Works Cited

Posted in Works Cited on March 31, 2010 by rogerdealwis
 Note:  The websites are suppose to be within these < >. WordPress won’t allow me to keep it that way, sorry!
“Capitalism -.” Wikipedia, the Free Encyclopedia. Web. 31 Mar. 2010.
“Castro Speech Database – LANIC.” Latin American Network Information Center – LANIC. Web. 31 Mar. 2010.
“Che Guevara -.” Wikipedia, the Free Encyclopedia. Web. 31 Mar. 2010.
“Che Guevara Bio – History of Cuba.” Cuban History Begins Here. Web. 31 Mar. 2010.
Che Guevara. Web. 31 Mar. 2010.
“Communism -.” Wikipedia, the Free Encyclopedia. Web. 31 Mar. 2010.
“Communism 20 Years On.” Behind The News. Web. 31 Mar. 2010.
“Fidel Castro -.” Wikipedia, the Free Encyclopedia. Web. 31 Mar. 2010.
“Fidel Castro History Archive.” Marxists Internet Archive. Web. 31 Mar. 2010.
“Fidel Castro.” Oracle ThinkQuest Library. Web. 31 Mar. 2010.
Grant, Neil. Oxford Children’s History of the World. Oxford: Oxford UP, 2000. Print.
“HRW WORLD ATLAS – Cuba.” Web. 31 Mar. 2010.
The International Baccalaureate Offers High Quality Programmes of International Education to a Worldwide Community of Schools. Web. 31 Mar. 2010. <;.
“An Invitation to Democrats in Exile.” The Confluence. Web. 31 Mar. 2010.
“Jacobin (politics) -.” Wikipedia, the Free Encyclopedia. Web. 31 Mar. 2010.
“John Locke.” Home Page for Oregon State University. Web. 31 Mar. 2010.
Leonard, Thomas M. Castro and the Cuban Revolution. Westport, Conn.: Greenwood, 1999. Print.
“Maximilien Robespierre -.” Wikipedia, the Free Encyclopedia. Web. 31 Mar. 2010.
“Radio Rebelde from the Cuban Revolution at Freedom Archives.” Freedom Archives Home. Web. 31 Mar. 2010.
“Raúl Castro -.” Wikipedia, the Free Encyclopedia. Web. 31 Mar. 2010.
“Teaching English in Latin America.” Portal for Work Abroad, Study Abroad, Cultural Travel and Living Overseas. Web. 31 Mar. 2010.
“Teaching English in Latin America.” Portal for Work Abroad, Study Abroad, Cultural Travel and Living Overseas. Web. 31 Mar. 2010.
“Text.” University of Michigan. Web. 31 Mar. 2010.
“University of Havana -.” Wikipedia, the Free Encyclopedia. Web. 31 Mar. 2010.
Weblo Virtual Domains, Property, Celebrity and Auction. Web. 31 Mar. 2010.
“WELCOME -MY INDIE PAGE.” FawnDoo’s Website of Whimsy – Welcome to My (online) World. Web. 31 Mar. 2010.

French Revolution: Introduction

Posted in French Revolution on March 31, 2010 by rogerdealwis


For this part of the blog I will be discussing the ideologies behind the French Revolution in brief and simultaneously be comparing and contrasting the ideologies of the French Revolution to the Cuban Revolution. There will be no links to AOI or Criteria B concepts separately as this will be replaced by the comparing and contrasting. However there will be concepts and AOI’s embedded in the main posts.


What Ideological Influences Were The Robespierre Exposed To?

Posted in French Revolution on March 31, 2010 by rogerdealwis
Since there were many leader behind the French Revolution I will be only focusing on one of them and his influences from ideologies.               


 Maximillien Robespierre’s Exposure To Ideologies            

Robespierre was the extremist in the French Revolution and thus the most influential person in leading it. He was a left wing political leader longing for or rather fighting for a change in King Louis XVI’s regime. . He got a scholar to Lycee-Louis les Grande in his early education and he was highly interested/exposed to the ideologies of the Roman Republic, an empire that followed Democracy.His most exposure of ideologies was throughout his education. He also became interested in Jean-Jacques Rousseau’s and Montesquieu’s ideologies on which he based most of his actions in French Revolution. Since Jean-Jacques was influenced by Johne Locke meaning that most of Jean-Jacques’ ideas will be the same I will only be discussing about John Locke’s ideologies later on. After graduating he became a lawyer and was mainly known for defending the poor by bringing up ideas from the Enlightenmen such as equality and human rights. Above all there was on outstanding event that took place in his life that made him want to change how France was ruled. This reason was not for the better of people nor for recognition. It was for revenge. When he was 17 he was chosen out of 500 students to deliver a speech to Louis XVI. However the King was late for the occasion, leaving robespierre and the crowd waiting in the rain. Then the royal couple left right after their arrival, this built hatred towards the King inside young Robespierre’s mind. Alth

