Franklin

Stalin / Stephen Kotkin.

Author/Creator:
Kotkin, Stephen.
Publication:
New York : Penguin Press, 2014-
Format/Description:
Book
volumes : illustrations ; 25 cm
Status/Location:
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Subjects:
Stalin, Joseph, 1878-1953.
Stalin, Joseph, 1878-1953 -- Psychology.
Heads of state -- Soviet Union -- Biography.
Dictators -- Soviet Union -- Biography.
Soviet Union -- Politics and government -- 1917-1936.
Soviet Union -- Politics and government -- 1936-1953.
Political culture -- Soviet Union -- History.
Soviet Union -- History -- 1925-1953.
Dictators.
Heads of state.
Political culture.
Politics and government.
Psychology.
Soviet Union.
Local subjects:
Stalin, Joseph, 1879-1953. (search)
Form/Genre:
Biography.
History.
Summary:
"A magnificent new biography that revolutionizes our understanding of Stalin and his world. It has the quality of myth: a poor cobbler's son, a seminarian from an oppressed outer province of the Russian empire, reinvents himself as a top leader in a band of revolutionary zealots. When the band seizes control of the country in the aftermath of total world war, the former seminarian ruthlessly dominates the new regime until he stands as absolute ruler of a vast and terrible state apparatus, with dominion over Eurasia. While still building his power base within the Bolshevik dictatorship, he embarks upon the greatest gamble of his political life and the largest program of social reengineering ever attempted: the collectivization of all agriculture and industry across one sixth of the earth. Millions will die, and many more millions will suffer, but the man will push through to the end against all resistance and doubts. Where did such power come from? In Stalin, Stephen Kotkin offers a^ biography that, at long last, is equal to this shrewd, sociopathic, charismatic dictator in all his dimensions. The character of Stalin emerges as both astute and blinkered, cynical and true believing, people oriented and vicious, canny enough to see through people but prone to nonsensical beliefs. We see a man inclined to despotism who could be utterly charming, a pragmatic ideologue, a leader who obsessed over slights yet was a precocious geostrategic thinker--unique among Bolsheviks--and yet who made egregious strategic blunders. Through it all, we see Stalin's unflinching persistence, his sheer force of will--perhaps the ultimate key to understanding his indelible mark on history. Stalin gives an intimate view of the Bolshevik regime's inner geography of power, bringing to the fore fresh materials from Soviet military intelligence and the secret police. Kotkin rejects the inherited wisdom about Stalin's psychological makeup, showing us instead how Stalin's near paranoia was fundame ntally political, and closely tracks the Bolshevik revolution's structural paranoia, the predicament of a Communist regime in an overwhelmingly capitalist world, surrounded and penetrated by enemies. At the same time, Kotkin demonstrates the impossibility of understanding Stalin's momentous decisions outside of the context of the tragic history of imperial Russia. The product of a decade of intrepid research, Stalin is a landmark achievement, a work that recasts the way we think about the Soviet Union, revolution, dictatorship, the twentieth century, and indeed the art of history itself"-- Provided by publisher.
Contents:
Volume 1. Paradoxes of power, 1878-1928 : Part I: Double-headed eagle
An imperial son
Lado's disciple
Tsarism's most dangerous enemy
Constitutional autocracy
Part II: DurnovoĢ's revolutionary war
Stupidity or treason?
Kalmyk savior
1918: Dada and Lenin
Class war and a party state
Voyages of discovery
Part III: Collision
Dictator
"Remove Stalin"
Faithful pupil
Triumphant debacle
A trip to Siberia
Coda: If Stalin had died
Volume II. Waiting for Hitler, 1929-1941 : Part I. Equal to the myth
Triumph of the will
Apocalypse
Victory
Terrorism
A great power
Part II. Terror as statecraft
On a bluff
Enemies hunting enemies
"What went on in No. 1's brain?"
Missing piece
Part III. Three-card monte
Hammer
Pact
Smashed pig
Greed
Fear
Coda. Little Corner, Saturday, June 21, 1941.
[Volume 2]. Waiting for Hitler, 1929-1941 : Part I: Equal to the myth
Triumph of the will
Apocalypse
Victory
Terrorism
A great power
Part II: Terror as statecraft
On a bluff
Enemies hunting enemies
"What went on in no. 1's brain?"
Missing piece
Part III: Three-card monte
Hammer
Pact
Smashed pig
Greed
Fear
Coda. Little Corner, Saturday, June 21, 1941.
Volume I. Paradoxes of power, 1878-1928
[Volume II]. Waiting for Hitler, 1929-1941.
Notes:
Includes bibliographical references and index.
Local notes:
Acquired for the Penn Libraries with assistance from the Classes of 1883 and 1884 Fund.
Contributor:
Classes of 1883 and 1884 Fund.
ISBN:
9781594203794
1594203792
9781594203800
1594203806
OCLC:
893721553
Publisher Number:
40024210881