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Kirtland Community College Library DK 268 .S8 S4237 2006 30534448 General Collection Available -

Record details

  • ISBN: 0674022580 ($20.00)
  • ISBN: 9780674022584 ($20.00)
  • Physical Description: xviii, 715 p., [24] p. of prints : ill., maps ; 24 ... Read More
  • Edition: 1st pbk. ed. / Harvard U. Press
  • Publisher: Cambridge, MA : Belknap Press of Harvard University Press, 2006, c2004.

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Includes bibliographical references (p. [661]-680) ... Read More
Subject: Stalin, Joseph, 1879-1953.
Heads of state > Soviet Union > Biography.
Soviet Union > History > 1925-1953.

Syndetic Solutions - Summary for ISBN Number 0674022580
Stalin : A Biography
Stalin : A Biography
by Service, Robert
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Stalin : A Biography

Overthrowing the conventional image of Stalin as an uneducated political administrator inexplicably transformed into a pathological killer, Robert Service reveals a more complex and fascinating story behind this notorious twentieth-century figure. Drawing on unexplored archives and personal testimonies gathered from across Russia and Georgia, this is the first full-scale biography of the Soviet dictator in twenty years. Service describes in unprecedented detail the first half of Stalin's life--his childhood in Georgia as the son of a violent, drunkard father and a devoted mother; his education and religious training; and his political activity as a young revolutionary. No mere messenger for Lenin, Stalin was a prominent activist long before the Russian Revolution. Equally compelling is the depiction of Stalin as Soviet leader. Service recasts the image of Stalin as unimpeded despot; his control was not limitless. And his conviction that enemies surrounded him was not entirely unfounded. Stalin was not just a vengeful dictator but also a man fascinated by ideas and a voracious reader of Marxist doctrine and Russian and Georgian literature as well as an internationalist committed to seeing Russia assume a powerful role on the world stage. In examining the multidimensional legacy of Stalin, Service helps explain why later would-be reformers--such as Khrushchev and Gorbachev--found the Stalinist legacy surprisingly hard to dislodge. Rather than diminishing the horrors of Stalinism, this is an account all the more disturbing for presenting a believable human portrait. Service's lifetime engagement with Soviet Russia has resulted in the most comprehensive and compelling portrayal of Stalin to date.

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