Teaching Comparative Government and Politics

Saturday, March 14, 2015

Crash Course: Iran's Revolutions

Ken Halla posted a link to John Green's version of recent Iranian history and politics. It's good, but in 13 minutes of illustrated lecture, you can't do everything. I wish the narrative was more integrated (it jumps from history to politics to history and back to politics in the middle section). Some things are, to me, over simplified and under explained. Maybe they won't be for your students.

One of the earliest comments on YouTube was "Great video, however, how did you fail to mention:

"-The Iran-Iraq war
"-Khomeini Mass executions and the sick nature of the Islamic regime
"-The immensely corrupt nature of the Islamic regime
"-The wider scope of the Shah's contributions
"-The further details of the Anglo-Russian invasion? "

I'd recommend Green's lecture as a follow-up to studying government and politics in Iran, and ask students to critique it. If I were using it, I'd divide it into 3 or 4 segments for discussion. And I'd ask students to pay special attention to the final segment which addresses comparative government directly.

Thanks again, Ken.

Iran's Revolutions: Crash Course World History 226
John Green teaches you about Iran's Revolutions. Yes, revolutions plural. What was the 1979 Iranian Revolution about? It turns out, Iran has a pretty long history of unrest in order to put power in the hands of the people, and the most recent revolution in 1979 was, at least at first, not necessarily about creating an Islamic state. It certainly turned out to be about that, but it was initially just about people who wanted to get rid of an oppressive regime. Listen up as John teaches you about Iran's long history of revolution

And the citations, in case you don't see them at the bottom of the YouTube annotation:
Citation 1: Caryl, Christian. Strange Rebels: 1979 and the Birth of the 21st Century. New York, Basic Books. 2014, p. 11
Citation 2: Axworthy, Michael, Revolutionary Iran: A History of the Islamic Republic. Oxford U. Press. 2014, p. 62
Citation 3: Quoted in Axworthy, p. 81
Citation 4: Axworthy, p. 114
Citation 5: Axworthy, p. 163

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