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The Cultures of Eastern Europe Chapter 16, Section 2.

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1 The Cultures of Eastern Europe Chapter 16, Section 2

2 Setting the Scene Look at an old map of Europe and you may notice something odd. Poland is missing. From 1795 to 1918, Poland disappeared from the maps of Europe. Lying defenseless in the Northern European Plain, the country was invaded and divided among Russia, Austria and Prussia (Germany.)

3 Movement Movement throughout much of Eastern Europe is easy. For thousands of years, groups have migrated across this region. Migration is the movement of a group from one place to another. There were many reasons to migrate; immigrants often moved for food, safety from enemies, or to conquer a region.

4 Movement Many immigrants have fled from a place where religious or political persecution has put them in danger. An immigrant is a person who moves to one country from another. Bosnian Refugees

5 Ethnic Groups of Eastern Europe Among the groups that migrated to Eastern Europe were the Slavs. They first lived in the mountains of Slovakia, but later spread across nearly all of Eastern Europe and much of Russia. Today, they are the major ethnic group of the region. –An Ethnic Group shares a common language, religion and culture.

6 Slavic Culture Although Slavs still share the same customs, they now have different languages and live in different nations. 2,000 years ago, there was a single Slavic language, but as time went on, different Slavic groups developed 10 different languages.

7 Slavic Culture The customs of Slavs have changed slowly because most Slavs live in rural areas. Customs change more slowly in the countryside. Most Slavs work as farmers, which is a very traditional way to live.

8 Other Ethnic Groups Many other ethnic groups live in Eastern Europe. Nearly all people living in Hungary belong to the Magyars ethnic group. Many other places have named their country after the ethnic group living there, including Albania, Romania and Bulgaria. Germans also live in many East European countries. Traditional Magyar wedding clothes

9 Ethnic Conflict In most Eastern European countries, different ethnic groups live together in harmony. However, this isn’t always the case. For most of the 1900’s, Czechoslovakia was a single democratic country, but after World War II, the Soviet Union controlled the country. Overnight, the Communist Party took over the country. Soviet tanks enter Czechoslovakia in 1968

10 A Peaceful Division From the 1960’s to the 80’s, students and writers protested Soviet rule; many were imprisoned for demanding a return to democracy. In 1989, the Communist Party gave up power and cooperated with democratic groups. This (mostly) nonviolent change in government is called the Velvet Revolution.

11 The Split The Czechs and Slavs disagreed about how to run their new democratic government. In 1993, they decided to peacefully divide Czechoslovakia into two new countries. The Czech Republic and Slovakia were peacefully born that year, as each ethnic group ran its own country.

12 Violent Division Most of the people in Yugoslavia were also Slavs. However, there were many other ethnic groups in the country, and this led to the break up of Yugoslavia in 1991. Four new countries were formed and a war within the region quickly broke out. Thousands of people were killed, mostly Bosnians.

13 Violent Division In 1995, countries including the U.S. sent military forces to restore peace to the region. They found evidence of Ethnic Cleansing, the murder of thousands of people because of their ethnicity. Violence broke out again in 1999 between Serbs and ethnic Albanians who lived in Kosovo, Serbia. Again, a peace was forced, but tensions remain high there today.

14 The Cultures of Russia Chapter 16, Section 3

15 Setting the Scene For many years Russians passing a church in Russia never heard a choir or religious service inside. The Communist government of the Soviet Union owned the churches and used them as factories. In the Soviet Union, people were not allowed to practice their religion.

16 Setting the Scene In 1991, the Soviet Union collapsed. Two years later, Russians who had never given up their faith could go to church again. In recent years, thousands of churches in Russia reopened their doors. This is one way Russian people are reclaiming their culture.

17 Russia’s Ethnic Mix The Russian Orthodox religion, a Christian religion, has been a powerful bond between Russians for hundreds of years. It is part of the Russian heritage. Heritage is the customs and practices that are passed from one generation to the next.

18 Ethnic Groups More than 80 percent of Russians belong to the ethnic group of Russian Slavs. They generally speak Russian and live in the western part of the country

19 Ethnic Groups Besides the Slavs, more than 75 different ethnic groups live in Russia: –The Finns (Ural Mountains) –The Turks (Caucus Mountains) –Armenians (Southern Russia) –Mongolians (Eastern Russia) –Yakuts (Siberia) These groups speak their own languages and follow different religions. Muslims make up Russia’s second largest religion.

20 United or Divided? When the U.S.S.R. broke apart, many non-Russian ethnic groups broke away and formed their own countries. Since that time other ethnic groups have tried to break ties with Russia.

21 United or Divided? There are a number of reasons why non- Russian ethnic groups have broken away from Russia. –Many ethnic groups were intolerant other groups and had always wanted their own country. –Some ethnic groups had their own countries before the Soviets took over their governments at the end of World War II. They wanted to rule themselves again. –Some ethnic groups were treated poorly by the Soviets and wanted to break away from Russia for good.

22 United or Divided? The new Russian government has tried to keep the country unified by giving ethnic groups the right to rule themselves. However, when groups call for complete independence, Russia sends armies to repress, or put down, those groups.

23 Russian Culture Russia has produced many great artists, thinkers and writers. Novelist Leo Tolstoy wrote powerful stories of life in 1800’s Russia. Tchaikovsky composed moving classical music like the Nutcracker.

24 Communist Art Under communism, the creation of great new works of art nearly came to a halt. The Soviet government believed the purpose of art was to glorify communism. The government did approve propaganda – the spread of ideas designed to support and idea (like communism.) With the fall of communism, Russians were once again allowed to create their own art.

25 Elegant St. Petersburg The center of Russian culture is the city of St. Petersburg, which mixes European and Slavic culture. St. Petersburg’s greatest sight, the Winter Palace, has 1,000 rooms including a museum. It was the winter home of the Czars.

26 Education in Russia One of the few strengths of the old Soviet Union was its free public education. Under the Soviets the number of Russians who could read jumped from 40% to nearly 100%. The new Russia has continued this, but have new up-to-date courses without Soviet propaganda.

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