One feature that stands out in most accounts of historical events is a broad chasm between ideals and realities
One feature that stands out in most accounts of historical events is a broad chasm between ideals and realities. Our beliefs about what it is right to do are typically quite different from the behaviors in which we engage in our private and public lives. In this assignment, I want you to consider the gap between ideals and realities as it appears in accounts of World War I and the Bolshevik Revolution. World War I was waged by nations convinced that they fought to further the ideals of civilization and democracy. Panikkar and Reed give us a glimpse of the realities – what the war looked like from a Third World perspective and from the battlefields. The Bolsheviks imagined that their seizure of power would inaugurate a regime of democracy, equality, and international solidarity. Freeman believes those ideals were being realized in the Soviet Union during the 1920s. Fischer once shared that belief but changed his mind and testifies to what he now sees as the bitter realities of the Soviet experiment.
Drawing on these readings and relevant lectures (which provide valuable background to these events), compare the ideals for which people fought in the war and the revolution with such realities as seem to contradict or undermine those ideals. Be sure to address both sides of the paradox (ideals and realities) and to support your argument with specific insights and observations made by the four writers and the lecturer.
2-3 pages, double-spaced, 12pt font, 1” margins
use course material only
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