Is Smiling Allowed in Soviet Schools?

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In summary: I'm not sure how prevalent it is now, but back then it seemed like it was pretty common.Overall, the painting is very well done, but it's quite striking that it's been stolen several times. I wonder if it's because it captures an aspect of reality that many people don't want to see.
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wrobel
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Here are two pictures attached. The first picture is a photo from Russian secondary school 1967.
The second picture is a painting by an American artist Norman Rockwell. He used the photo as a sample.
There are ordinary children at the photo, the girl laughs. At the painting the children stare straight ahead tensely at Lenin's bust. A teacher will surely send them to Siberia if they admit a smile. Or maybe they look in the Communist future.

Soviet propaganda kept up.

It is interesting that this painting had been stolen and found several times until Steven Spielberg bought it.
 

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Stereotype:
_hDIByU-Lf4K2CAT2AgNssxMk5PvK0aEuhdybS-R4&usqp=CAU.jpg


Reality:

fressgassfest_ahenninger_0101__400x300.jpg
 
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One of the things I've learned from my EMS shifts is to resist the urge to stereotype. It's not always easy to do, but the few times I've let myself succumb to that urge, I've usually been proven wrong as I got to know my patient. That only has to happen a few times before you start making it a knee-jerk habit to remind yourself not to stereotype as you first encounter a new patient...
 
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Copied from
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Russian_Schoolroom

"Russian Schoolroom was published in the October 3, 1967, edition of Look as part of a series of articles on life in the Soviet Union. Rockwell had visited School No. 29 in Moscow where he drew puppy sketches on a chalkboard. Reference photos of the Moscow classroom with pupils, taken as a model for Rockwell's final painting, reveal that the inattentive pupil is actually paying close attention to the teacher, with eyes front. It has been suggested that in changing this detail, Rockwell slightly subverted the image to make a subtle political point in favor of non-conformity. Additional reference photos show Rockwell himself sitting in that student's seat, apparently demonstrating a distracted look, which the student then emulated."

More about the artist:
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Norman_Rockwell
 
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wrobel said:
There are ordinary children at the photo, the girl laughs. At the painting the children stare straight ahead tensely at Lenin's bust. A teacher will surely send them to Siberia if they admit a smile. Or maybe they look in the Communist future.
I must say... the photo evokes a far more accurate recollection of (most of my classes in) primary and secondary school. :oldfrown:

In the (minority of) classes where the kids often smiled and laughed, I got the feeling the teacher wasn't really interested in, well, teaching. I never felt I learned much during that type of "please like me" teaching style.
 

Related to Is Smiling Allowed in Soviet Schools?

1. Is smiling allowed in Soviet schools?

Yes, smiling was allowed in Soviet schools, but it was not always encouraged. The Soviet education system placed a strong emphasis on discipline and conformity, so students were expected to maintain a serious and stoic demeanor.

2. Were there consequences for smiling in Soviet schools?

There were no specific consequences for smiling in Soviet schools, but it was not seen as appropriate behavior. Students who were caught smiling too often may have been reprimanded by teachers or seen as disobedient by their peers.

3. Was there any form of expression or happiness allowed in Soviet schools?

Soviet schools did not prohibit all forms of expression or happiness. Students were allowed to participate in activities such as singing and dancing, which were seen as forms of cultural expression. However, these activities were often closely monitored and controlled by the government.

4. Did Soviet schools have any policies specifically against smiling?

There were no specific policies against smiling in Soviet schools, but the overall atmosphere and culture of the education system discouraged it. The focus was on academic achievement and conformity rather than promoting individual expression and happiness.

5. How did the lack of smiling in Soviet schools affect students?

The lack of smiling in Soviet schools may have contributed to a more serious and reserved attitude among students. It may have also hindered their ability to express themselves and their emotions freely. However, it is important to note that the impact of this on individual students may have varied.

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