Peasant Rebels under Stalin: Collectivization and the Culture of Peasant Resistance / Edition 1

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Overview

The first book to document the peasant rebellion against Soviet collectivization, Peasant Rebels Under Stalin retrieves a crucial lost chapter from the history of Stalinist Russia. The peasant revolt against collectivization, as reconstructed by author Lynne Viola, was the most violent and sustained resistance to the Soviet state after the Russian Civil War. Conservative estimates suggest that over the course of the 1020s and early 1930s, more than 1,100 people were assassinated, more than 13,000 villages rioted, and over 2.5 million people participated in this active struggle of resistance.

This book is about the men and women who tried to preserve their families, communities, and beliefs from the depredations of Stalinism. Their acts were often heroic, but these heroes were homespun, ordinary people who were driven to acts of desperation by cruel and brutal state policies.

This is a study of peasant community, culture, and politics through the prism of resistance. Based on newly declassified Soviet archives, including previously inaccessible OGPU (secret police) reports, Viola's work documents the manifestation in Stalin's Russia of universal strategies of peasant resistance in what amounted to a virtual civil war between state and peasantry. This book is must reading for scholars of Soviet history, Stalinism, popular resistance, and Russian peasant culture.

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
"An important contribution to the social history of collectivization, the Soviet peasantry, and peasant resistance in general."—Choice

"This is an impressively researched and well written study that will surely become a standard work on Soviet collectivization and peasant revolt. It is a book steeped in the comparative literature of peasant studies as well as in Soviet archival materials, and social historians outside the Russian field should find it no less engrossing and valuable than their colleagues in Russian/Soviet history."—Journal of Social History

"Viola merits praise for drawing new attention to the question and for recovering lost voices who nearly drowned in the cataclysms of recent times."—Agricultural History

"Viola documents each of her major themes in a meticulous and compelling way thereby making Peasant Rebels under Stalin an impressive scholarly achievement. Her work breaks new ground..."—Canadian Slavonic Papers

"Peasant Rebels Under Stalin will undoubtedly become the standard work for understanding the stages and wide variety of responses to the Soviet party-state's violent assault on the countryside and rural culture generally."—Slavic Review

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780195131048
  • Publisher: Oxford University Press, USA
  • Publication date: 1/28/1999
  • Edition description: New Edition
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 328
  • Sales rank: 1,017,422
  • Lexile: 1660L (what's this?)
  • Product dimensions: 6.20 (w) x 9.10 (h) x 1.00 (d)

Meet the Author

Lynne Viola is Professor of History and a member of the Centre for Russian and East European Studies at the University of Toronto. Her previous books include The Best Sons of the Fatherland (OUP, 1987), A Researcher's Guide to Sources on Soviet Social History (co-editor, 1990), and Russian Peasant Women (co-editor, OUP, 1992).

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Table of Contents

Introduction
1. The Last and Most Decisive Battle: Collectivization as Civil War
2. The Mark of Antichrist: Rumors and the Ideology of Peasant Resistance
3. "We Have No Kulaks Here": Peasant Luddism, Evasion, and Self-Help
4. Sawed-Off Shotguns and the Red Rooster: Peasant Terror and Civil War
5. March Fever: Peasant Rebels and Kulak Insurrection
6. "We Let the Women Do the Talking": Bab'i Bunty and the Anatomy of Peasant Revolt
7. On the Sly: Everyday Forms of Resistance in the Collective Farm, 1930 and Beyond

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