Noam Chomsky pointed out when he was observing the role of the press during the Vietnam War, that it had a significant role to play in atrocities. The job of print and broadcast media, he argued, was to legitimise and explain away mass killings and to tell the story of why they were necessary. LookingContinue reading “Pravda and Stalin’s Terror”
Here is another article from the archives, one that I enjoyed writing some years ago on my teaching blog: Ok, so this might be useful for teachers of modern Britain (1930s) and teachers of Soviet Russia. In the early 1930s the USSR had a complex relationship with western intellectuals, it has been described by historianContinue reading “Stalin and HG Wells”
What often gets overlooked in the examination of the great terror (and other 20th Century terrors) is the experience of ordinary people and their thoughts, fears and survival strategies. During the Cold War an immense amount of scholarship went into fathoming the internal workings of the soviet state and the reasoning of Stalin and hisContinue reading “Everyday life and terror – 1937”
Here I address the question as the the economic rationale behind the Gulag system and its dismantling after the Stalin era.
Here too is a quick nano-vid on the subject of Stalin’s rise to power
In 1928 the Soviet economy experienced a moment of massive change. For four years, as power struggles between Stalin and the ‘troika’ of Trotsky, Zinoviev and Kamenev left Russia in a period of confused collective leadership, the biggest question had been one of economic direction. It was unclear how long Lenin’s New Economic Policy thatContinue reading “Hunger, Housing and Stalin’s First Five Year Plan”
The October Revolution of 1917 was at once a break with the past, a new beginning and an end of history, three ideas encapsulated within the dialectic of Marxism and the Hegelian eschatology that Marx’s ideas were based upon. A revolution staged by a radical intelligentsia who claimed to have correctly interpreted the processes ofContinue reading “Stalinist Architecture”