In 1991, General Secretary Gorbachev “desperately sought to preserve the Soviet Union as a federal state,” as it teetered on the brink of collapse (Freeze 463). The Soviet Union’s unraveling had been coming for decades, but it was sped up by a number of factors. First were the structural flaws of the economy, which had … Continue reading Party Politics No Longer →
The Twentieth Party Congress (1956) served as a “watershed” moment in the political history of the Soviet Union (Freeze 416). It included many new faces in the delegation, as a means for Khrushchev to consolidate power, and avoided the contentious issue of Stalin’s legacy initially (Freeze 416). That changed with Khrushchev’s “bombshell,” “late-night” speech on … Continue reading Secrecy Then, Secrecy Now: Khrushchev’s Denunciation of Stalinism →
“’Life has become more joyous,’ Stalin exulted in November 1935” (Freeze pg. 362). And indeed, despite the brutality that would ensue with the Great Purges of 1936-38, it had; the mid-1930s brought an “imagined harmony” in the Soviet Union (Freeze pg. 362). Former enemies’ of Stalin began to heap praise on the dictator, most notably … Continue reading The Illusion of the New Soviet Man →
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Good company in a journey makes the way seem shorter. — Izaak Walton