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Session 5: Russia. Students will share their maps with the class. Students will identify Russia's main physical characteristics. Students will explain how location and climate affect Russia's ecosystems. Students will describe how Siberia offers opportunities and pose unique challenges. Suppose you have been hired to work for a company based in Siberia. Write three journal entries.

The first should describe your feelings before leaving for Siberia, and the second should describe your impressions upon arrival. The third should focus on how life in Siberia affects your work.

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You may wish to do additional research to complete this activity. Be ready to present your journal entries to the class in the next session. Session 6: Emergence of Russia. Students will define czar, abdicate, soviet, command economy, glasnost and perestroika. Students will present their journal entries. Students will examine how the Russian territory grew under the czars. Students will identify the economical and political conditions that marked the end of the Communist era. Students will explain how the end of Communist rule lead to changes in Russia.

Create a map of the region that shows the former Soviet Union, its satellite nations within the region, and other nations. You may wish to use different colors for each of these categories. Be ready to present your map in the next session. Session 7: Geographic Issues in Russia. Students will define ruble and black market.

Students will describe the defining characteristic of life in Russia today. Students will explain how ethnic turmoil challenges Russia. Students will identify the transportation methods that are common in Russia. Students will describe the economical and environmental problems that Russia faces today. They mutilated or killed their boy children! Modern mostly male scholars continued the confabulations. The Amazons were hard-core feminists. Man haters. Delinquent mothers. Drawing on a wealth of textual, artistic, and archaeological evidence, Adrienne Mayor , author of The Amazons , dispels these myths and takes us inside the truly wild and wonderful world of these ancient warrior women.

Talking from her home in Palo Alto, California, she explains what Johnny Depp has in common with Amazons, why the Amazon spirit is breaking out all over pop culture, and who invented trousers. We associate the word Amazon with digital book sales these days. Tell us about the real Amazons. The real Amazons were long believed to be purely imaginary.

They were the mythical warrior women who were the archenemies of the ancient Greeks. Every Greek hero or champion, from Hercules to Theseus and Achilles, had to prove his mettle by fighting a powerful warrior queen. We know their names: Hippolyta, Antiope, Thessalia. But they were long thought to be just travelers' tales or products of the Greek storytelling imagination. A lot of scholars still argue that. But archaeology has now proven without a doubt that there really were women fitting the description that the Greeks gave us of Amazons and warrior women. The Greeks located them in the areas north and east of the Mediterranean on the vast steppes of Eurasia.

Archaeologists have been digging up thousands of graves of people called Scythians by the Greeks. They turn out to be people whose women fought, hunted, rode horses, used bows and arrows, just like the men. See "Masters of Gold.


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What archaeological proofs have been discovered to show that these mythical beings actually existed? They've been excavating Scythian kurgans , which are the burial mounds of these nomadic peoples. They all had horse-centred lifestyles, ranging across vast distances from the Black Sea all the way to Mongolia. They lived in small tribes, so it makes sense that everyone in the tribe is a stakeholder.


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They all have to contribute to defense and to war efforts and hunting. They all have to be able to defend themselves. The great equalizer for those peoples was the domestication of horses and the invention of horse riding, followed by the perfection of the Scythian bow, which is smaller and very powerful. If you think about it, a woman on a horse with a bow, trained since childhood, can be just as fast and as deadly as a boy or man. Archaeologists have found skeletons buried with bows and arrows and quivers and spears and horses. At first they assumed that anyone buried with weapons in that region must have been a male warrior.

But with the advent of DNA testing and other bioarchaeological scientific analysis, they've found that about one-third of all Scythian women are buried with weapons and have war injuries just like the men. The women were also buried with knives and daggers and tools.

So burial with masculine-seeming grave goods is no longer taken as an indicator of a male warrior. It's overwhelming proof that there were women answering to the description of the ancient Amazons.

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It's the one thing everyone seems to think they know about Amazons: that the name has something to do with only having one breast so they could easily fire an arrow or hurl a spear. But anyone who's watched The Hunger Games , or female archers, knows that that is an absolutely physiologically ridiculous idea. Indeed, no ancient Greek artworks—and there are thousands—show a woman with one breast.

All modern scholars point out that the plural noun "Amazones" was not originally a Greek word—and has nothing to do with breasts. The notion that "Amazon" meant "without breast" was invented by the Greek historian Hellanikos in the fifth century B. He tried to force a Greek meaning on the foreign loan word: a for "lack" and "mazon," which sounded a bit like the Greek word for breast.

His idea was rejected by other historians of his own day, and no ancient artist bought the story. But it stuck like superglue. Two early reviews of my book even claimed I accept that false etymology. Linguists today suggest that the name derives from ancient Iranian or Caucasian roots. You describe them as "aggressive, independent man-killers. That is one of the ideas that have arisen in modern times.

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Nobody in antiquity ever suggested that. We know that the ancient Greeks and Romans were not shy about discussing homosexuality among men or women. So if that idea had been current in antiquity, someone would have mentioned it.

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The one interesting artistic bit of evidence that I did find is a vase that shows a Thracian huntress giving a love gift to the Queen of the Amazons, Penthesilea. That's a strong indication that at least someone thought of the idea of a love affair between Amazons.

But just because we don't have any written evidence and only that one unique vase doesn't preclude that Amazons might have had relations with each other. It's just that it has nothing to do with the ancient idea of Amazons. The strong bond of sisterhood was a famous trait in classical art and literature about Amazons.

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But it was modern people who interpreted that as a sexual preference for women. That started in the 20th century. The Russian poet Marina Tsvetaeva declared that Amazons were symbolic of lesbianism in antiquity. Then others took that up. But the ancient Greeks didn't think of them as lesbians. They described them as lovers of men, actually. Man-killers—and man lovers. I used that phrase in the dedication to a good friend of mine, Sunny Bock. She was a strong figure who believed in equality between men and women. She rode motorcycles, she rode horses, then became the first female railroad engineer.

She was a risktaker who died an untimely death, probably because of her life of risk. She embodied the Amazon spirit: the assumption that women are the equals of men and that they could be just as noble and brave and heroic. That comes through in the artworks and literature about Amazons. The Greeks were both fascinated and appalled by such independent women.


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They were so different from their wives and daughters. Yet there was a fascination. They were captivated by them.