Pride, Fear, and Respect – National Identity and Twentieth Century International History

Amy Strong, History, North Mecklenburg High School



At the end of this unit I want my students to understand the interplay between state power and people power in creating a national identity.  My students will read a variety of scholarly sources and primary documents to create their own understanding of how different single-party states create a sense of identity.  We will study a variety of states including; 1910-1940 Mexico, the belligerent states of the First World War, Stalin’s Soviet Union, Hitler’s Germany, and Mao’s China.  Each of these state apparatuses aimed to achieve cohesion but they each used very different methods. However, through these methods students will find themes, primarily that of education and propaganda as chief vehicles to reach the masses.  We will also find ways that the masses resisted imposition of ideas.  This unit is written for higher level high school students studying international history, though it can be modified for Freshmen World History.


As a teacher of twentieth century international history, I cannot count the number of students who have asked me to explain the Holocaust. No matter how many stabs I take at it, I cannot give a satisfying answer that leaves the class understanding the psyche of a nation that would allow for the annihilation of an entire race.

This unit seeks to lead the students to create an explanation of their own, not only for the actions of the German people during the Holocaust, but also for the populations of Russia (and the Soviet Union), China, Cuba, Argentina, Mexico, and the United States during the most trying times of these nations in the twentieth century. By approaching each era through an understanding of nationalism and the tools used by heads of state, students will have the opportunity to understand the power – and limitations – individuals and state ministries have to shape public opinion and create a group consciousness. Students will use sources that lead them to understand the many opportunities the state creates to instill a particular national identity through manipulation of common memories and shared identity. By the end of this year-long unit, students should understand the role of individual identity in consciously choosing to follow, resist, or avoid the power of the state and the ways in which state powers react to the pressure from the masses.

This unit will be used with Senior International Baccalaureate (IB) students. Senior level IB courses are designed as college preparatory courses and the students are expected to perform tasks (practically and cognitively) typically reserved for college Sophomores. Therefore, the readings and assignments will have to be modified for the general population of students. The unit presented below is formed around the International Baccalaureate Organization’s (IBO) History – Route Two Higher Level standards.


The School

I teach Senior IB History at an urban, partial magnet high school. The school has recently experienced a dramatic population loss, decreasing from 3,200 students in 2007 to 1,600 students for the 2011-2012 school year. At the same time, due to district-wide budget cuts, class sizes have increased. The IB program is designed as a magnet to attract students from outside the neighborhood attendance zone to the school. Participation in the IB program is entirely voluntary on the part of the student.

The Students

This unit will be used in two classes of IB Seniors, one with 35 students, the other with 9. The discrepancy in class size is driven by a schedule conflict with another required course. IB Seniors are highly motivated learners, meaning they are interested in earning good grades to get into the college of their choice but they are also inquisitive and driven to learn for learning’s sake. This profile of student drives the choices I make for assignments within the unit. IB Seniors are capable of, and really crave, highly intellectual discussion. This unit is intended to capitalize on this characteristic, as well as provide opportunities to move students to a higher level of thought and discourse.

The Course and the IB Programme Explained

In an attempt to provide context for jargon and choices that will show up throughout the unit, I am providing a nuts-and-bolts explanation of the “IB experience”. Senior IB History is the second half of a two-year course, titled by the IBO (what does IBO stand for?) “History of the Americas – Route two, Higher Level”. What this really means is, IB Diploma students are required to choose three courses to take at Higher Level and three courses to take at Standard Level. These six courses are all designed to be taught over two years, typically Junior and Senior years. At the end of the second year of any given course, students sit for the IB exam. The IB exam is written by the IBO and graded (marked) by IB examiners worldwide. The classroom teacher has no hand in creating or grading the IB exams.

For History, the IB exam consists of three different “papers”. Students have the option of taking History as a Standard Level exam; these students only sit for two papers. Standard Level History is not offered at my school. Paper Three makes the exam a Higher Level course. Paper Three is the regional option, meaning a school chooses in which region they want to specialize. Our school has chosen The Americas since students are required by the state to take US History as Juniors. Since all students take US History, Seniors are prepared for the Higher Level exam by default.

