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Revolutions of 1989

  This assignment gives you the opportunity to analyze and interpret primarysources available on the internet. This is historians work: to critically read andanalyze speeches,…

  This assignment gives you the opportunity to analyze and interpret primarysources available on the internet. This is historians work: to critically read andanalyze speeches, diaries, government documents, letters, newspaper articles, etc.to understand the motives and conduct of people in the past. The final product ofyour reading and analysis will be a 2-4 page single-spaced essay (minimum: 2 full 1.0-spaced pages, 1 inch margins, PLUS bibliography).Two KEYs to doing well on this assignment: 1) find interesting primary sourcesfrom the era 1989-90 or so, and 2) thoughtfully analyze them, displaying coolbits of what you find (in short quotes and paraphrasing). This is the essence ofHISTORICAL RESEARCH: using a variety of sources to craft an original thesisthat you then support with short quotes and evidence from those sources.   As you read, consider some of the themes and motivations for the fall ofcommunism in Eastern Europe. Why did the people want change? What do the primarysources teach us about how people lived under the communist regime? What was uniqueabout life behind the iron curtain? Why did people oppose Communist Party rule in theircountry? What were their main complaints? What was missing from their lives or what didthey want that they couldnt have under the restrictions of communist rule?  To give your essay a clear focus, I recommend that you choose a specific EastEuropean country for your focus: Bulgaria, Romania, East Germany,Czechoslovakia, Hungary, Yugoslavia, Poland, or the USSR/Soviet Union (eventhough that occurred in 1991).  Your essay must include reference to at least 3 different primary sources.Thats the minimum. The best essays will use 4-6 different primary sources because in manycases 3 will not be enough to craft a thesis and support it with short quotes andparaphrasing.

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