Revolutionary Russia, 1891-1991: A Pelican Introduction

Revolutionary Russia, 1891-1991: A Pelican Introduction

Orlando Figes

Language: English

Pages: 0

ISBN: 0141043679

Format: PDF / Kindle (mobi) / ePub


What caused the russian revolution?did it succeed or fail?do we still live with its consequences?orlando figes teaches history at birkbeck, university of london and is the author of many acclaimed books on russian history, including a people's tragedy, which the times literary supplement named as one of the '100 most influential books since the war', natasha's dance, the whisperers, crimea and just send me word. The financial times called him 'the greatest storyteller of modern russian historians. '

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of the Soviet Union. Adopted by the 22nd Congress of the CPSU, October 31, 1961 (Moscow, 1961), pp. 9, 62. 3. Haslam, Russia’s Cold War, p. 248. 4. Our Course: Peace and Socialism. A Collection of Speeches by L. I. Brezhnev (Moscow, 1973), p. 226. 5. A. Konchalovsky, The Inner Circle: An Inside View of Soviet Life under Stalin (New York), 2007, p. 85. 6. R. Medvedev, On Socialist Democracy (London, 1975), p. 314. CHAPTER 19: THE LAST BOLSHEVIK 1. A. de Tocqueville, The Old Regime and

Union in the Cold War from Stalin to Gorbachev (Chapel Hill, NC, 2007); • Edwin Bacon, Brezhnev Reconsidered (Basingstoke, 2002); • Alexei Yurchak, Everything was Forever, Until It was No More: The Last Soviet Generation (Princeton, NJ, 2005); • David Remnick, Lenin’s Tomb: The Last Days of the Soviet Empire (London, 1993). THE AFTER-LIFE OF THE REVOLUTION: • Adam Hochschild, The Unquiet Ghost: Russians Remember Stalin (Harmondsworth, 1994); • David Satter, It was a Long Time Ago, and It

of a ‘bourgeois provocation’ (a shooting or a crime). One old man was arrested because during a general raid the Cheka found on his person a photograph of a man in court uniform: it was the picture of a deceased relative taken in the 1870s. The ingenuity of the Cheka’s torture methods was on a par with the Spanish Inquisition’s. Each local Cheka had its speciality. In Kharkov they went in for the ‘glove trick’ – putting the victim’s hands in boiling water until the blistered skin could be peeled

‘comrades’, but as ‘brothers and sisters, friends’, calling on them to unite in this ‘war of the entire Soviet people’.2 The invasion was the gravest crisis of the revolution. Hitler’s aim was to destroy the ‘Jewish Bolshevik’ regime, to colonize and exploit the resources of the Soviet Union for the Third Reich. By exporting food to Germany, the Nazis planned to starve to death some 30 million Soviet people during the winter of 1941–2. The Jews would be eliminated, and the remaining population

was his conduct in the war. The Soviet military revival was also the result of a transformation in the industrial economy. After the catastrophe of 1941, when the Red Army was poorly equipped compared to its adversary, there was a dramatic improvement in the production of tanks, planes, cars, radars, radios, artillery, guns and ammunition, allowing the formation of new tank and mechanized divisions which fought far more effectively. The rapid reorganization of Soviet industry was where the

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