Papers One and Two are the responsibility of the Senior teacher, me. Paper One is the “Prescribed Subject;” it is essentially a document-based paper. Schools know from the start of the year the general topic of the paper; in our case it is “Peacemaking, Peacekeeping – 1918-1936”. I, as the teacher, am charged with preparing the students to be able to read and analyze five documents on a to-be determined sub-topic of the interwar period. Nationalism and national identity come into play with this topic as European nations reformed and rethought their identities following the Great War. Potential subtopics include the League of Nations, the Mandate System, the Paris Peace Conference, and the Ruhr Crisis among others.

Paper Two addresses Twentieth Century Topics. Teachers have a choice of general areas of focus, but students must be well versed in two of five areas in order to be prepared to answer two essay questions. The majority of the year is spent preparing students for this Paper. The topics we address are “Causes, Practices, and Effects of War” and “Origins and Development of Authoritarian and Single Party States”. To address these two topics we study World War One and Two, Hitler, Stalin, Mao, Castro, and Peron. In order to supplement students’ US History knowledge we also study the Mexican Revolution. These subjects can appear unrelated; however, nationalism and the creation of a national identity are underlying themes. Using nationalism as a yearlong theme will serve to create coherence and hopefully more meaningful connections for the student.

Content Background

For the purposes of this unit, nationalism will be defined as a shared group identity based on a common culture, language, ethnicity, and/or history. This unit uses a variety of approaches to show how individuals and groups take advantage of, and manipulate, the emotions raised by nationalism to gain power. As this unit focuses on power relationships, the tools of the state will be a central focus. The state is defined as the autonomous governing body. Most of this unit will first explore the role of the head of state (Stalin, Hitler, Mao, etc.) then examine the various agencies and policies the state used to exert control over the masses.

I have a particular interest in the role education and literacy play in creating a unified identity. Widespread literacy is a convenient way to get the same message to a large number of people spread over a vast geographic area. Public schooling provides unique opportunities to influence the psyche of the nation. Through public education, children can be introduced to government policies and beliefs from an early age through an unthreatening medium. Children are in school for a significant chunk of their waking hours, leaving little time for anti-government messages. Children also bring home their ideas, allowing the public message to permeate the private sphere of the home. The use of programs like the Hitler Youth and Young Pioneers (Stalin’s youth program) ensure an even greater amount of time is spent in government sanctioned pursuits. Through various mediums of education, governments of single-party states can directly dictate the majority of a child’s daily pursuits, resulting in control of intake of information, and therefore the molding of young minds. Students consume government policy at school officially; they then continue to consume government propaganda in their daily lives through government-controlled media (posters, radio, television, newspapers).

Of course, there were ways around government “brainwashing”. This other facet of power is equally interesting. I hope this unit will lead students to understand that individuals have much greater agency of thought and action than their governments would like.

Content Objectives

The purpose of this unit is to lead students to draw their own connections among Nationalism, National Identity, and Power. The unit will serve as a common theme to unify seemingly disparate topics. The IB History curriculum asks that students be well versed in the authoritarian states led by Hitler, Mao, Stalin, Castro, and Peron. Students are also expected to master the causes, practices, and effects of the first and second world wars as well as the Mexican Revolution. Linking all of these topics in a meaningful manner is a challenge; however, nationalism serves as a common motif, which will allow students to place seemingly unrelated events in historical context.

Students will recognize the relationship between the creation of national identity and the use of a variety of propaganda including education, music, theatre, cinema, art, media, and gossip. Through the study of propaganda, students will also identify the fluid nature of national identity and the use of nationalism as a tool of power.

Students will analyze public and private responses to vehicles of power to decide the extent to which individuals “buy in” to large-scale imposition of national identity, as well as the corresponding power of the masses to react to and reform the structures imposed on them.

Over the course of the unit students will learn to read primary and secondary sources more critically. These sources will include popular media, legislative documents, political manifestos, periodicals, historical monographs, and scholarly journal articles. Students will also improve their analytical writing skills, composing several essays in which they understand events within the broader historical context and carve out their own niche within the existing historiography.

Students will be introduced to common historiographical approaches to major events and will become practitioners of history through a medium of their choice, be it social, cultural, political, or economic history.

By the end of the unit (which will be the end of the academic year), students will be able to confidently take a stand within the existing historiography of each of the eras studied. They will be able to analyze the role of the nation in shaping these events, while distinguishing the impact of national identity versus state government. Students will be familiar with significant primary and secondary sources within each field and will be able to use these to either support or counter their own original arguments.

