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Countries… PowerPoint Presentation
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Countries…

Countries…

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Countries…

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  1. Countries… • Armenia • Azerbaijan • Georgia • Kazakhstan • Kyrgyzstan • Russia • Tajikistan • Turkmenistan • Ukraine • Uzbekistan • stan – means “place” or “land” in Turkish

  2. Geography… • Russia stretches 6,000 miles from east to west • Largest country • Eurasia – name given to Europe and Asia when they are considered one landmass or continent • Many of these countries are landlocked

  3. Plains… • Northern European Plain • ¾ of the people live there • Rich topsoil called chernozem (Russia for “black earth”) is good for farming • 3 large cities • Moscow, St. Petersburg, Kiev • West Siberian Plain • Most of the land consists of swamps, marshes and frozen land unsuitable for farming • Thinly populated • Central Asian (Turan) Plains • Most is desert or dune covered • Deserts • Kara-Kum – black sand desert • Kyzyl-kum – red sand desert

  4. Mountains… • Urals • Divide the regions of Europe & Russia • Carpathian • Caucasus • Highest point – Mt. Elbrus (18,510 ft) • Tian Shan • Altay Shan • Shan – means mountain in Chinese

  5. Seas & Lakes… • Sea of Okhotsk • Bering Sea • Black Sea • Caspian Sea • World’s largest lake • Aral Sea • Has shrunk 60% since 1960 • Soviets wanted to prosper from cotton industry • Built network of irrigation canals & have overused water supply • Lake Baikal • Deepest lake in the world • Holds 1/5 of earth’s total freshwater supply • Lake Balkhash

  6. Rivers… • Rivers that flow across the plains of Central Asia: • Volga • Major river used for trade • Don • Dnieper • Major Siberian rivers that are frozen most of the year & flow northward into Arctic Ocean: • Lena • Ob • Yenisey

  7. Natural Resources… • Rich in natural resources • Energy sources: • Oil, natural gas, coal • Minerals: • Gold, lead, manganese, iron, copper, zinc

  8. Ethnic Diversity • Many different ethnic groups – group of people who share a common ancestry, language, customs, or religion • Boundaries were based on nationalities – large, distinct ethnic groups within a country • When the Soviet Union broke apart, independent countries were formed

  9. Population Distribution • 276 million people in this region • Russia is the 9th most populated country in the world • Distribution • Only 25% of Russia lies in Europe but 80% of people live in this region • Environment determines where people live • East of Ural Mountains • Low population density • Climate is harsh and mountainous • West of Ural Mountains • Dense population • Large cities • Rich, fertile farmland • More than 2/3 of the population lives in urban areas • Decreasing population • Many of these countries are losing population • Death rate > birth rate • Poor health habits (smoking, alcohol abuse) • Collapse of Soviet Union plunged many into poverty

  10. History… • Slavs • Main group to settle what is now Russia & Ukraine • A.D. 800 – city of Kiev became center of trade between Mediterranean & Baltic Seas • 1240 – Mongol invaders from Central Asia destroyed Kiev

  11. Mongols… • In the 1200s, the Mongol warriors invaded Central Asia • Led by Genghis Khan • Conquered a huge area & destroyed Kiev • Began 200 year rule of Central Asia

  12. Czars… • Czar – Title of Russian emperor • 1547 – Ivan crowned himself the 1st czar • Made Moscow the religious and political center of Russia • Russia was far behind Europe in achievements and modernization • 1682 – 1725 – Czar Peter the Great ruled • Peter attempted to modernize Russia by modeling the rest of Europe • Dressed like a European • Gained territory • Increased trade • Made a new capital city called St. Petersburg • Catherine the Great • Expanded Russian territory even further north

  13. Discontent… • By the late 1800s Russia began to industrialize • Russia’s people were tired of the rule of the Czars • Largely a country of poor peasant farmers called serfs • Serf – laborers owned by lords and bound to the land • Lords controlled the land and the wealth • 1860s – serfs were freed from the land but poverty did not end • By 1917 – poor harvests, economic depression, & losses during WWI forced the end of czars • Czar Nicholas II was forced to abdicate, or resign

  14. Russian Revolution… • 1917 – small group called the Bolsheviks overthrew the government in event known as Russian Revolution • People began to favor socialism – philosophy that called for ownership of all land and factories by peasants and workers • The Bolsheviks were led by Vladimir Lenin • Lenin wanted to remake Russia using the ideas of Karl Marx

  15. Karl Marx… Hammer & sickle of the communist party • German philosopher • Believed that the working class were the victims of capitalism • Lenin thought the solution was communism • Felt a classless society would emerge

  16. Russian Revolution… • Bolsheviks – also called “Reds” favored communism • Communism – social and political movement developed by Karl Marx and Lenin that favored revolution to establish a classless society in which workers would control industrial production • Anti-Bolsheviks – also called “Whites” • Civil War broke out between the two groups • The Reds won the war • Russian Empire was renamed Union of Soviet Socialist Republics (USSR)

  17. Soviet Era… • Soviet Union became totalitarian state • Lenin’s Government: • Used “Peace, Land, and Bread” as his slogan • Withdrew Russia from WWI • Moved the capital back to Moscow • Took control of industry • Promised workers an 8 hour workday

