History 346

HIST 346
Soviet Russia

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HIST 346
Soviet Russia
Three hours lecture: (3)

Prerequisite: Three hours of History at the 100 level.

Russian history during the Soviet era. Domestic and diplomatic policies are examined as well as Russian social conditions in the 20th Century.

Detailed Description of Content of Course
I. Background to Revolution
•    Bolshevik Preparation
•    Other Revolutionary Movements
•    Status of Czarist system
•    Constitutional monarchy
•    World War I
•    The February  Revolution
II. The Bolshevik Revolution
•    Chronology of events
•    Ideology
•    The separate peace
•    Civil War
•    Foreign relations
•    War communism to NEP
•    Economic debates of the 1920s
•    Soviet society during the 1920s
IV. Stalin's Revolution
•    Struggle for succession
•    Elimination of opposition
•    The first five year plan--collectivization and industrialization
•    The early purges
V. The 1930s
•    Second five year plan
•    Economic developments
•    The Great Purge
•    The 1936 Constitution
•    Foreign Policy
•    Prelude to WWII
VI. The Great Patriotic War
•    Major events and chronology
•    Society during the War
•    Relations with the allies
VII. End of the Stalin Era
•    Post war recovery
•    Ideological developments
•    The Cold War
•    Eastern Europe
VIII. The USSR after Stalin
•    Khrushchev and the Thaw
•    Brezhnev and Stagnation
•    Gorbachev
•    Fall of the Soviet Union
•    Post soviet developments.

Detailed Description of Conduct of Course

A lecture format predominates with time set aside for discussion. Every effort is made to provide visual images (art, architecture, videos) and conceptual explanations. Assignments include: writings based on the course readings, book reviews, primary source analyses.

Goals and Objectives of the Course

a. Students will understand the causes and results of the Russian revolutions as well as the further developments under Stalin and later leaders. They will be able to discuss the chronology, biography and historical issues of the era.
b. Students will practice thinking critically and analytically about historical issues, acquire a broader knowledge and deeper understanding of pertinent historical events and processes, and cultivate a familiarity with the concepts of historical argument and interpretation.
c. Students will develop disciplinary research skills by designing strategies to locate and analyze primary and secondary source evidence, processing and organizing the resultant data, and composing proper citation and bibliographical entries.
d. Students will apply their critical thinking, research, and compositional skills to the creation and presentation of thesis driven essays that discuss, for example, historical social, economic, political, and/or cultural developments and that address issues such as the causes and consequences of historical change and continuity.
e. Students will also gain an appreciation of the problems of cross-cultural historical interpretation.

Assessment Measures

Knowledge and understanding of the material covered in this course will be measured using an array of assessment tools that may include, among other things, class attendance and participation, written examinations, formal writing assignments of various types, and informal writing assignments. All exercises are designed to expand the student's ability to evaluate historical events and to develop his or her ability to compose persuasive arguments.

Other Course Information


Review and Approval
Date Action Reviewed by
October  2010 Reviewed and Approved by Sharon Roger Hepburn