What is a Revolution Not?

The aim of today’s lesson is to come up with answers to the following questions:

  • What is a revolution?
  • Why do revolutions happen?
  • What are the characteristics of a revolution?
  • What is a revolution not?

Here are the tasks you need to complete:

1. Look at and discuss the Wordles you made yesterday. Looking at them, what are the most important words when talking about revolutions? How does this help you understanding of what a revolution is?

2. In pairs, take a copy of each of the three readings that have been prepared – Morcombe/Fielding, Halliday & Adcock. Decide between the two of you how you will go about reading the bulk of each text – which sections will you read? How will you summarise them for your partner?

3. Start working on the class wiki which can be found at http://revolutionshistory.wikispaces.com (yes you do need to become a member of it). Based on the introduction by Michael Adcock, start organising the wiki into sections (as in add pages) with headings that you think are going to be relevant over the course of the semester. This wiki will become a revision notes site and if we build it as we go, then that will take the pain out of creating long notes at the end. Also, the front page of the wiki is going to be used for all of you to write the story of the French Revolution. One of you in the class needs to write an introduction paragraph or two outlining what a revolution is. Be creative though, we don’t want this ‘wiki story’ to read like a good old history book!

You all need to contribute to this wiki. If someone has created a page and you think the title of the page should be changed, then go ahead and change it – be nice about it though, and maybe discuss it with the person who created it in the first place. The idea of wikis is that it is a collaborative space that no one person owns and that several people use together to build a resource.

4. Create a Comic Life entitled ‘A Revolution Is Not…’ and make sure it finishes the following sentences:

  • A revolution is…
  • Revolutions happen because…
  • A revolution is not…
  • If I started a revolution…

You could present it as a conversation between two people – one of which is asking about what history is or what your subject is about. You could make a propaganda poster recruiting people to join you in your revolution.

This is due at the start of our next lesson.

A handy little site that you might like to read is: How To Start A Revolution

Photo is Ollie LOL cat’ by mlcastle