Department of Chinese, Vietnamese, Laotian and Thai Languages

The Department of the Chinese, Vietnamese, Laotian, Burmese, Thai and Khmer languages was founded in 1954 on the basis of the Chinese Department of the Moscow Institute of Oriental Studies. The first Head of the Department was Nikolay N. Korotkov (1954–1959), an expert in both modern and classical Chinese language, a co-author of the first text-book on the Chinese language published in the USSR.

Professors who worked at the Department in the 1950-60s became prominent scholars: Y.V.Rojdestvenskiy, Doctor of Philology, V.M.Solntzev (afterwards the Director of the Institute of Linguistics of the Russia’s Academy of Sciences), M.G.Pryadokhin, assistant professor, an outstanding translator, interpreter and researcher of the Chinese language. Together with L.V.Pryadokhina he compiled «A Short Dictionary of the Chinese Language Difficulties» and «A Short Dictionary of Allusions in the Chinese Language».
In 1965–1988 the Department was chaired by V.I.Gorelov, Doctor of Philology who published over 50 research papers including: «A Practical Grammar of the Chinese Language», «Stylistics of the Chinese Language», «Manual on Translation from Russian into Chinese».

The Department is proud of its famous graduates, specialists in Chinese studies, such as Deputy Ministers of Foreign Affairs, Ambassadors Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary S.O.Rakhmanin, L.P.Moyseev, A.I.Denysov, S.S.Razov, Y.B.Kashlev, V.Y.Vorobyov; Secretary of State, Minister of Foreign Affairs of Kazakhstan K. Tokaev and others.
A course in Burmese, the state language of the Union of Myanmar, was offered at the MGIMO in 1957. T.A.Gulkova and her former student S.D.Borisenko were the first professors teaching the course. Aung Vin, a native speaker of Burmese, who came to teach students at the MGIMO in 1969, compiled «Manual on Political Translation». I.M.Tagunova, a leading professor of the Department, has joined the Department in 1973. She is one of the authors of the book «The Burmese Language» and «Sketches on the Simple Sentence Syntax in Burmese». She also wrote manuals on Burmese for the 1st, 2nd year students and for undergraduates.

A course in the Thai language, the first one in the USSR, started at MGIMO in 1954. The first professors teaching the course were L.N.Morev, Doctor of Philology, Y.Y.Plam, Candidate of Philology, M.F.Fomitcheva, Candidate of Philology. Since 1976 L.V.Larionova, assistant professor, Vice-President of Russia — Thailand Friendship Society, has been teaching the Thai language. A.A.Obukhov and M.A.Romanov, specialists in Thai studies, are Ambassadors Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary.

Since 1954 the Department has been offering a course in the Vietnamese language. V.V.Serafimov, R.L.Khamydullyn, A.A.Tatarinov, specialists in Vietnamese studies, hold the rank of Ambassadors Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of the Russian Federation.

Long Seam, professor of the Pedagogical Institute of the Pnompen City has been teaching the Khmer language since 1964.

MGIMO students began to study the Laotian language in 1972. Y.Y.Plam, Chief of the East and South-East Asia Division at the Institute of Eastern Studies of the Russian Academy of Sciences became their first professor. Together with L.N.Morev, Doctor of Philology, Y.Y.Plam compiled the first «Laotian-Russian Dictionary» published in Russia.

Head of Department

Olga Maslovets Olga Maslovets

Ph.D. in Pedagogical Sciences


+7 495 229-38-04 (inner 13-65)
Room: 2103