Timeline Outlines due: Wed., Sep. 20th (category = RR timeline outline)
Timeline Prototype 1 due: Fri., Sep. 22th (category = RR timeline prototype 1)
Timeline Prototype 2 due: Fri., Sep. 30th (category = RR timeline prototype 2
Comments on Prototype 2 due: Wed., Oct. 4, by 9:30 am
Final Prototype due: Fri., Oct. 6th, before you leave for break (category = RR timeline final)

For this assignment, you have been assigned to teams of 3-4. Each team will create a JS Timeline focused on some aspect of the Russian Revolution up until the death of Lenin in 1924.  Here’s the timeline tool: http://timeline.knightlab.com/ This is a fun, easy tool to use to create beautiful timelines using a Google spreadsheet. You may share the spreadsheet with everyone on your team, and each team member can then link and display your timeline in your own domain, as well as on our course website.

Knightlab recommends limiting timelines to 20 slides, so you will have to work with your teammates to select a topic, hone your focus, and curate your choices. Each person in your group is responsible for a 3 slides, plus a title slide and a works cited slide (11-14 slides total).

Do not try to create a comprehensive timeline of the Russian Revolution. Instead, go for depth rather than breadth. Focus on a specific person, issue, or question of interest to you and your teammates, for example:

  • person: Trotsky was such an influential, charismatic figure on the American scene. How did he come to prominence in the U.S. and how did he drop out of the picture in Russia? Or investigate a less well known figure such as Bolshevik Alexandra Kollontai, a brilliant, radical thinker on issues ranging from workers’ rights to gender roles and sexual morality.
  • issue: your timeline might focus on an issue such as industrialization, economic policies, international influences, the role of women, the persecution of Jews, the expression and criminalization of homosexuality, artistic representations, or musical responses (such as this popular soldiers’ song: “Sure we’d like some tea/ But give us with our tea/ Some polite respect /And please have officers /Not slap us in the face.”)
  • event: parades, manifestos, marches, or massacres
  • question: populism vs. intelligentsia is a factual conflict alive and well in the U.S. today: how did these factions animate and influence the course of the Russian Revolution?
  • question: what role did poetry play in the Russian Revolution (okay, admittedly that’s Dr. ‘Chill’s question, but seriously, poets and writers play a much bigger role Russian culture and politics, then and now, then they do in our own, so it’s worth investigating).
  • question: can we trace the rise and fall of the Bolsheviks, Mensheviks, and other parties and figure out what each stood for and when?

Don’t limit yourself to these ideas and questions. Talk with your teammates about the parts of Fitzpatrick’s history that you found most knotty, confusing, or fascinating. Use your timeline to untangle your confusion, answer your question, or satiate your desire to know more. Choose an event, person, issue, or question that intrigues you research backward and/or forward in time to understand its origins and development.

You can also select a topic from something you discover in a primary source — such as one of the magazines or books you examined in the Rare Books Room, or one of the artifacts you discovered in the Marxist Archive.

Once you’ve chosen a topic or angle, you may find it helpful to begin your research by making an appointment with a librarian, using the online appointment booking form: http://davidson.libguides.com/askalibrarian.

Another good place to ground your initial research is by consulting tertiary sources on the event, figure, or issue you want to explore — i.e., reference sources such as encyclopedias, dictionaries, and guides. These are sources that present generally agreed upon information about the subject.

From tertiary sources, you can then turn to secondary sources for more recent, focused, controversial takes on the topic. Start with the most recent articles and work backwards, using Project Muse, J-Stor, and Pro-Quest Research Tools, which often link you to full-text articles. If you find a book on your topic via the Library catalog, read a book review first before tackling the whole book. When you get to the book, start by outlining the introduction, using the table of contents and index to find relevant sections. To read articles and chapters efficiently and effectively, try doing a secondary source report

Your timelines must include a bibliography of all works cited and consulted, as well as citations for all images.

Your individual project grade will be weighted toward the 3 slides you create and the quality of your reflection essay. To encourage you to work together and edit each other’s slides, your team can earn up to 10 points for consistency of narrative voice/perspective and aesthetics/style.