Maximillien Robespierre


ough this sounds like a dramatic event, almost too perfect for it to have happened since Robespeirre was a brutal figure in the French Revolution it must be noted that this information may have been altered to give a more dramatic effect, such as the rain. However the event happened defintely, justified by many sources.

 Comparison to Castro [In terms of influences]              

  •  Both got their dose of influence through the education       
  • They had a different variety of exposures to ideologies.
  • Fidel had a perfectly molded ‘system’ to be placed, Communism.

 Differences :    

  • Both had personal ‘grudges’ against the dictator in place. [Fidel had his when Batista held a coup and destroyed all chances for him running for an important position]
  •  Robespierre was just using individual ideologies and embeding it into a constitutional Monarchy.

John Locke: Ideologies

Posted in French Revolution on March 31, 2010 by rogerdealwis

These were the main ideas that John Locke believed in. These ideas influenced Rousseau and Rousseau influenced Robespierre.

Social Contract

This is the agreement between the government and the people. The people give the right to a body of people to be the sovereigns or leders that have the authority to conduct and create laws. In return the people should get public order and proper governing.


John Locke belived that all decisions and actions should be based on reason. Conventional practices should be questioed as to why they are done? Seeking for reasons brought about the French Revolution. People started asking why does the third estate get taxed more? Why is the king king if he is unfit for the throne and etc. This caused commotion and added to the natural distaste towards the Monarchy.

Separation Of Powers

John Locke believed that if society was divied up into three compartments with their own responsibilities and their own amount of power that society will function better. This is where the three estates of the French pre-revolution hierarchy come from. However this is a twisted misused version of the sepration powers, making the third estate ‘crippled’ in terms of power and political significance. The Frnech ancien regime was divided like this, the Monarchy, Aristocracy and the Commons. The commons were the third estate, poorly treated and all the power drained from them by the 1st and 2nd estate’s.

Equality: Life, Health, Liberty and The Pursuit to Happiness.

This was also one of Lockes political theories. Every man should have the right to protection, healthcare, freedom and to become whatever they wanted regardless of their social status.

How Does This Link To Robespierre And His Actions?

This was the whole point of the French Revolution. On these foundations did people revolt, fighting, hopefully for a better way of life. Although Robespierre only played a crucial role in the revolution later on during the Reign of Terror. He advocated these ideas of Social Contract and reasoning. Since after the revolution, France was in turmoil with no distinct ‘sovereign”, many parties were created. However one party was created, the Commitee of Public Safety. Robespierre was the president of this party and he automatically had the power for most of the decisions, along with other minor parties. these were the ideologies Robespierre was fighting for even though it was with extremism. He conducted a Reighn of Terror where all anti-revolutionries were beheaded with the infamous guillotine. Every death sentence was justified by the ideologies in the sense that they said they were killing the aristocracy to ‘sustain’ these ideologies in the community. It eventually got so out of hand that even Robespierre himself was executed.

Compare & Contrast Between Marxism and Enlightenment Ideologies [Mainly of John Locke]


  • Communism is one system-advocating on how to rule a country economically, socially and politically. It’s organized, it’s got everything in order to rule a country. It’s the ‘one stop shop’. When you promise Communism to people or something similar you cant really twist it so much as to the way Robespierre did.
  • Whereas ideologies from the enlightenment were a bit wishy washy and had loopholes in order to be twisted so corrupt leaders can justify their injustifible actions. The ideologies were all over the place, one could take and mix and twist and do whatever pleased and still keeping the leaders ‘promise’ to the people.


  • Both ideologies were directed towards the working class. They were applicable only in political aspects, they lead to political revolutions.
  • The ideologies, if accepted by the majority and came into being gave tremendous power to the hands of a proletariat.

Why Did Robespierre Choose The Ideologies Of John Locke?

Posted in French Revolution on March 31, 2010 by rogerdealwis

Note: The ideas incorporated into the new French government are not solely from John Locke but the majority of the ideas are from him and so I will only be focusing on them.