  18. Soviet Era… • Following Lenin’s death, Joseph Stalin took power • Stalin’s brutal regime lasted until 1953 • Adopted policy of autarky – system in which a country tries to produce all the goods that it needs • Trade with capitalist countries was limited • Without competition, efficiency dropped off • Government took control of industries and farm production • Personal freedoms were limited • Millions were sent to labor camps called gulags • Churches were closed or destroyed • The Soviet Union became involved in WWII • Expanded their territory to Eastern Europe and spread communism

  19. Cold War… • Soviet Union vs. Non-Communist countries • Constant competition with the U.S. • There was always the threat of war and using nuclear weapons until the late 1980s • Mikhail Gorbachev tried to reform the Soviet Union through his concepts of: • Perestroika – restructuring the Soviet government and economy • Glasnost – policy of openness • But these reforms proved not to be enough

  20. New Republics… • 1990 – Soviet Union began to fall apart and collapsed in 1991 • Each of the former 15 republics became independent • In 1991, Soviet Republics held its 1st democratic election for President • Boris Yeltsin became president • Many of the republics declared independence • No longer known as the Soviet Republic • The republics became independent countries

  21. Culture… • For over 70 years, the Soviets were in power • The Soviets: • Forced people to give up religion • Made Russian the official language • Communism limited personal freedoms • Now everything is different: • Language • 85% of Russians are Slavs and speak Slavic languages • Russian is the most commonly spoken language • During Soviet rule, Russian was the official language • Russian is still spoken and read in most of the Republics but each Republic has its own official language • Almost 2/3 of Central Asians speak a language of the Turkic language family • Education • High literacy rate • Soviet system limited personal freedoms but stressed education

  22. Culture • Closed down or destroyed churches • Since the 1990s more religious freedom was allowed • Christianity • Eastern Orthodox Christianity • Most commonly practiced religion • split from Catholic Church in 1054 • Islam • 2nd most practiced religion in the region • Traders and conquerors brought Islam to Central Asia • Judaism • Often suffered prejudice and discrimination

  23. Economy under Soviet Rule… • For many years, Russia and the Eurasian Republics were under the control of the Soviets • Had a command economy – an economy in which the central authority makes economic decisions • The Soviet government controlled the distribution of goods and price of goods • Focused on heavy industry – manufacturing based on metals • Not focused on light industry – consumer goods • Used the black market – illegal market where goods were sold at a much higher price than those set by the government • Gorbechev wanted to move the government towards a free market economy Heavy Industry vs. Light Industry

  24. Challenges with New Economies… • When Russia and the Republics became independent, they faced challenges: • Unemployment & crime increased • Gap between rich and poor is growing • Safety net old Soviet government provided was gone • Public healthcare declined • Factories & transportation needed to be modernized Immigrants From the Former Soviet Republics

  25. Agriculture & Industry under Soviet Rule… • The government controlled all industry & agriculture • People worked where the government told them • Accepted wages the government was willing to pay • Paid by the piece, not hours worked • Agriculture and industry were not efficient • Workers were not motivated and had no incentive to work hard • Under Perestroika, efforts were made to change this by: • Letting factory managers make some decisions • Start their own farms

  26. Agriculture & Industry after Soviet Rule… • After independence, the Republics tried to reform their economies • Agriculture & herding remain important • Mining & industry offers future wealth for region • However, many skilled Russian workers are leaving the region • Corruption, poor transportation, and lack of investment hurts development • Countries are landlocked and trade routes are not easily accessible

  27. Environment… • The Soviets pushed to industrialize their country & become an economic power • Soviet government paid little attention to environmental issues • Huge areas are ruined by pollution • Today the government has little money to repair damage • Worst disaster occurred at Chernobyl • Nuclear Energy • Soviets wanted to use nuclear energy as a fuel source • Built nuclear power stations • Soviets didn’t tell citizens they were testing nuclear bombs • 1.5 million people were exposed to radiation

  28. Chernobyl… • Chernobyl – small town in Northern Ukraine • In 1986, there was an explosion at the nuclear power station • Released deadly radiation into the atmosphere • Soviets tried to cover up the story • 2 days later, Swedish scientists noticed the increase in radiation in their air • Aftermath: • Radiation from explosions contaminated millions of acres of forests & farmland • Thousands suffered from cancer and blood disease due to radiation • Chernobyl was abandoned and destroyed

  29. Water Problems… • The Soviets emphasized heavy industry and farming so much that they often shrank or polluted water supplies • Testing of biological weapons contaminated the Aral Sea • Shrinking of Caspian Sea and Aral Sea • Soviets demanded high quotas on agriculture • Farmers forced to use the Caspian & Aral Seas for irrigation • In 15 years, the Caspian Sea dropped 8 feet • Pollution of Lake Baikal • Polluted due to a paper and pulp mill • Rivers with fertilizers and chemicals flow into the lake

  30. Pollution… • The Soviets gave little thought to the environment • Dumped toxic wastes into rivers • Factories burned coal that polluted the air