An ongoing part of this project is to undertake certain short tasks that are designed to provoke deeper thinking and critical analysis without consuming vasts amounts of time. Our latest undertaking sees each of us set a location and topic and using google maps we should find a series of images that represents our topic.
I was assigned Gdansk, Poland as a location and politics as my subject.
After World War II had ended Poland began rebuilding its cities and towns. In 1952 Russia began investing heavily into Poland and started to have a major influence over internal political affairs. Huge numbers of Red Army troops were stationed across the country and ultimately Poland became a Soviet Satellite state under a communist regime. Gdansk is situated on the Northern Polish coastline and is the home to a major shipping yard which quickly became the industrial and economic centre of the city.
The Polish people endured over 2 decades of political instability as the Stalinist regime was progressively changed leading to a major economic crisis. In 1970 following a major price hike in food and other everyday items a revolt spread across Gdansk with many shipyard workers leading a protest of the governments handling of the economy. The political powers reacted swiftly and brutally, opening fire on peaceful demonstrators Killing seven and injuring hundreds more.
Poland remained under communist rule until 1989 when a political party that was formed in the Dockyards took power. Solidarity was heavily funded by the US government and formed a civil resistance movement. It grew in size and eventually became the largest political organisation in the country. Eventually it forced semi-free elections and took power forming a socialist coalition government in 1990 and saw its leader Lech Walesa elected as President of Poland.
Now in 2013 the current president Donald Tusk is also from Gdansk and the city is home to many local government agencies.
I can clearly see how using google maps will be helpful in this project. I am going to be heading out looking for rural villages, This will ultimately save time and money as it will allow me to scout ahead for good locations and be able to see a range of places without the need to physically visit.