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Unformatted text preview: PreIB 10: World Literature and Composition
Block day, January 20th, 21st Block Day, January 20 , 21
th st Today's Objectives: Students will continue to gain background knowledge to aid in their understanding of and reading of the text. research strategies. Students will practice planning and Block Day, January 20 , 21
Today's Agenda: st Hand back Nonfiction Journals (P. 3 needs name notecards) Journey Through the Gulag Research Project Signup Meet Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn and Research Group Planning Time BREAK Writing Lab: Research Block Day, January 20 , 21
Note to absent Students: st You will need to pick one of the research topics and research it on your own. Plan to find enough information to give a 23 minute presentation on Monday, and remember to cite your sources! Check with classmates about background notes you missed There is some interesting and helpful stuff about the Gulags. Excursion to Gulag
Special Thanks to Mrs. Nieb for providing us with this interesting photo tour! Gulag stands for "Chief Administration of Corrective Labor Camps." The system of Stalin's labor camps was the most monstrous death factory in all history, with "production" exceeding even WWII's Holocaust. Around 40 million died in Gulag labor camps. Camps were located in Taiga, a huge forest in Russian Siberia. Now, all roads are overgrown and only a helicopter can reach those sites. Camps have been abandoned since summer 1953, when Stalin died. A general amnesty was announced and everyone, inmates and guards alike, quickly fled the area. Roosevelt observed that capitalism is unequally divided riches while socialism is equally divided poverty. Gulag prison life meant an equal distribution of death among both rich and poor, old and young. Death played no favorites and came readily to all, regardless of gender, beliefs, or nationality. People lived in wooden barracks. Political prisoners, socalled "enemies of the state," and criminals were all kept together. "Enemies" were taken mostly from the ranks of prominent, intelligent, and cultured people. Under the inhuman conditions of the camps, the civilized and cultural folks appeared to be less equipped for survival than the criminals. To establish their iron rule, communists thought they had to rid society of all thinking and honest people. Such types are always a threat to despotic regimes. They almost succeeded: in twenty years of repression they rooted out many values, beliefs, and traditions that had been cultivated for centuries. After they killed the brains of the nation, the Soviet Union became a kind of laughingstock; a national bully that everyone feared because it was "stupid and fat with nukes." Like a mindless giant, the Soviet Union was incapable of anything intelligent or creative. Having killed off all its wise and educated people, the Soviet Union was only capable of setting examples to the rest of the world of how things should not be done. Everyone who tried to escape the Gulag had almost no chance of surviving. They had to walk hundreds of kms through forested wilderness... the direction hardly mattered because the people had nowhere to run. The whole country was one big prison labor camp. Bottle of vodka a legal drug that guards often sold, illegally, to prisoners. Nothing is left inside this oncecrowded barrack. There were two layers of plank beds with more than 120 convicts living in each barrack. Most historians believe that repressions began in 1932 and peaked in 1937. Incoming traffic only slowed down in those camps with the beginning of Great Patriotic War in 1941. Why? Gulag convicts could instead choose to join army penal battalions and risk death under bullets. In 1945 WWII ended and millions of such convicts returned to the camps. The repressions actually lasted until Stalin's death in 1953. This is punishment cell. Feeding-rack. People were dying from exhaustion, starvation, hard labor... MarxismLeninism was based on the theory of evolution which teaches that through millions of years, labor had helped the apeman to became human... Here, in camps, they proved that this process is reversible. With hard labor and little food, they were able to turn human beings back into animals in just in a few months... "I did my plan and you?" asks the socialist "poster boy." Communists have always been compulsive planners, even planning exactly how many people were to be sent to those camps. Each region had to report the count of "enemies" detained, and if the regional leaders didn't reach their quotas, then they became "enemies" themselves and joined those camps. This is one of many bridges built by convicts. It was never used because Stalin died before completion. They have built 900 kms out of 1263 that was needed to connect two towns, Igarka and Salechard. 300,000 convicts died while building this road within years 19491953. Now this road, like so many others, leads to nowhere. Steam locomotives of that time. Work here essentially stopped when authorities decided to start playing the music of national mourning on the radio. This music played nonstop all day, convincing people more and more that the death was their own. Soon both convicts and guards cared only to leave and return to their homes. No caring remained to fix either barbed wire or locomotives. It is a place, where before revolution, young Joseph Stalin, who was known as Koba, had spent a few years of his prison sentence. Later, it became a big transit prison, with a museum that everyone called "Stalin's Pantheon." It has been abandoned since 1953. May these photos remind us that no State can build prosperity upon the bones of its own citizens, and if all who have eyes to see are tortured and killed, then the rest will live in a kingdom of the blind for a very long time. Block Day, January 20,21
Your Possible Research Topics: Joseph Stalin Alexsandr Solzhenitsyn (this will be a small group, looking to supplement the PowerPoint from Tuesday and the reading you have already completed) Prisoners' lives before and after prison Political climate in Russia and Publication during postStalin politics. Communism Gulags/Women in Gulags Terrain/Geography of Russia and the Taiga Collective Farms (Kolkhoz) Any other topic you think would be applicable and interesting?? Let me know! **Choose your top choice and come sign up with me Block Day, January 20,21
In your research groups, complete the following 2 tasks: Summarize the "Meet Aleksandr" article you read for homework. What did you learn? How do you think Solzhenitsyn's experiences effected his writing? Does this change the way you approach the book (why/why not?)? Lay out a plan of action for when you go to the writing lab. Who will research what? How will you make sure you record all of your sources? How do you determine what info is important and what info is not? How will you carry out your class period tomorrow?? (Please have one group member write this plan of action down answer all of the questions and turn it in to me before break!!) Block Day, January 20 , 21
th st Homework for Tonight: Any additional research for your presentation. Bring Materials to work on for your Presentation! (Computers, etc.) On Deck for Friday: Work day for research groups to finalize presentation plans. Presentations are on MONDAY!! ...
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This note was uploaded on 05/16/2011 for the course LIT 113 taught by Professor Howard during the Spring '09 term at Grand Valley State University.
- Spring '09
- World Literature