East European History

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  TOPIC TWO -- THE END OF COMMUNISM

Bucharest, December 1989

READINGS:

Longworth, chapter 1

Stokes

  • "Revolution of 1989", pp. 242-243
  • "The Opening of the Berlin Wall", pp. 244-248
  • Gorbachev, "A Common European Home", pp. 290-291

OUTLINE:

I. When did the end of communism begin?

II. What made it possible?

  • Gorbachev's perestroika and glasnost
  • Poland and Hungary drift toward democracy

III. How did the Romanian revolution differ from the others?

 Fall of the Berlin Wall

 Velvet Revolution, Prague 1989

DISCUSSION QUESTIONS

1. How does Gorbachev in "A Common European Home" explain his initiatives toward Western and Eastern Europe and the United States?

2. What were the links in the chain reaction that brought down the Berlin Wall? That brought down the Bulgarian, Czech, and Romanian governments?

3. Give your own account of the causes of the end of communism.

4. What did "People Power" add to your understanding of the 1989 revolutions?

 FILMS AND ASSIGNMENTS:

Films:

The Fall of Communism

People's Century: People Power

Assignments:

Short Essay Assignment #2:

  • Write a one-page essay describing the differences between the Czechoslovak "velvet revolution" and the violent events in Romania in 1989. Due October 6, 1998

Although this picture was taken from a very respectable news service, they still spelled Ceausescu's name wrong. It is spelled with an s, not a c.  

Mostar after the shelling in May 1994.

INTERESTING WEB SITES:

Transcript of the Ceausescu Trial, December 1989

Czech Website Commemorating the 1989 Velvet Revolution

Radio Pragues' History Online - The Velvet Revolution

The Velvet Revolution: A Diary

Microchronicles Voices of Dissent: The Velvet Revolution

 

 

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