January 31, 1928 — Leon Trotsky exiled from the Soviet Union

Trotsky was Lenin’s second-in-command during the Russian Revolution, and later the first leader of the Red Army and a high-ranking Politburo member. But after the death of Lenin in 1924, he lost power and position to Stalin. In 1928, Trotsky was exiled to Alma Ata in Kazakhstan. A year later, he was expelled from the Soviet Union, and sent to Turkey, accompanied by his wife Natalia Sedova and his son Lev Sedov.

His exile marked the end of any serious internal opposition to Stalin in the Soviet Union, with most of his followers either fleeing the country or surrendering. Trotsky continued to advocate his opposition to Stalin from outside the country. A constant thorn in Stalin’s side, he was assassinated in Mexico by a Soviet agent in 1940.

Photograph of Trotsky in 1929
By Bundesarchiv, Bild 183-R15068 / CC-BY-SA 3.0, CC BY-SA 3.0 de, Link

As mentioned in:

The Purge — Catch 22

March 19, 1928 — “Amos ‘n’ Andy” premieres on radio station WMAQ Chicago

Freeman Gosden and Charles Correll were a pair of comedians and actors who, in 1926, created one of the earliest serialised radio shows, a comedy (with occasional dramatic elements) entitled “Sam ‘n’ Henry”. Which is fine and dandy, although presenting one major problem to us today: Correll and Gosden were white men who parlayed an ability to impersonate black men into a highly successful career.

Their true success began with their subsequent creation, the radio serial “Amos ‘n’ Andy”. This series would run for over thirty years, spawning a film and a television series as spin offs, and become an unforgettable part of mid-twentieth century American culture. It would also, in its later years, become quite controversial for its portrayal of black characters by white actors and its use of negative stereotypes in its characters. Although some have argued that some of its “racist” stereotypes were more accurately seen as comedic stereotypes who happened to be black, but given that these were among the very few black characters on television at all, the overall effect was a negative one on black and white listeners (and later viewers) alike.

Amos andy 1929 postcard.JPG
By Surebest Bread – Transferred from en.wikipedia to Commons by Sreejithk2000 using CommonsHelper.
(Original text : eBay auction
card front
card back), Public Domain, Link

As mentioned in:

Famous And Dandy (Like Amos And Andy) — The Disposable Heroes Of Hiphoprisy

May 25, 1928 — Claude Debussy dies

One of the most popular and influential of all French composers, Claude Achille Debussy was on August 22, 1862. Debussy was a tireless experimenter who was not satisfied to stay within the bounds of what his teachers taught, and this quality informs the majority of his compositions. For instance, he was the first European composer to show the influence of gamelan. By the turn of the century, he was not merely seen as one of the greatest living composers in France, but in most of Central Europe.

Debussy’s death from cancer occurred during the final months of World War One. He died in Paris while that city was being bombarded by the German Spring Offensive. As such, despite being one of the nation’s most honoured sons, he was buried with a minimum of ceremony. After the war concluded, he was reinterred in a style more fitting his influence and status.

head and shoulders photograph of middle-aged, white, dark-haired, bearded man
By Atelier Nadar, Paris – Bibliothèque nationale de France. Also published on the cover of Debussy’s Nocturnes, Durand, Paris, 1909., PD-US, Link

As mentioned in:

Decomposing Composers — Monty Python