Teaching Strategies (a unified, coherent teaching plan for those objectives)

The Great War

Any study of the First World War must begin with a conversation about the foundation of nationalism. I will start the year with an inquiry into the formation of the “organic” nations of Europe (England, France, Germany, Italy, Russia). Through a small research assignment students will discover the complexity of local versus national identity in the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries. We will investigate the role of Napoleon in the creation of an “us versus them” mentality and will review the incestuous nature of nineteenth and early twentieth century European diplomacy. A class discussion on the role and constituency of the nation versus state will also contribute to the understanding of ethnic nationalism in the Balkans and the foundations for future rivalries in the interwar period. This part of the unit will serve as the foundation of a yearlong conversation by laying out the background knowledge and vocabulary students will use in discussing single-party state leaders.

In-class notes and out-of-class readings will drive the study of the actual war. The readings that will be assigned include an excerpt from the book, 14-18: Understanding the Great War. The chapter excerpted is the first where the historiography of the First World War is discussed. This chapter contributes to this unit as it delineates between different national historiographies of the First World War. For instance, French histories of the conflict tend to avoid direct discussion of brutality and personalized violence. German histories are more confrontational about controversial and gory topics. American historians tend to be more objective about the causes and outcome of the conflict. This discussion contributes to the students’ understanding that history is written by people who bring their own life experiences to their writing. These life experiences include their national identity, so history is tainted by nationalism (whether in the writing or reading). This reading allows us to have a discussion about the values and limitations of this “taint”. It is important for students to be aware from which perspective their readings were written, and this awareness should extend beyond their history books.

To conclude their study of this period, students will be assigned short excerpts from three different readings, one by a German diplomat writing in 1920 (Max Montgelas), one by an American diplomat writing in the mid 1920s (Sidney Bradshaw Fay), and one by a German historian writing in the 1960s (Immanuel Geiss). Each author writes about who deserves blame for the First World War. Each author has a very different perspective that is influenced by their lived experiences as well as their access to sources. Montgelas assigns blame to all powers except Germany, Fay assigns blame fairly equally across powers, Geiss assigns blame solely to Germany. Analyzing these articles will give the students practice in critically reading all sources and will provide a basis for our discussion of the meta-narrative coming up in the study of the Mexican Revolution.

Mexican Revolution

Our study of the Mexican Revolution will start with a general overview of the characters and ideologies represented. Students will read a survey of the period from 1910-1940 to introduce them to what is almost without exception a completely foreign topic. I have found that prior knowledge, even amongst the highest fliers in class; of the Mexican Revolution is limited to the name “Pancho Villa” and occasionally “Zapata” (thanks to a local Mexican restaurant). After reading a chapter from Jurgen Buchenau’s Mexican Mosaic students will probably be quite overwhelmed by the vastness and complexity of the topic. I will spend approximately five 90-minute blocks working through the Mexican Revolution one leader at a time. When students read Buchenau’s chapter they will create their own timeline and character chart. We will refer to this throughout the remainder of the unit for clarification.

Nationalism will come into our study of the Mexican Revolution after students have a general understanding of the characters, chronology, and ideologies at play in the conflict. The meta-narrative of any nation (the popularly understood chronology including “winners” and “losers”, key players, and significant issues) is consciously chosen and promoted. Generally the government plays the largest role in choosing and publishing this narrative through the events they acknowledge and either celebrate or condemn. The wider population has a sizeable hand in driving this selection as the masses can either support or subvert the choices of the government.

With this understanding we will discuss as a class different ways the history of the revolution could have been written and try to understand why certain themes show up in the meta-narrative over other equally accurate themes. Our discussion of history’s role in creating national identity will focus on the role of education minister, Jose Vasconcelos. He was responsible for the designation of Spanish as the official language and for pushing for the expansion of state-run schools throughout Mexico, including the hinterlands. To begin our discussion of Vasconcelos and the creation of Mexican national identity, students will read a short article written by Vasconcelos that outlines his idea that a mixed race is the strongest race. In addition students will read an article that applies Benedict Anderson’s thesis of nationalism as an “imagined community” to three case studies in Latin America, including Mexico. This reading emphasizes the importance of public education and the imposition of ideology by the government. However, the article also recognizes the agency of the masses in refining this message.[i]

A class discussion of these articles will include discussion of ways nationalism was invented in the United States and ways in which Americans come to identify as American. The comparison between the United States and Mexico is useful, especially considering the conflicting understandings of race in each country. The discussion will allow students to work through this juxtaposition and hopefully gain a more thorough understanding of how Mexico transformed between 1910 and 1940 to create the Mexico that we know today.


