Welcome to the fifth edition of our digest of Soviet History. This week we turned our attentions to the social, economic and political parameters of de-Stalinization. We have a bumper crop of terrific posts focusing on the fallout of the “Secret Speech,” changing gender norms (again), sports and television, Other significant topics include the cultural ferment of “The Thaw,” and new forms of expression and leisure. I am delighted to report that we had a clear winner for Students’ Choice. You will see it’s sputnik graphic near the top of the website.
We are taking a break next couple of weeks for midterms but will be back in your feed for a final digest in early May. Enjoy this deluxe edition!
By G. Savitsky, USSR Post. – свой скан бумажных марок из личной коллекции, Public Domain, Link
The imperative of order 227 (and the potential punishment for failure to obey the command to not retreat) conveys the all-encompassing urgency of the Soviet Union’s struggle to defend itself and repel the German invaders during World War II.This weekly edition features a rich assortment of posts on the many facets of that costly defense — from the evacuation of factories from the country’s West to safety behind the Urals, to snipers, Arctic Convoys, a new national anthem, and the broader reasons for the Soviets’ lack of preparedness for the war and for their eventual success.
Another set of posts takes up the challenges of rebuilding Soviet society and the economy after the devastation of the war. Gender and the family, the challenges facing returning veterans, and the emergence of the car as a symbol of postwar prosperity prove to be fascinating topics to explore how military victory conditioned the peace that followed.
Enjoy reading. We will be back with more features on the transition to life after the Vozhd’ next week.