A History of the Soviet Union from the Beginning to the End / Edition 2

A History of the Soviet Union from the Beginning to the End / Edition 2

by Peter Kenez
     
 

Peter Kenez's A History of the Soviet Union from the Beginning to the End examines not only political change but also social and cultural developments. The book identifies the social tensions and political inconsistencies that spurred radical change in the government of Russia, beginning at the turn of the century and culminating in the revolution of 1917. Kenez… See more details below

Overview

Peter Kenez's A History of the Soviet Union from the Beginning to the End examines not only political change but also social and cultural developments. The book identifies the social tensions and political inconsistencies that spurred radical change in the government of Russia, beginning at the turn of the century and culminating in the revolution of 1917. Kenez envisions that revolution as a crisis of authority that posed the question, "Who shall govern Russia?" This question was resolved with the creation of the Soviet Union. Kenez sees the 1920s, the years of the New Economic Policies, as crucial to any interpretation of the history of the Soviet Union. He points out the seeds of totalitarianism in the mixed economic and political system of those years, then traces the disintegration of that system, brought on by the confused policies enacted by officials who were ambivalent about the NEP. He shows that the crisis ended only when the system was completely dismantled and replaced by a new experiment: the Stalinist order. The leaders of the post-Stalin era attempted to determine a new direction for the Soviet Union. The 1960s to the 1980s were marked by a turn away from the dynamic "cult of personality" that characterized the earlier decades of the Soviet Union, toward collective leadership, conservatism, and corruption. The complacency and demoralization of those decades presage the disintegration of the Soviet Union under the leadership of Mikhail Gorbachev.

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Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780521682961
Publisher:
Cambridge University Press
Publication date:
05/08/2006
Edition description:
Revised
Pages:
354
Sales rank:
339,753
Product dimensions:
5.98(w) x 8.98(h) x 0.79(d)

Meet the Author

Peter Kenez received his B.A. from Princeton University and his Ph.D. from Harvard University. He is the author of many articles and books, including Cinema and Soviet Society, 1917–1953, and Varieties of Fear. He is currently Professor of History at the University of California, Santa Cruz.

Table of Contents

1Introduction1
2The revolution, 1917-192114
3New economic policies, 1921-192941
4The first five-year plan80
5High Stalinism103
6A great and patriotic war132
7The nadir : 1945-1953160
8The age of Khrushchev184
9Real, existing socialism214
10Failed reforms243
11Leap into the unknown278
12Afterthoughts, 2005303

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