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The Stalin Years: A Reader

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Ever since his rise to power Stalin has been a controversial figure. From the hatred of his Trotsky-supporting contemporaries to the uncritical adulation of present-day followers in Russia and his native land of Georgia, he has stirred passions and arguments. Traditionally, scholars, too, have been equally divided into totalitarians and revisionists. Despite the differences, however, one feature has remained constant: the vast majority of views of Stalin have been highly politically charged. In this collection of...
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Overview

Ever since his rise to power Stalin has been a controversial figure. From the hatred of his Trotsky-supporting contemporaries to the uncritical adulation of present-day followers in Russia and his native land of Georgia, he has stirred passions and arguments. Traditionally, scholars, too, have been equally divided into totalitarians and revisionists. Despite the differences, however, one feature has remained constant: the vast majority of views of Stalin have been highly politically charged. In this collection of cutting-edge research, Christopher Read guides the reader through the turbulent history of the Stalin years using post-Soviet articles which provide more balanced and scholarly assessments of the leader's time in power. The essays examine not only Stalin's central role and the key points of his rule from the late 1920s to the postwar years, but also look at Russian society as a whole. Taken together with Read's own contributions, which include an up-to-date historiographic survey, they constitute a complex and dynamic history of the central features of a terrible era. Containing a helpful glossary and a chronology of the life and times of Stalin, this indispensable volume will be the first recourse for all those with an interest in the debates surrounding Stalin's Russia.
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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
"This is a very welcome, interesting, and useful addition to the literature on Stalin and the Stalinist system. It will make available a diverse selection of material. The material contributed by the editor is also very useful: clearly written, balanced and yet also provocative in places. It provides an excellent introduction to the historiography, and importantly locates it in the wider historical, cultural, and political context of its time." — Mark Sandle, De Montfort University
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780333963425
  • Publisher: Palgrave Macmillan
  • Publication date: 3/19/2003
  • Edition description: REV
  • Pages: 240
  • Product dimensions: 5.68 (w) x 8.48 (h) x 0.79 (d)

Meet the Author

Christopher Read is Professor of History, University of Warwick.

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Table of Contents

Preface
Acknowledgements
Glossary
Notes on the Contributors
Stalin's Life and Times
I Main Currents of Interpretation of Stalin and the Stalin Years 1
II Cultural Revolution 23
1 'The Modernization of Russian Motherhood, 1917-37' 25
2 'The 1929 Congress of the Godless' 41
III Industrialization and Collectivization 66
3 'Building the "Soviet Detroit": the Construction of the Nizhnii-Novgorod Automobile Factory, 1927-32' 70
4 'Stalin, Grain Stocks and the Famine of 1932-3' 86
IV The Great Terror 102
5 'The Objectives of the Great Terror, 1937-87' 104
6 'How the Mice Buried the Cat: Scenes from the Great Purges of 1937 in the Russian Provinces' 121
V The Great Fatherland War 145
7 'Soviet Women at War' 148
VI The Final Years 169
8 'Moscow and the Marshall Plan: Politics, Ideology and the Onset of the Cold War, 1947' 170
9 'Stalin's Cabinet: the Politburo and Decision Making in the Postwar Years' 192
VII Some Reflections on Stalinism 213
10 'Stalinism as a Civilization' 213
The Emerging Picture: Some Concluding Thoughts 225
Bibliography 231
Index 236
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