.
In bliss and silence do I stay,
Unable to maintain my role:
“Oh, how sweet you are!” I say –
“How I love thee!” says my soul.