Stalin's USSR 1928-53
Click on the photo above to access interactive BBC timeline of Stalin
Joseph Stalin (1878-1953) was the dictator of the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics (USSR) from 1929 to 1953. Under Stalin, the Soviet Union was transformed from a peasant society into an industrial and military superpower. However, he ruled by terror, and millions of his own citizens died during his brutal reign.
Born into poverty, Stalin became involved in revolutionary politics, as well as criminal activities, as a young man. After Bolshevik leader Vladimir Lenin (1870-1924) died, Stalin outmaneuvered his rivals for control of the party.
Once in power, he collectivized farming, accelerated the rate of industrialisation via his 5 Year Plans and had potential enemies executed in purges or sent to forced labor camps.
Stalin aligned with the United States and Britain in World War II (1939-1945) but afterward engaged in an increasingly tense relationship with the West known as the Cold War (1946-1991). After his death, the Soviets initiated a de-Stalinization process.
Rise to Power 1924-29
Stalin RTP essay work
Key terms for Stalin RTP
- see left
Strengths of Stalin
- see below in red
- see below in red box
Weaknesses of others and circumstances
- see below in blue
+ Quick Stalin RTP diagram
Consolidation of Power 1929-39....or is it?
Consolidation of Power
Stalin by 1929 had complete control of the party leadership - but now he had to extend that to the Party at large and ultimately the whole of the USSR....how was he to achieve this and which methods were most effective?
Stalin and the Economic transformation of the USSR
Who was Sergei Kirov? Why was his murder so important?
Stalin's Great Terror - interview with J Arch Getty (UCLA)
Summary Full interview
Stalinist social policy
- podcast (left)
- article (above)
- powerpoint (below)
Stalin's Russia - Society + Culture
Foreign Policy 1928-53
Pre-war efforts to secure alliance
pt I on the left
pt II on right
WWII or Great Patriotic War
Interview on the left with producer of alt US history TV
Short summary on right + BBC documentary underneath
Podcasts left and right explaining the start of the Cold War b/w USA/USSR
BBC documentary underneath about the Grand Alliance of WWII collapsed
Legacy of Stalin and Stalinism
Perspectives on Stalin and the USSR
Paper 1 style questions on Stalin's collectivisation
1a) What are the hoped for effects of Lenin's order in Source B? (3)
1b) What is the message of Source A? (2)
2) With reference to the origin, purpose and highlighted content, assess the values and limitations of
Source A to historians studying Stalin's policies in the countryside in 1930. (4)
3) Contrast and compare the views expressed in the highlighted sections of reports in Sources C + D. (6)
Source A - 1930 Bolshevik propaganda poster
Source B - Lenin's infamous 1918 order to hang kulaks....
Source C - 1932 Report from SW Siberia on effects of collectivisation
Source D - 1932 Report from W Siberia on effects of collectivisation
Source E - 1922 order from Lenin to deal with religious opposition in Petrograd
Series of podcasts examining russian history AII to Khruschev 185-1964
Stalin (Revolutionary; Despot; Generalissimo)
- 1990 series based on Soviet citizens accounts
Karl Marx & Marxism
Karl Marx - In Our Time - BBC Radio 4
Vladimir Lenin - In Our Time - BBC Radio 4
look at Stalin`s early years in Georgia & the childhood that helped make the man
Stephanie Shakhireva's article - Re-printed with permission.
Swaddled Nation: Modern Mother Russia and a Psychologival Reassessment of Stalin,
First appeared in the Summer 2007 issue of The Journal of Psychohistory
Dizzy with Success
Holomodor or Ukranian famine of 1932/33
Stalin, Industrialisation & 5YPs
Stalin - Inside the Terror BBC documentary
Stalin "Red Terror" - archival footage
shostakovich v stalin doc
Stalin's expulsion orders of 1944
stalins railway of death
Russia's War, Blood on the Snow
ep 9 Cult of Personality - High Stalinism & Cold War