Kwan's Modern World History Blog

Wednesday, October 18, 2006

Russian Propaganda Poster Project

Propaganda is a method of presenting and spreading ideas to influence people’s opinions and behavior. By using propaganda, people are not allowed to have their own outlook but are forced to believe what is told. Some propagandists use half-truths and distorts the facts. However, in Russia, this technique was very popular and effective. The message in propaganda was carried out through newspapers, radios, posters, etc. Studying propaganda posters help us to learn about the main ideas in the Russian history, the ideas that widely spread in that period. They also show us the way of living of the Russians in the past.

This poster from 1918 shows the harsh working conditions of the Russian Labouring People. They encountered starvation and extreme poverty while the Tsar, priests and rich men had absolute control over them and lead a luxurious life. Skeletons and dead bodies are scattered on the ground which proves that the peasants and workers lives were miserable that they died. Many soldiers also died during the war. The main color is the gloomy brown which shows sadness and poor conditions of the peasants; their clothes were torn and even a little kid had to tolerate this harsh condition while the Tsar’s color is rich with orange and yellow. It is trying to get us to think that the Tsar is careless about his citizens, ignoring their health and living condition, and used his wealth to pleasure himself and the nobles. The Tsar was selfish. The difference in the conditions of the peasants and the Tsar is very effective. We could obviously see that the peasants are skeletal and suffering while the Tsar has extravagant costume and is taking advantage of the peasants.
The star is the symbol of USSR. In this poster, the star is constructed from the industrialization and working men. This means USSR was trying to improve its industry and trying to build more factories which are represented by the smoke in red. The red color means revolution and changes. It is trying to get people to modernize Russia and turn it into a key of industrialization. Men building factories are effective because they form a symbol of the USSR star.
The joyful faces of the people show that they were happy to have Stalin as their leader and were willing to give him support while Stalin claps his hands to show that he was thankful for them. People raise red flags which are the color flags for the revolution and hold up pictures of Stalin. This shows that they were satisfied with the revolution and the leader. The brown color resembles poverty and low status of the peasants and farmers, but with the red color contrasting it and the cheerful emotions, it shows that these working class people were really glad to have a revolution. The cheering crowd is very effective in this poster. It shows that Stalin gained a lot of support. This poster is trying to get people to join the revolution and give support to Stalin.
By the red color on the cloth, this picture strongly conveys the symbol of the revolution. The soldier with full-armed weapons is paying respect the red cloth, which is the color of the revolution, to show reverence to the revolution he is serving for. The sincerity in his face is very effective in this poster because it shows that he was loyal. It is trying to get people to start or continue to be loyal and respectful to the Russian Revolution as this soldier was.
In this poster, the star is the center of attention. It is the symbol for the USSR. A woman with a sickle and a man with a hammer represent the hard-working farmers and workers who were fully supporting the revolution. The soldier with a gun has his chin up with pride and his facial expression reveals his strength of mind to stand up for his country. The soldier is the big and stands in the front because he took a major role in the revolution; the farmer and worker were the supporters. Red is the color of the revolution, and in this poster, red is very strong and effective. This poster is trying to get people to support the revolution. Whether we are farmers, workers, or soldiers, we should all turn to the revolution.
A thin, bony hand of an old peasant is pointing towards a large number of peasants and workers who are suffering from famine like himself. He tries to show that the Russian people are having a disastrous living condition. The dull colors of black and brown show the sorrow and the lack of energy. In the center of the poster are bread and food which were what the peasants need most. It is trying to get us to pay more attention to them and how poorly their livings are. They needed food and help. The number of the desperate peasants is so effective in this poster. It really shows that too many of them are suffering and proves that this was a really serious problem.


Each propaganda poster has its own way of conveying its own message. Most of the posters are about supporting the Russian Revolution. For the revolution to stage, a leader needs a lot of support. Industrialization and serving for the country was an important task for the working-class people. Some posters show how badly the peasants were treated and how they suffered. The Tsar had more than enough of everything while the peasants endured unbearable conditions which led to deaths. To Russia, revolution is vital. Effectively, propaganda was used to carry out these messages to all of the people.


  • At 5:26 AM, Blogger kwanris2006 said…

    The posters were carefully selected, and the layout is well designed. Seems like a lot of effort were put in it. I'm impressed!

  • At 6:49 AM, Blogger chanchanokris2006 said…

    that's sooo much writing!
    T^T makes other people's look bad!


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