Before the revolution, there was clearly a unfair distribution of wealth and unfair treatment of people. If you were in the 3rd estate you had to face the intensified harships of life. The working class was taxed for basically everything they did. They got taxed for using mills and bread and wine. The workers class was viewed as th ‘factory’ where everything got done. They were viewed as a comodity and they lacked the right to basic human rights. Bringing in these ideologies and putting them into action would solve all the problems faced by the working class. Social Contract would let both the governers and the citizens be in control thus agreement between the 2 parties. Equality will obviosly prevent mistreatment between higher and lower classes and this will keep the lower classes happy. Separation of power will help run the state more smoothly. Running different parts to contribute to one common goal. As they say ‘too many cooks spoil the soup’ and this separation powers is a wise idea. Reasoning was also a good way to approach situations. This would prevent and misuse of power by the higher class as they can’t say ‘We’re taxing you more becuase that’s how its been’.

Compare [Why Did Castro Choose Communism? Vs. Why Did Robespierre Choose Ideologies Of John Locke?]


  • They both saw these ideologies as the way to please the majority of the population.[Working Class]
  • Because they wanted to fix the ‘equality’ gap between the workers class and the aristocrats.
  • Brought everyone onto common ground.


What Does The Ideas Of The Enlightenment Mean For France In Social, Economic and Political Terms?

Posted in French Revolution on March 31, 2010 by rogerdealwis
Economic Aspect: Due to equality, everyone will be taxed the same. This will reduce the strain on a working class individuals GNP.
Political Aspects: The Social Contract and the separation of Power can be classified as a political change.

Political Aspect

The social contract will give the people sovereignty, which then they will pass on to [by voting] to the leader they want to be elected. This will greatly improve public distress as people can and will choose their own leaders. They will be happier because choosing they’re leader you want allows you to choose what laws you want to be governed by, then making the citizens the ultimate sovereign. The separation of power will also greatly improve public mood as each estate gets an area or rule which they are responsible for and they get a certain amount of power. This is also good way of ruling as having a lot of people involved in one thing could result horribly. “Too many cooks spoil the soup”. The use of Reasoning is also a clever idea that will sustain all the other ideas. This eliminates the possibility that the leader will do something selfish and say it is routine or a ritual.      

  • Both had effects on the working class
  • They both had effect on the system of ruling


  • The French Revolution was more of a mental relief. It was all about the people and their treatment. Whereas the Cuban Revolution was majorly based on economics and the Cuban Revolution relieved financial aspects.

Social Aspects

  Social Aspects:  The understanding and respecting of individuals as equal regardless of class effects the community as a whole. Eveyone being treated equally almost diminishes the set up of classes creating a closer bong among the people.        

Economic Aspects



Posted in Home on March 28, 2010 by rogerdealwis


Revolutions, Geared By Ideas



In this blog I will be focusing on the similarities and differences of the CUBAN and FRENCH revolution in terms of ideologies involved. All revolutions that have taken place have an ideology behind it, t  


hey have a type of change they want to make. Be it to overthrow a capitalist society and replace it with a communistic one or socialist one, they all have idea’s, an aim to be fulfilled so to speak.  

Some of the questions that will be answered as you go through this blog:  

-What influences were the leaders of the revolutions exposed to?  

Why did those leaders choose that certain ideology?  

-What does the ideology chosen by the leader mean for a country, in political and social terms?  

Every revolution was first a thought in one man’s mind
~Ralph Waldo Emerson

Cuba: What Political Influences Was Fidel Castro Exposed To?

Posted in Cuban Revolution on March 28, 2010 by rogerdealwis

Before I go into comparing and contrasting the ideas behind the two revolutions, I feel like it would help to give some background information about the ideas behind the two revolutions. After answering the questions for both of the revolutions I will be going into comparing and contrasting.

This post will be answering the first question: What ideologies were the leaders of each revolution exposed to?

To understand the ideas that Fidel Castro [the primary leader who led the revolution in Cuba] was exposed to it helps to know in what government system he was exposed to and what influences he had.


Sine 1930 it became clear that Cuba was slowly moving into a revolution. Rebellion of the working class was becoming common among society. There were many groups fighting for an honest government and fair treatment of all. Fidel grew up in such a country where many Communistic Parties were fighting for a just government and where they were ruthlessly countered and tortured by the capitalistic government.Throughout the working class, Fidel was known as the lawyer who fought for the oppressed and the mistreated. So it was only natural for Fidel to want to use his skills to promote and support the slowly surfacing revolution. Fidel joined the the 1952 elections through the Orthodox Part, a Communist party. However when General Batista staged a coup and declared himself as the provisional president, or president coming into rule temporarily without general consensus, all hope for a proletarian revolution diminished. Fidel saw the only way to bring justice was through violent means.