Sample Timelines
Timeline Rubric

Your timelines will be graded according to the following rubric (which we can adapt if you think we’ve left out something important or haven’t weighted the work involved properly):

  • clarity and focus of topic – 10 pts
  • accuracy and relevance of images – 10 pts
  • quality of images (size, cropping, pixelation) – 10 pts
  • accuracy and precision of narrative – 1o pts
  • efficient/effective use of slide headers – 10 pts
  • conciseness & active voice – 10 pts
  • proofreading & correct grammar/punctuation – 10 pts
  • works cited for both text and images – 1o pts
  • consistency of narrative voice/perspective – 5 pts
  • consistency of aesthetics/style – 5 pts
  • reflection essays – 10 pts

Each team member must write an individual reflection essay in which you:

  • describe your team’s goals and the process of your collaboration,
  • identify your specific contributions to the project,
  • evaluate the strengths and weaknesses of the timeline in relation to the goals you set,
  • reflect on what you learned about the topic and about yourself in the course of the project.

The most successful teams revisit our full value contract, using it to facilitate conversations about process and product. Successful teams also assign roles and responsibilities, and create a calendar of internal deadlines, using whatever tool they find most helpful (google docs, google calendars, Outlook, Slack, etc… Establishing clear roles, responsibilities, and deadlines up front helps distribute the work evenly and keep everyone up to speed.

Timeline Outlines Due: Wed., Sep. 20th

Each team must create a single post (category = timeline outline) outlining the 11-14 slides you plan to create and identifying who will create which slides. Include a preliminary bibliography of at least 6 primary sources, 3 tertiary sources, and 3 secondary sources relevant to your timeline. Your outline should also identify your individual roles and responsibilities in your team.

Prototype 1 Due: Fri., Sep. 22nd

Prototype 1 should include a title  and bibliography slide, as well as preliminary content (text and images) for at least one slide for each team member. The goal of Prototype 1 should be to gain familiarity and facility with the JS Timeline tool and to use it to produce a “minimal viable product”—a basic working timeline.

Prototype 2 Due: Fri., Sep. 30th

Prototype 2 should include all the slides you plan for the final, with images and narrative text. If you are unable to assemble all the images and/or write all the text by the due date, you should at the very lease include placeholder images and “coming soon” descriptions of what you intend to show and say on a given slide. Your draft should allow users to see and understand the topic and full span of your timeline.

To post your Prototype 2 to our course website, each team must create a single post (category = prototype 2) embedding your timeline within an i-frame (follow JS Timeline instructions) or at the very least providing an active hyperlink (check “open link in new window”). This post should include revised list of your 11-14 slides, with by-lines for each slide. Cut and paste all the text from your timeline into the post, so that we can see and comment on it using Hypothes.is. Extracting the text into a narrative will also help you see and revise your timelines more effectively.

Your draft posts should follow this format:

Title of Timeline
Creators of Timeline
Hyperlink to timeline [be sure to select “open link in new window”]

  1. Topic/heading, author
    [paste slide text]
  2. Topic/heading, author
    [paste slide text]
  3. Repeat until…
  4. Works Cited
    [paste slide text]

Works Consulted
[list any works that don’t fit on your works cited slide]

Your slide show should include a complete bibliography or works cited, as well as image citations. If you need to save space on the Works Cited slide, you can move any Works Consulted from the slide show to the body of your post.

Comments on Prototype 2 due: Oct. 4, by 9:30 am

Each individual should read the timelines using the comment function to provide one summary comment and Hypothes.is to provide 2-3 annotations on the text. Follow the “No Sweat Method” but adapt it to provide UX feedback, telling the creators about your experience reading and following the timeline: where were you captivated or confused? What held your attention? What distracted, bored, or frustrated you?

Final Version Due: Fri., Oct. 6th, before you leave for break.

Each team must create a single post (category = timeline final) with an active hyperlink to your timeline, with your timeline embedded in an i-frame or an active hyperlink to your timeline. Include a revised list of the 11-18 slides that with bylines for each. Each individual must submit 2 copies of printed, stapled, individual reflection essay to Dr. Rigger or Dr. Churchill before you leave for break, signed and pledged with the honor code, along with a completed rubric in which you evaluate your own timeline.


Note: team names are just for fun & do not need to reflect the focus of your timelines.

  • Wiley
  • Hanaa
  • Cole
  • Anna
  • Alan
  • Daniel
  • Nina
  • Henry
  • Lucas
  • Raven
  • Ellie
  • Jeffrey
  • Wilbert
  • Maria
  • Chloe