Our study of Stalin will begin with an investigation into the Russian Revolution and the unique approach to national identity the rise of state-imposed communism presents. Students will identify ways in which propaganda was used to unite the population behind the “mother-land”, and the inconsistencies this approach caused when compared to Marx’s ideal.

Students will read from Sheila Fitzpatrick’s Everyday Stalinism to understand ways Stalin attempted to gain popular support through fear and manipulation. We will pay particular attention to the role of propaganda in industry through mechanisms such as Stakhanovites, methods of educating the masses without increasing literacy, denunciations, and the media. We will then inquire as to the success of Stalin’s efforts in creating a more unified “nation”. Student conclusions may vary, and that is okay considering this is an area of great debate amongst professional historians.

This study will take place largely through in-class notes and discussion based on scholarly readings. We will study various methods of state control and propaganda, including propaganda posters, national hymns, doctored photographs, and textbook excerpts. We will compare these to modern American media to find similarities and differences and to have a practical understanding of how the masses respond to a top-down approach to the creation of national identity.


The study of Stalin provides a useful foundation for our study of Hitler. Stalin and Hitler are interesting foils. Our study of Hitler will begin with an introductory reading in our textbook and will include in-class notes; however, students tend to have a stronger background in the circumstances of Hitler’s rise and rule, allowing us to delve deeper into his methods of control. A key text for understanding Hitler’s relationship with the German people is Robert Gellately’s Backing Hitler: Consent and Coercion in Nazi Germany.

Before we can begin our in depth study of Hitler, we will need to review definitions of fascism. We will do this as a class discussion and compare fascism to more common forms of nationalism. It might be helpful to spell out this comparison here. Otherwise, the teacher who’s trying to use the unit has figured it out for her/himself.

There exists a wealth of primary resources to contribute to our study of Hitler. The majority of this portion of the unit will be approached through primary sources. Students will be presented with a series of propaganda posters from Calvin College’s Nazi Posters website. These posters should be strategically chosen to show a range of ways Hitler and Goebbels managed to reach every sector of German society. Hitler’s propaganda was central to his creation of a National Socialist identity for the German people.


Our final exploration of nationalism through single-party state leaders will come through Mao Tse-tung. The study of Mao provides an interesting lens as he unabashedly shunned Chinese tradition to create a new China through the Cultural Revolution. The majority of our study will focus on the Cultural Revolution and the use of youth programs (the Red Guard) and state propaganda to earn the allegiance of the masses.

Students will participate in an inquiry project that requires them to use the document analysis skills taught throughout the year. In order to be successful in this pursuit, I will first introduce Mao’s rise to power and his chief policies (the Great Leap Forward and Cultural Revolution) through lecture and in-class notes. Following the introduction of new information students will be provided with a particular aspect of Mao’s regime to investigate using solely primary documents. This exercise is designed to serve as a culmination of both our study of nationalism and document analysis.

Classroom activities (three or more detailed examples of actual teaching methods or lesson plans

Mexican Revolution Campaign

Through this small group project, students will gain an understanding of the complexity of the ideas of individual leaders of the Mexican Revolution and how these ideas clashed with the ideas of other revolutionary leaders. This will contribute to the students’ understanding of nationalism in Mexico as students see themes carrying through each leader’s policy.

Students will be assigned one of the following Revolutionary leaders: Calles, Carranza, Cardenas, Villa, Obregon, Zapata, Madero, or Vasconcelos. Students will be provided time in class to research their figure. Before embarking on research, in class we will review how to judge the reliability of a web site and discuss the values and limitations of several scholarly sources (journal articles and monographs in addition to textbooks and reference books).

