Myth, Memory, Trauma: Rethinking the Stalinist Past in the by Polly Jones

By Polly Jones

Drawing on newly on hand fabrics from the Soviet information, Polly Jones deals an cutting edge, accomplished account of de-Stalinization within the Soviet Union throughout the Khrushchev and early Brezhnev eras. Jones lines the specialists’ initiation and administration of the de-Stalinization method and explores quite a lot of well known reactions to the hot narratives of Stalinism in social gathering statements and in Soviet literature and historiography.
Engaging with the dynamic box of reminiscence stories, this booklet represents the 1st sustained comparability of this approach with different international locations’ makes an attempt to reconsider their very own tough pasts, and with later Soviet and post-Soviet techniques to Stalinism.

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141 At another factory party meeting, in the city of Gor’kii, one member of the party organization, a certain Godiaev, complained about the lack of communication “from below” with “those on high” during the Stalin era. 142 As with the socio-economic analysis of the Stalinist “new class,” these broad claims about the division between “us” and “them” sometimes developed into a more focused political analysis. 144 Others reached a similar conclusion, by drawing attention to the political institutions damaged and even destroyed over the last three decades.

Why don’t people ask how they were guilty of the fact that Soviet people were in prison . . ”62 These calls for lustration remind us that terror was central to the Secret Speech itself, not only as a source of historical enquiry and a 28 t h e s e c r e t s p e ech subject of testimony, but also as a focus for moral judgment. 65 D E N O U N C I N G S TA L I N While many listeners thus blamed local agents of terror, they did not now exonerate Stalin, as had often happened during Stalin’s lifetime.

139 Ironically, this warning about the ubiquity of the mentality of the cult of personality was not authorized for mass distribution, after the obkom secretary criticized it as too sweeping. Such reflections on Stalinist psychology and collective behavior also sometimes generated radical analysis of the nature of Stalinism as a political system. 140 The speaker at Leningrad State University, a certain Gaevskii, extended the metaphor by claiming that only radical reform could provide enough “cement” to fill in this gap, and thus to repair the damage to the political process.

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