This has been in my mind for quite some time. Looking at Artin Schreier Theorem for fields:

If L is a field and K its algebraic closure and if 1< [K:L] < infinity then L=K[i] and L is a real closed field (Thus L has characteristic 0. Here i is just the square root of -1).

I was wondering if a "generalized" Artin Schreier exist or if someone could refer to me to some paper that attempts this. There is a concept of real closedness and "algebraic closedness" of reduced commutative rings, but I doubt that the statement would hold.

So one has the following conjecture:

If L is a reduced commutative ring and K is its total integral closure (this is an equivalent notion of algebraic closure if K and L were fields) and if 1<[K:L]< infinity (here I mean that K is a finite L-module that is not the same as L) then L is real (thus its characteristic is 0.. and one can add that L is real closed in the sense of reduced commutative rings).

Can one easily show this, even at least prove that L has characteristic 0?