What does a Soviet schoolchild know about the West?

Grigori Reznichenko ::: Young people in the USSR. Answers to questions

We have more than 45 million pupils in our schools. On exams each one of them shows what In' really knows. What they are supposed to know is this:

They should be able to read, speak and write in one of the main Western languages: English, ITcnch, German or Spanish. They have 576 school- hours in such a course.

They should know the geography of the Western countries: natural conditions, population, state sys­tem, general economic picture, main industries and economic regions.

They are given 78 hours of Western history. And

of course, they are given a general picture of West­ern art and literature, classic and modern.

This list includes only compulsory subjects and indicates the minimum of required knowledge. Apart from that, each pupil is free to choose any subject and go into it more deeply.

Is that much or very little? At any rate, our aver­age schoolchild usually knows much more about the United States, say, than an American pupil knows about our country.

Naturally our schoolchildren are expected to learn not only about the West, but also about other parts of the world, and especially the socialist countries.