Russian school children to be taught modern history in the Filippov version


A panel of the Ministry of Education and Science has approved a federal list of textbooks for 2008-2009.  One of these is based on Alexander Filippov’s book for teachers already reported here. It covers the period from 1945 to 2007 with the last chapters being dedicated to the period under Vladimir Putin.

Apparently the section “Arguments about the role of Stalin in history” with its description of the tyrant as “one of the most successful leaders of the USSR”, has been shelved. However the authors still attack oligarchs and Georgia, praise Putin’s abolition of elections for the post of governors of the regions (they are now chosen by the Kremlin – translator) and the arrest of Mikhail Khodorkovsky.

The General Director of the educational publishing company told Echo Moskvy that a small print run of the new textbook had already been sent for testing to a selected number of Russian schools, after which it will be published en masse.  He explained that they had chosen rural and urban areas as well as Yakutia and Tatarstan in order to see the response to the textbook in different conditions and environments within the Russian Federation. 

The author of another history textbook Igor Dalutsky believes that this type of textbook is “needed by a society which doesn’t want to think and wants to be told what is right”.

The Director of the Russian State Archives Sergei Mironenko says that it’s already good that they have excluded the chapter on the supposedly positive role Stalin played in history. “There needs to be some kind of period of time before society can provide any more or less objective assessment of the activities of any given historical figures, and it is inappropriate to assess a process which has not ended”.

Based on information from

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