Batista’s Cuba

The Cause of Social Classes

Right before Fidel Castro led the revolution, Cuba was ruled by Batista. Batista came to power twice, once in 1940 and once again before Castro overthrew his regime. Batista was a capitalist himself and he ruled Cuba in a Capitalistic manner. The reason as to why he did this was because he wanted to ‘fit in’ with the elites of Cuba and he wanted increase his personal fortune, for obvious reasons. He didn’t seem to care about the working class and let the ones that can be succesful be succesful. This was unfair as this only allowed people born into the ‘good life’ reach success. Those born into poverty without education and opportunities were almost always stuck there. This created a massive gap between the classes, almost separating the country itself.

Influences At University


Fidel attended the University of Havana, a university that had many different political ideologies and political parties. What caught Castro’s attention was the Orthodox Party which had its believed in ‘economic independance, political liberty, social justice and an end to corruption.’-(Castro and the Cuban Revolution, page92)

Che’s Influence

Che's Twist To Communism

Che Guevara was born into a republican family, so as a young kid he was brought up with viewpoints of fairness and democracy. His parents’ house had 3000 something books and Karl Marx was the author among the many books he read at home, so definitely he was influenced by Communist ideas. Che was given a worthy education. In 1951 Che set out on a motorcycle journey and he was shocked by the extreme poverty that was present. He concluded that this poverty was the direct consequence of Capitalistic governments. He had formed a dream or rather a fight against such poverty and his idea of getting rid of poverty was to directly reform the system of governing from Capitalism to Communism, like he learned in books of Karl Marx. When Che and Fidel met in Mexico, Che had said that the cause Fidel was fighting for was the cause that he had been looking for. Che helped shape Fidels political beliefs. With the help of Che, Castro had a well molded view of Marxism that could fit into Cuban society. In summary Che further educated Castro on Marxism. Che also advocated Guerilla warfare, a tactic that helped troops fight a bigger and better equiped opposition. Che played a key role in training the 81 men in Mexico to fight with Guerilla tactics.

The exposure of Ideologies definitely influences the ideology that someone would want impose in a country. Fidel Castro was exposed to Capitalism through the leadership of presidents in Cuba, he was exposed to Communism from his University and Communism with the addition of Che’s ideas. What makes the difference is the ideology Fidel Castro wanted to impose on Cuba and why?

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Why Did Fidel Castro Choose Communism For Cuba?

Posted in Cuban Revolution on March 28, 2010 by rogerdealwis

To answer this question one must first understand the situation of Cuba thoroughly. I will give some brief bullet points:    

  • During Batista’s second coup he suspended the constitution, allowing him to do whatever he pleased.
  • Cuba was a Capitalist country and Batista further empowered the rich in order to ‘fit in’ among their social circles.
  • Batista let Americans sweep in and invest in the Cuban cash crops, in most cases allowing foreign powers (USA) to exploit the working class in order to gain the maximum of the countries resources.
  • Batista allowed the opening up of casino’s where the minority elite and rich American gamblers could come and have a good time.
  • Cuba Was Americas Casino

  • In conclusion, Batista was trying to jump ahead into a stage of tertiary services without trying to develop the country as a whole.
  • This caused major separation between social classes, the elite engaged in the highest level of tertiary work while the poor worked primary jobs in the harshest of conditions.
  • Cuba’s Capitalistic policies didn’t allow the poor and the less opportunistic to become succesful in life. Most people were born as a farmer and died as a farmer.
  • Batista’s twisted constitution allowed him to take action unfairly and as a result any government opposition was put down mercilessly.


Any Opposition Was Silenced Forever

This is where Fidel Castro comes in the fight for the people and ousts Batista from power, while that’s all great, the question remains why he did this, or more importantly why did he replace Capitalism with Communism? Although the answer may seem quite obvious, I will answer in great analysis.    

Why Take Capitalism Out?    