Students will be required to write a two-minute campaign “stump speech” which highlights their figure’s policies and achievements, create a campaign poster with a rendering of their figure, make a 30 second attack ad focused on at least one of their opponents (this should be posted to, and make a fact sheet of one page, typed, that highlights both the good and bad of their figure. Students will be given time in class over the course of the unit to work with their groups but this assignment will also require outside meetings and work. Students will have two weeks (with two weekends) to complete this assignment.

The intention of this assignment is to help students make meaningful connections between their figure and his allies as well as understand the transformation of at least one key player at a deeper level. Once students have a thorough understanding of their figure they will have a reference point to make meaning of the other characters in the revolution. They also get a sense of the meta-narrative present in historical sources and can begin to understand why this narrative predominates.

Hitler v. Stalin

This assignment brings together our studies of Hitler and Stalin. Ideologically they could not be farther apart. In practice, though, they used similar methods to gain control over their populations, although they modified their practices to fit the demographics of their societies (more successfully at some times than others). This assignment starts out with a basic T-chart comparison that students must research to complete:

  Hitler Stalin
1. Approximate population of country.    
2. Approximate land area of country.    
3. Ideological affiliation    
4. Dates in power    
5. Under what circumstances did he gain power?    
6. Military Organization(s)    
7. Secret Police Organization(s)    
8. Youth groups(Include brief description of ages addressed and activities undertaken)    
9. Use of print media (provide an example)    
10. Use of radio    
11. Use of cinema    
12. Social programs implemented    
13. Outcome of above    
14. Economic programs implemented    
15. Outcome of above    
16. Response to religions    
17. Resistance groups    
18. Response to above    

After completing the chart we will have a class discussion about the differences and similarities between the two leaders. Each student will be assigned to either Hitler’s team or Stalin’s team. Students will have one evening to do further research in preparation for a debate between the two sides, the object of which is to prove that your assigned leader more effectively consolidated power and maintained popular support. This topic requires both sides to have an intimate understanding of both leaders, as they must provide outside references to support their contentions.

Mao Inquiry Project

In this assignment, students will be given a particular aspect of either the Great Leap Forward or the Cultural Revolution to research. They should understand Mao’s final intentions and the methods he uses to achieve his goals. In order to do this, students will have to rely largely on web-based sources (see below) and their skills in source analysis developed over the course of the year. Students also need to convey their conclusions through a presentation that chooses a few exemplary documents to demonstrate their conclusions to their classmates. The method students’ use for this presentation is open-ended. They could choose something as simple as a PowerPoint, but their presentation must include visuals of original documents (this can include photographs and film).

In addition to the visual presentation, students must turn in a written evaluation of all sources used in their final product. The written evaluation must assess the values and limitations of sources, based on their origins and purposes. The chart below is a useful tool to help students visualize this approach. In the Value and Limitations columns to the right of Origins, students include the ways the origins of each source (who created it, when, where, and how) inform the way a historian can use this source. Values are ways this source is useful, not based on the information included but based on who produced this source and where it was produced. Limitations are not problems with information, but aspects about the origins of the source that historians must be aware of before blindly trusting the source at face value.

Source #1: Origins: Value: Limitations:
Purpose: Value: Limitations:
Source #2: Origins: Value: Limitations:
Purpose: Value: Limitations:
Source #3: Origins: Value: Limitations:
Purpose: Value: Limitations:
Source #4: Origins: Value: Limitations:
Purpose: Value: Limitations:
Source #5: Origins: Value: Limitations:
Purpose: Value: Limitations:

The topics students can choose from include:

  • The Four Olds Campaign
  • The One Hundred Flowers Campaign
  • Mao’s “Little Red Book”
  • Great Leap Forward
  • Lin Biao
  • Red Guard
  • Black-listing and return of Deng Xiaoping
  • Other topics are acceptable based on teacher approval


A Bibliography for Teachers

Anderson, Benedict. Imagined Communities: Reflections on the Origin and Spread of Nationalism. New York: Verso, 2006.

This monograph is the classic modern analysis of the genesis of Nationalism. This unit is based on Anderson’s argument that national identity is a construct, it is not primordial, and it is fluid. This argument runs counter to most high school seniors’ assumptions about nationalism and national identity. Questioning these assumptions using Anderson’s evidence and analysis lays the foundation for this unit. However, if any student can successfully challenge Anderson’s thesis with their own cogent argument supported by significant evidence, I am happy to throw Anderson out the window and rewrite the unit then promptly promote said student to an endowed chair at a respectable university.

