and the Collapse of Communism in Europe

Saint Mary's College
Orchard Lake, Michigan

Polish 324

Department of Polish Studies
Winter 1992
Instructor: Dr. Janusz K. Wrobel

Required Readings:

Milton F. Goldman, Global Studies: Soviet Union & Eastern Europe
Timothy Garton Ash, The Magic Lantern: The Revolution of 89 Witnessed in Warsaw, Budapest, Berlin and Prague
Janelle Rohr, ed., Eastern Europe: Opposing Viewpoints
Zbigniew Brzezinski, The Grand Failure: The Birth and Death of Communism in the Twentieth Century
Daily reading of either the Detroit Free Press or the Detroit News for news about Poland, the Russian Federation and Eastern Europe. Articles may be brought to the class for discussion.

Course Requirements:

Attendance. This is a lecture-discussion class, therefore attendance is mandatory. Since your participation in class activities counts toward the final grade, only one unexcused absence is allowed.
Reading the material assigned in Required Readings.
Familiarity with material presented in class.
Participation in class discussions.
Twelve typed one-page, single-spaced essays (due one week after the presentation of a topic) will be assigned; of these, you are required to turn in ten.
Take-home map quiz, due February 5.
Mid-term and final examinations.

Course Outline and Reading Assignments:

Jan. 15 Introduction: Russia
Jan. 22 Communist Ideology
Reading: Global Studies, 4-13; The Grand Failure, Ch. l
Topic: Roots of the Communist System
Jan. 29 The Imposition of Communism on Eastern Europe
Reading: Global Studies, 73-92; Eastern Europe, Ch. 1
Topic: How communism was imposed on Eastern Europe: discuss similarities and differences in particular countries
Feb. 5 "We Are All up to Our Elbows in Blood": Stalinism
Reading: The Grand Failure, Ch. 2, 3
Map Quiz
Topic: Life under Stalinist terror
Feb. 12 Anti-Soviet Upheavals in Eastern Europe in 1953,1956 and 1968
Reading: ,Global Studies, 108, 114-120, 103-106
Topic: Hungary in 1956
Feb. 19 Polish Social Unrest in the 1970s
Reading: Global Studies, 121-130; The Grand Failure, Ch. 9
Topic: Roots of Solidarity
Feb. 26 Mid-term Exam
March 11 Solidarity's Contribution to the Collapse of Communism in Europe
Reading: The Magic Lantern, pp. 11-77, 131-156; The Grand Failure, Ch. 10-12
Topic: How did Solidarity contribute to the collapse of communism in Europe?
March 18 The Polish Church's Contribution to the Collapse of Communism in Europe
Topic: Discuss how the Polish Church contributed to the collapse of communism in Europe
March 25 The Upheaval of Nations - Europe in1989
Reading: The Magic Lantern
Topic: Compare two Czecho-Slovak Revolutions: The Prague Spring of 1968 and the Velvet Revolution of 1989
April 1 New Poland - Old Obstacles
Topic: Discuss the Polish conflict between democratic aspirations and communist legacy
April 8 What Economic Policies Should Eastern Europe Adopt?
Reading: Eastern Europe, Ch. 3
Topic: According to your opinion, what economic policies are the best for Eastern Europe?
April 15 Is European Unification Possible?
Reading: Eastern Europe, Ch. 5; Global Studies, 107-112, 137-143
Topic: Discuss the basic difficulties in the unification of Europe
April 22 Perspectives of the Commonwealth of Independent States and Eastern Europe
Reading: Eastern Europe, Ch. 2; The Grand Failure, Ch. 21-24
April 29 Final Exam

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The Sarmatian Review
Last updated 04/17/97