Russian Political History Work: Stuff You’re Going to Do While I’m in DC*

*And stuff the kids in DC will need to do before they come back from the break.

Hey guys!

Today you should be combined with Dr. Roach’s classes in my classroom, and you’ll be working on material which addresses Russian political history.  This is critical information, and I expect you to work through it carefully, because I WILL NOT be reteaching this material after the break; we won’t have time.

Here’s the plan:

  1. Some of you have already begun material on early Russian political history, and some of you haven’t.  Regardless of where you are in the material, none of you have FINISHED it, so I need you to DOWNLOAD THESE NOTES ON RUSSIAN POLITICAL HISTORY and review them thoroughly.  I have created several screencasts lectures which explain these notes, and I strongly recommend that you watch them at your leisure, either during this class period or at a later point:

    Additionally, if we didn’t watch them in your class, please watch the following TED Ed videos on Russian history:

      You should also thoroughly read through the relevant material in your 3.2 Reading Packet on pages 2 to 9.
  2. After familiarizing yourself with the basics of Russian political history, please work to complete the Information Gathering_Russian Political History graphic organizer and associated discussion questions.
  3. Once you have completed your Information Gathering sheet, please work to complete the Cross Matrix_Russian Political History and associated comparative Venn diagram.

All of these assignments will be due on the day we return from Thanksgiving break, so I STRONGLY recommend that you work hard to complete all of your work BEFORE we go on break so that you can enjoy yourself.

Current Event: Russian Federation!

Your current event for Unit Three will be due on either December 17th or 18th by the start of your class period. In order to do this, you will need to use one of the following publications:

BE AWARE THAT SEVERAL OF THOSE ARE RUSSIAN STATE-RUN MEDIA OUTLETS.  You can certainly use them– they provide an interesting opportunity to work on critical reading and analysis– but you should DEFINITELY do your research and keep your eyes open for propaganda and suppression of dissent, as that should be part of your analysis.

Find an article in one of those publications that is on a recent POLITICAL event or significant topic in the Russian Federation– preferably, one of interest to you. Read the article carefully (consider printing it out so that you can annotate it, perhaps), and the complete the form below. You will need to provide the URL to your article, so make sure you don’t lose it!

Current Event Form: Russian Federation!

Non-Democratic Models of Government!

Today, you’re going to do some background work on models of non-democratic government using data from the 2018 Freedom House report on global freedom.

First, make sure you have the analysis form from class: Models of Nondemocratic Rule.

Using the 2018 Freedom House report on global freedom and the explanation of the NGO’s methodology, answer the first three questions on the analysis form.  Then, use your 3.1 reading packet (pgs. 19-28) to research the listed models of non-democratic forms of government.  Once you have defined each model of non-democratic government and described how it functions, use the information from Freedom House to identify at LEAST one current country which fits the description of each type of non-democratic model

Non-Democratic Regimes: Documentary Questions!

After watching the documentary film Chuck Norris vs. Communism in class, please choose ONE of the three discussion questions listed below to answer on a separate sheet of paper.  You will need to turn it in during our next class meeting.  Please use specific examples from the film to justify your response.

  1. How does the non-democratic state represented in the film demonstrate its control over the general population? Why is the state interested in exercising these controls?  Be specific and provide examples to justify your answer.
  2. What is civil society?  How is it represented– or prevented– in the film?  What role did the video viewing clubs play in recreating this institution?  Again, be specific and provide examples.
  3. In the film, the state is extremely concerned with censorship of media.  How is a free media related to a robust democratic society? Can you provide examples of this from the film?

Unit Two Online Study Session!

Hopefully you guys remember the drill from last time:  I’ll be running an online study session via YouTube Live on Sunday, October 27th from 5:00 to 7:00 PM, and you can either go directly to the livestream page by clicking this link, or you can watch the archived video version embedded below when you have the time.

Just remember that in order for this to work, you need to submit questions for me to answer– so please check over your Unit Two Study Guide: Democracy and the United Kingdom and see if there are terms I can better explain for you, or if there are concepts you’ve missed entirely.  You can submit your questions via the chat feature on YouTube if you’re watching live, or send them in for me to look over via Remind if you can’t participate during the planned time, but still need help.  I’ll run the study session for two hours– OR until the questions run out.  Whichever happens first, okay?  So that means that if there are only fifteen minutes of questions, you get a fifteen minute study session from me.

And because I’m a music nerd, I’ve made you a study playlist of British political music, so enjoy. Or don’t.  Whatever, I’m not here to police your musical tastes.

Current Event: United Kingdom!

Depending on your class meeting schedule, you will be required to complete your first current event assignment by the 25th or 29th of October.  In order to do this, you will need to use one of the following British publications:

Find an article in one of those publications that is on a recent event or significant topic related to politics and government in the United Kingdom– preferably, one of interest to you.  Read the article carefully (consider printing it out so that you can annotate it, perhaps), and the complete the form below.  You will need to provide the URL to your article, so make sure you don’t lose it!  You may want to type your answers into a Word doc before copying and pasting your answers into the Google form below, just in case you have difficulties with submitting your response.

NOTE: If you have limited Internet access, please let me know ASAP so that I can give you a hardcopy of the questions you will need to answer.

Click here to access the current event form!