Bridgham, Philip. “Mao’s Cultural Revolution: The Struggle to Consolidate Power.” China Quarterly. (1971) 41, pp. 1-25.

This journal article provides an analysis of Mao’s actions published by a Western scholar during the Cultural Revolution. It analyzes Mao’s attempts to construct a new China based on bourgeois identity as dictated from above. This serves to show how identity can be enforced from above and the challenges faced by a powerful individual figure who aims to wrangle an entity larger than himself (the Chinese Communist Party).

Fetzer, James. “Mao Zedong: A Justification of Authoritarian Practice.” The High School Journal. (1985) 68,4, pp. 296-300.

This journal article attempts to explain Mao’s approach to consolidation of power and the creation of an authoritarian state. It touches on the methods used by Mao to coerce the masses. This article serves to show how the masses are not always easily coerced so state level actors must put into place complex systems to garner “support”.

A reading list for students

Audoin-Rouzeau, Stephane and Annette Becker. 14-18: Understanding the Great War. New York: Farrar, Strauss, and Giroux, 2002.

I excerpt the first chapter for the book for the students to read; however there are several other chapters that could be used to similar effect. This book is a challenging read for the students as it approaches the first world war from the new cultural perspective, looking at the experience of the body in war. This book is a valuable addition to the unit because it shows on a more personal level the extreme responses individuals have to nationalism. It also addresses different national responses to the first world war, adding to the running discussion of meta-narratives as part of national identity.

Buchenau, Jurgen. Mexican Mosaic: A brief history of Mexico. New York: Harlan Davidson, 2008.

This is a brief survey of Mexican history from colonization to present day. This provides the most accessible overview of Mexican history I have found. Students are given the chapter on the Mexican Revolution as an introduction to the topic. Students will need to be provided with background on La Porfiriato (the regime of Porfirio Diaz) as well as the Mexican class system as these are referenced in this chapter without further explanation.

Chang, Jung and Jon Halliday. Mao: The Unknown Story. New York: Knopf, 2005.

Excerpts from this monograph will be used to show the long-term effects of forced compliance with a national ideal. As Chang is a child of the Cultural Revolution, this text will be used in conjunction with propaganda from the era including Mao’s Little Red Book to show the propaganda used against children like Chang, then to show the impact of involvement in the enforcement of an authoritarian regime through Chang’s account of Mao. The text is massive; only one chapter from the Cultural Revolution account will be used as student reading.

Fitzpatrick, Sheila. Everyday Stalinism: Ordinary Life in Extraordinary Times. New York: Oxford University Press, 1999.

Excerpts from this monograph will be used to show the degree to which Stalin succeeded in co-opting the day-to-day actions of ordinary Russians. This text, when read with guiding questions, is accessible by IB Seniors. From this text they will see the difficulty any individual has in gaining true support from the population when the general population has been given no reason to trust the state. This will likely lead the students to conclude that individual identity can be stronger than national identity, particularly when a iron fist imposes that identity.

Gellately, Robert. Backing Hitler: Consent and Coercion in Nazi Germany. New York: Oxford University Press, 2002.

Excerpts from this monograph will be used to show the practices used by Hitler’s regime to gain popular consent for Hitler’s policies. Gellately shows how Hitler’s regime finds its way into everyday life. He convincingly shows that the regime won popular support from the majority of the population through legitimate means then used coercion to gain the “support” of the rest. Much of Hitler’s popular capital relied on

Miller, Nicola. “The Absolution of History: Uses of the Past in Castro’s Cuba.” Journal of Contemporary History. (2003) 30, 1, pp. 147-162.

This journal article is a stretch for students, though relatively accessible for IB Seniors with guiding questions. This article speaks to the significance of needing to root a nation and government in history to gain legitimacy. This article also allows students to put to practice their identification of different historiographical schools. They should be able to identify this article as a new cultural history. This article also presents a relatively accessible narration of events that will serve as background reading on Castro’s rise to, and consolidation of, power.

Vasconcelos, Jose. “Why I became a magazine editor”. Books Abroad. Vol. 6.1, 1932.

This is a short article that describes Vasconcelos’ approach to race succinctly and accessibly. English language sources about the Mexican Revolution are difficult to find and this is one of the few English language primary sources available. There are very few translations of Mexican sources, as well.

