Download A History of the Soviet Union by Peter Kenez PDF

By Peter Kenez

An exam of political, social and cultural advancements within the Soviet Union. The e-book identifies the social tensions and political inconsistencies that spurred radical swap within the govt of Russia, from the flip of the century to the revolution of 1917. Kenez envisions that revolution as a concern of authority that posed the query, 'Who shall govern Russia?' this question was once resolved with the construction of the Soviet Union. Kenez lines the improvement of the Soviet Union from the Revolution, in the course of the Nineteen Twenties, the years of the recent monetary regulations and into the Stalinist order. He exhibits how post-Stalin Soviet leaders struggled to discover how one can rule the rustic with no utilizing Stalin's tools but in addition with no brazenly repudiating the previous, and to barter a calm yet antipathetic coexistence with the capitalist West. during this new version, he additionally examines the post-Soviet interval, tracing Russia's improvement as much as the current day.

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In April 1917 such a program was breathtaking in its radicalism. The soviets, to which Lenin wanted to give power, belonged to his political enemies: the Bolsheviks made up only small minorities in the important soviets of the country. As far as the war was concerned, while the idea of continued fighting was increasingly unpopular, it is unlikely that a majority would have been willing to accept peace at any price. Hostility toward the Germans was still profound. Nevertheless, within a few weeks Lenin succeeded in winning over his party.

On the day after his victory he presented his decree on peace and land to the Congress of Soviets. The first one of these decrees was an appeal to all belligerent countries to commence negotiations for a just and democratic peace without indemnities or annexations. The second declared the land to be national property, but allowed peasants to cultivate it as their own. In practice this meant that the Bolsheviks officially recognized the peasants’ land confiscations. Creating a class The Revolution, 1917–1921 29 V.

As they saw it, their revolution could be successful in the long run only if it was aided by sympathetic, more advanced, and above all socialist nations. The expectation of a socialist revolution following the mad devastation of World War I was by no means nonsensical. Today we know that the revolution did not occur, that the old order reasserted itself. At the time, however, everyone, friend and foe alike, hoped for or feared just such a cataclysmic transformation. This expectation of world revolution was not a theoretical issue to the Leninists, but a matter that affected their everyday behavior.

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