With the influence of Che, Fidel saw that Capitalism was the root cause of poverty in Cuba, in fact the whole of Latin America. Capitalism kept the riches with the rich, it prevented ‘fair’ distribution of wealth. The question of success was almost entirely dependant on the life you were born into. If you were born to rich parents, they would be able to provide you with a proper education and this means a wide array of opportunities and paths to take in life. Whereas if you were born into poor parents, it is highly unlikely that you would be provided with a decent education. The children born into a poor family will be more likely working on the family farm or selling the products of the family farm in the market. So when the poor were stepped on and kept away from education and opportunities, they remained poor. This streak of ‘being born a farmer and dying a farmer’ could go as long as Capitalism was in place. The rich however, would keep getting richer and richer. If you were one of the few born into the rich life, you would love Capitalism. Unfortunately, the majority of Cuba’s population was poor, and they were being negatively affected by the Capitalism put in place by Batista. The reason why Capitalism was replaced with Communism by Fidel was because Capitalism didn’t work for Cuba. Sure it would for the elite, but they were a minority. When ruling a country, a good leader would consider the needs of the majority of the population and virtually all the people of Cuba were poor. Putting in Capitalism was an insane way of ruling Cuba but sane way of gaining wealth and being popular among the elite. 

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Why Put In Communism? What Does It Mean Economically and Politically For Cuba?

Posted in Cuban Revolution on March 28, 2010 by rogerdealwis

 Through Fidel’s eyes, Communism was the best suited system of rule for Cuba. He had been interested in Communism long before he was in a situation where he had to decide how he was going to rule a country. Majority of Cuba’s population was the working class and so Communism fitted in perfectly into Cuban society. After Fidel defeated Batista’s army, Fidel came into power. All the Elite and the middle class society fled to America in fear of a Communistic approach by Fidel as this would lower their standards of life. Most of the elite and the middle class sector were supporters of Batista and so the ones left in Cuba were tried and executed when they were proven guilty. The first approach towards change by Revolutionary Government was the passing of an Agrarian Law where any ownership of Sugar plantations by foreigners were seized. The size of a farm a farmer could own was limited to limiting the size of farms to 3,333 acres and real estate to 1,000 acres. The rest of the land was distributed to landless peasants and families. This would help lift everyone or the majority of the people in country to a certain stage, everyone would be at the same ‘level’. Castro quickly abandoned hos promise of democracy and he consolidated his power. All other parties were disregarded and there was only the Communist Party Of Cuba in which Fidel was the First Secretary. Fidel Castro tried to put into place a ‘new Socialist man’ where everyone worked for the better of the community and not for one’s own benefit. Initially one of Che’s ideas, it didn’t quite work out. If this idea had worked, they were planning to eliminate money! The reason as to why I think this idea wouldn’t have worked is because now everyone was at the same level, everyone wanted the same thing; more money. There was no one in need of the basic necessities of life, everyone was striving for the next level of living. So nobody wanted to work and do better to other people, they wanted to work and do better for themselves. Another reason as to why this had not worked would be because I believe human greed and selfishness is the biggest obstacle on the road to pure Communism. Nobody wants to work hard for the community, they want to work hard for the betterment of themselves. In a world where everyone everyone will be selfish like that, I don’t think democracy will work. There has to be an iron fist leader with good intentions. This is why he set up neighborhood ‘spies’ to seek and silence anit-revolutioanries. These people were obviosly the greedy that were only willing to work for the benefit of themselves. As part of Communism he set up housing for homeless famillies and provided free quality healthcare. Soon, as people reached a certain level, it became clear that everyone wanted to rise above the rest, going against the idea imposed by Fidel. To prevent this he had to become a harsh dictator, dictating social and professional organizations, media, education and art.

EXTRA: Why Dictate Communism?

When first imposing Communism on a country, I dont think that it needs to be dictated or imposed by with an iron fist. In the first place the reason the leader would have chosen Communism was becuase thats what the majority of the popultaion wanted/needs. So therefore one does not need to force people to do what they want or need. However after a while when people become more capabale and they are out of their situation of extreme poverty they will start to want to do better, go farther, be better than everyone else. But obviosly the only way you can do this is if you work for the benefit of yourself. The only way to do this is if you work hard and get paid for your efforts in return. The problem with communism is that you can work hard but you will be paid back grattitude and recognision as a ‘good’ person. The benefits of your work will be benefits to the community. So clearly one cannot be better than the rest and ironicalll people start to revolt the revolution. This is where the harshness of the leader comes in as he or she has to take drastuic measures to keep the crowd in control in a Communisitc governing system. This includes silencing the oppositions, and thus making him or her only as bad as the leader they ousted. There’s a quote from Batman: The Dark Knight that really got my attention and can be used here: “You either die a hero or you live long enough to see yourself become the villain.”

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