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Intro to the Russian Revolution

Day Two of the Animal Farm Unit

Jean Prokott

on 20 September 2012

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Transcript of Intro to the Russian Revolution

World War I Introduction to the RUSSIAN REVOLUTION Wait...what is this, history class? Animal Farm is an ALLEGORY of the Russian Revolution, so in order to understand the purpose and story of the text, you gotta know the basic facts of the Revolution. an allegory is a device in which
characters symbolize or represent
bigger ideas or concepts.

In a way, it's an extended metaphor.
The key characters in Animal Farm
symbolize the big players of the real-life
Russian Revolution. 1905 The influence of Karl Marx 1917 Feb.--July here's a timeline This stud is Czar Nicholas II. He came into power in 1894. in 1904-1905, Russia
fought a war with Japan. the country did not favor the war,
and Russia got the tar kicked out of it during those two years. because the war left the country in unfavorable conditions (11 hour work days, grueling factory work, food shortages and starvation because of the country's poverty)
many of Russian workers revolted. Hey. You'd be pissed, too. on one occasion, the workers went
to the Czar's palace with a petition, and
were met with gunfire by the guards. Some
reports say 1000 people were killed. This is known as BLOODY SUNDAY
& considered the start of the active
revolution. 1914 Czar Nicholas thought that Russia's participation in WWI would help Russian
prestige after it's butt-kicking by Japan in the war from 1905. but instead of bringing unity, the war did the opposite. I will fight! so, Nicholas went to the battlelines
to fight with his soldiers to help morale. but that meant while he was gone,
the home front was in charge of his wife, Alexandra,
whom the Russians didn't exactly trust. She was part German, and one of her aides, Rasputin (who was hired to cure her son's hemophilia), was scrutinized by the public. (I mean, look at him.) These further issues with Czar Nicholas' reign caused the Russian public to revolt. the public was starving. Soldiers were sent to front lines without guns, and the public blamed their king. The February Revolution on 28 Feb., Nicholas was asked to abdicate (give up) the throne. on 27 Feb., at least 200,000 workers
were on strike. Soldiers even joined them. a provisional government took over. on 8 July, a guy named Alexander Kerensky became leader of the provisional government, but he refused to get Russia out of WWI, which still upset the country. let's stay in the war! on 19 July, Kerensky ordered the arrest of the BOLSHEVIK PARTY because they protested against the war. The Bolsheviks were essentially the Communist Party of Russia. hey! you are under arrest for protesting my leadership! Okay, time out. before you understand the Bolsheviks, you should know the influence of Karl Marx. Karl Marx is known as the father of communism. in 1847, way before any of this went down, Marx wrote the Communist Manifesto, which is essentially a treatise of his beliefs. People who follow these ideals are called Marxists. Marx is pretty complicated, but here are some key ideas to keep in mind: he believed private ownership
of land should be abolished. he believed in equal distribution
of wealth--a classless system. he believed in a communal life
where everyone shares prosperity. Workers
of the World, Unite! Marx died before all of this
happened, but his ideas were realized
by Vladimir Lenin, who was the LEADER
of this Bolshevik Party that Kerensky
has just arrested. This leads to the October
Revolution. 1917 October The October Revolution So, Lenin led the Bolsheviks in the October Revolution to oust Kerensky. The communist party was behind him and his Marxist ideals. Lenin is head of the Bolshevik Party. it is rumored that while in power, Lenin had the Royal Family killed. (Anastasia, 1997, familiar?) 1917--1922 Russian Civil War Lenin changes Russia's name to USSR: Union of Soviet Socialist Republics After the Bolsheviks, now called The Communists (the REDS) took control, anti-communist enemies (the WHITES) fought within the country. (the U.S. supported the white side and opposed communism) ironically, peasants suffered the most. To support the end of the war (which the REDS won) Lenin came up with NEP: New Economic Plan. The tenets were: reduce food requirements from peasants regulate supply/production (limited capitalism) make bank to industrialize Russia lay foundation to get ready for full-on Communism (to get Russia ready for world wide Communist Revolution) 1924 Lenin's Death & New Leadership in 1924 Lenin, Russia's charismatic leader, died, and the Communist Party needed a new leader. his body is still preserved--you can go see it. Field trip to Moscow? there were two contenders: Leon Trotsky! Josef Stalin! one of the leaders of the October Revolution like Lenin, a brilliant public speaker former leader of foreign affairs favored World Revolution opposed Trotsky didn't exactly follow Marx played administrative role during the October Revolution eventually gained control of the Communist Party in 1928, replaced Lenin's plan with a 5-year-plan, and believed in Communism in one country.... ...but we'll talk about his horrible, violent, oppressive rise to power later... your players Czar Nicholas as Farmer Jones Old Major as Marx-Lenin Leon Trotsky Snowball as Napoleon as Stalin ...and more to come... before we go, two more definitions about Animal Farm: FABLE SATIRE animals, plants, inanimate objects are given human like qualities that lead to a moral at the end of the story writing (often humorours) that serves, ironically, as social criticism--society's shortcomings are ridiculed and made fun of to make a point or shame society into improvement
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