A list of materials for classroom use:

Landsberger, Stefan. Chinese Posters: Propaganda, Politics, History, and Art. (accessed November 19, 2011).

This website is a valuable resource for inquiry learning as it provides graphics and translations of a vast collection of Maoist propaganda posters along with historical commentary. Students can navigate and evaluate the posters with little guidance, making this a practical source for their Cultural Revolution inquiry project.

“Nazi Posters: 1933-1945.” Calvin College – Minds In The Making. (accessed September 25, 2011).

This website is a valuable resource for inquiry learning as it provides graphics and translations of a vast collection of Nazi propaganda posters. Students can search by year which will allow them to track change over time of the Nazi message. There is significant reference to German identity and nationalism in many of the posters, exhibiting several of the ways the Nazis used German identity to their favor.

“Quotations from Mao Tse-Tung”

Mao’s “Little Red Book” digitized and available online. Good for use in analyzing propaganda and understanding the role of education in the creation of national identity.

Asia for Educators. “Mao’s Most Widely Read Speeches”. (accessed November 19, 2011).

This website is a database of Mao’s most influential speeches translated into English. It includes speeches from before Mao’s rise of power, allowing for insight into how Mao gained support through the Chinese Civil War and early in the reign of the Chinese Communist Party.

“Morning Sun: a film and website about Cultural Revolution”. (accessed November 19, 2011).

This rich resource provides a plethora of multimedia propaganda, including films and music. This site is easily navigable and includes historical commentary, making it useable by students.

Riefenstahl, Leni. Triumph of the Will

Nazi propaganda film. Useful for analyzing propaganda and source analysis. Acts as a supplement to the Gellately reading. This is particularly rich for source analysis as students can research Riefenstahl and debate her relationship with the Nazi regime; this leads to real examples of questions of support, consent, or coercion.


International Baccalaureate Standards:

(The course I teach does not use North Carolina Standards but rather the International Baccalaureate Standards)

IB History of the Americas

* Twentieth Century Topics:

Rise and Rule of Single Party States

– Consolidation of power

– Use of mass movements and power apparati

Causes, Practices and Effects of War

– Justification for war

[i] Jose Vasconcelos, “Why I became a magazine editor”, Books Abroad, (6-1, 1932).

=Mso?GEoe????j?>[4] Smith, Anthony D., Nationalism, Polity Press, Cambridge 2010, p. 20

[5] Smith, p. 23

[6] Smith, p. 100

[7] Smith, p. 104

[8] Smith, p. 104

[9] Smith, p. 106

[10] Smith, p. 119

[11] Dietler, Michael, “Our Ancestors the Gauls”: Archaeology, Ethnic Nationalism, and the Manipulation of Celtic Identity in Modern Europe, American Anthropologist 96(3) p. 584

[12] Dietler, p. 584

[13] Dietler, p. 587

[14] Cohen, Yehuda: The French: Myths of Revolution, Sussex Academic Press, Portland, 2011, p. 21

[15] Hobsbawm, Eric

[16] Anderson, Benedict, Imagined Communities, Verso, New York 2006, p. 40

[17] Anderson, p. 40

[18] Anderson, p. 42

[19] Anderson, p. 44

[20] Auerbach, Erich, cited in Anderson, p. 68

[21] Anderson, p. 70

[22] Anderson, 71

[23] Robb, Graham, The Discovery of France, Norton & Company, New York, 2007

[24] Weber, Eugene, cited by Boswell, Laird, Rethinking the Nation at the Periphery, French Politics, Culture & Society, Vol. 27, No. 2, Summer 2009

[25] Safran, William, State, Nation, National Identity, and Citizenship: France as a Test Case, International Political Science Review, Vol. 12, No. 3, p. 220

[26] Dumont in Safran, William, p. 221

[27] Safran, p. 221

[28] Cohen, p. 119

[29] Cohen, p. 128

[30] Cohen, p. 34

[31] Cohen, p. 33

[32] Cohen, p. 7

[33] Cohen, p. 27

[34] Cohen, p. 37

[35] Cohen, p. 64

[36] Cohen, p. 80

[37] Cohen, p. 80

[38] Cohen p. 111

[39] Cohen, p. 110

[40] Cohen, p. 87