The author analyzes modern Russian history from a new perspective. Due to the ideological heritage of the XIXth and XXth centuries, the social settings of the sociopolitical history of the USSR (1917–1945) have not been fully identified. Detailed examination of ideological and political concepts shows that the revolution of 1917 became not a middle class, proletarian movement, but rather a plebeian one. The misjudgment by the new power enabled growth but caused tremendous losses of human lives and material damages. Socialization of economy and strict centralization led to a new social structure and established terror as an instrument for social reorganization. WWII revealed the necessity of a correction of these developments, but the events of the Cold War circumvented any further considerations.
A Few Words in Conclusion
In recent decades, a number of studies and reflections have been published that compare the social and political systems of Stalin’s USSR and Nazi Germany. But this research direction should not overlook their substantial differences—differences in their economic and social bases, in their ideologies, objectives, and the real-world tasks that occupied them or that they wished to address. These pages have attempted to capture the development of the USSR from 1917 until 1945 in great detail, with a focus on the development of post-war. These pages have attempted to detail the development of the USSR from 1917 until 1945, weaving into the story the impact of Germany’s post-war development and the rise of the Nazi regime, itself the subject of an extensive global literature. While we do not wish to supplant that literature, we would wish to add a few words on the topic. The deep differences in starting conditions between Germany and Russia after World War I, both as regards economic and cultural development and as regards the level of civilization present and the standard of living, need little discussion. They are self-evident.
It must be acknowledged that during the interwar period the USSR was able to create the governmental, political, and economic basis to survive. But this came at the price of unimaginable sacrifice that impacted all levels of society, particularly peasants and the urban lower class because of the living conditions they had to endure. What was created, however, was not in...
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