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Emergence of Josef Stalin. By Mr. Baker. Upbringing. Stalin was born the son of a poor shoe repairer and a washer-woman He learned Russian while attending a church school and attended Tiflis Theological Seminary to become a priest It was there when he first read Karl Marx

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Upbringing

  • Stalin was born the son of a poor shoe repairer and a washer-woman

  • He learned Russian while attending a church school and attended Tiflis Theological Seminary to become a priest

  • It was there when he first read Karl Marx

  • He was expelled for revolutionary activity


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Stalin Rises In Leadership

  • Between 1901 and 1913, he was arrested, imprisoned, and exiled 7 times!

  • His revolutionary activity caught the attention of Lenin, who named him to the board of Pravda, the party newspaper

  • Within two weeks he was given a seat on the Executive Committee of the Soviet, but was exiled to Siberia until 1917


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Stalin Rises In Leadership

  • When he learned that the Tsar abdicated, Stalin returned in March 1917

  • He briefly led the Bolsheviks in July 1917, when Lenin’s failed uprising caused him to go into hiding

  • Stalin played little part in the October Revolution that placed the Bolsheviks in power


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Stalin Rises In Leadership

  • During the civil war, Stalin was sent to Tsaritsyn (the future Stalingrad) as Director General of food supplies

  • Stalin also reorganized branches of the Cheka and suppressed many plots by simply arresting the accused and having them executed


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Stalin Rises In Leadership

  • In 1922, he came General Secretary of the Central Committee. He was also member of the Politburo and of many other committees

  • The same year, Lenin suffered a series of strokes which left him nearly incapacitated


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Lenin’s Potential Successors

  • Leon Trotsky

    • Trotsky was an intellectual and formerly a member of the Mensheviks (he recently had joined the Bolsheviks)

    • He had led the Red Army and was probably the most able successor, but he was very arrogant and did not have political allies

    • He was prepared to criticize the party for the growth of bureaucraticatization


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Lenin’s Potential Successors

  • Kamenev and Zinoviev

    • These candidates lost credibility by allying themselves with Trotsky


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Lenin’s Potential Successors

  • Bukharin

    • Was the editor of Pravda and Secretary of the Comintern

    • He supported Lenin’s NEP

    • He was not a viable candidate to succeed Lenin because his belief system was not sufficiently Marxist


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Lenin’s Potential Successors

  • Josef Stalin

    • Was underestimated and was careful never to criticize the party

    • As General Secretary of the Cabinet, Stalin controlled promotions and ranks in the Soviet Union. He filled the party with those who were personally loyal to him

    • He used the image of Lenin and the “Cult of Lenin” to present himself as the rightful heir. Stalin presented himself as the only true Leninist

    • The Cheka was used to find information which could be used to discredit his opponents


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Lenin’s Death

  • Lenin learned of Stalin’s actions and began preparing letters and speeches in order “to crush Stalin politically”

  • However, on March 7, 1923, he suffered his last stroke and lost the power of speech

  • He died on January 21, 1924


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Stalin Rises to Power

  • Stalin did not allow Trotsky to attend his funeral, which discredited Trotsky

  • Stalin discredited Lenin’s warnings to others of himself because Lenin was “a sick man surrounded by womenfolk” at the time of his death

  • Stalin ruthlessly discredited or shot his comrades


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Rapid Industrialization

  • Stalin wanted rapid industrialization to:

    • Free Russia from dependence on capitalist states for goods

    • Put all national resources under government control, including workers

    • Make Russia economically strong so that she would be able to produce more powerful weapons

    • Prove that the socialist system was more successful than capitalism


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Rapid Industrialization

  • Was rapid in the cities due to coercion and strict enforcement of worker discipline

  • Stalin encouraged enthusiasm and that people were part of something new and good

  • Educational programs would replace the bourgeoisie intellectuals with a new Soviet educated class


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Five Year Plans

  • Were plans to industrialize Russia with emphasis on heavy industries such as coal, iron, oil, steel, and electricity

  • Capitalist models were used for nearly every project

  • Targets were set which industries had to meet

  • Exaggerated figures were often submitted to demonstrate that a particular factory had exceeded expectations


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Gosplan

  • This was a group responsible for administering the Five Year Plans

  • They decided:

    • The amount of every article the country should produce

    • How much of the national effort should go into the formation of capital and how much for consumption

    • The wages all classes of workers should receive

    • The price of all goods exchanged


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First Five Year Plan (1928-1932)

  • Aimed to create an industrial base for further development through the rapid expansion of coal and steel production, electrical power, and transport

  • It called for a 20% increase per year, but it was not realistic since peasants had little skill and central planners were inexperienced

  • It met with some success as a result of enthusiastic workers puffed up by propaganda


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Second Five Year Plan (1933-1937)

  • The aim was diversification

  • The focus shifted to communication systems such as railways and new industries such as the chemical industry

  • The skilled workforce meant excellent growth in certain areas such as engineering and metal working

  • The rise to power of Hitler demanded that more and more resources be allocated to weapon production


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Third Five Year Plan (1938-1941)

  • The aim was weapons production

  • Its goal for growth was 12%

  • It was not successful because:

    • There were labor shortages due to the purges and famines caused by collectivization

    • Stalin’s purges led to disorganization in the party


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Assessment of the Five Year Plans

  • Russia was transformed into a major industrial power second only to the U.S.

  • The Five Year Plans allowed the USSR to resist the German invasion

  • Living standards declined at first, then improved slowly

  • Russians suffered a lack of consumer goods and daily necessities

  • Communist principles were compromised – good workers were rewarded with higher pay and competition between factories was encouraged


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Collectivization of Agriculture

  • Industrial development could not occur without sufficient food production

  • Collectivization was pursued as a means of giving the government the food supply needed to support industrial areas


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Collectivization of Agriculture

  • Peasants were forced to work on collective farms

  • All their belongings were confiscated and those peasants who resisted were killed or faced starvation

  • The main goal of the revolution from the peasants’ point of view was land ownership

  • The kulaks resisted strongly by smashing farm tools, burning farm buildings, slaughtering livestock, and setting crops on fire


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Collectivization of Agriculture

  • In 1932, a crop failure came which resulted in a famine that killed 5 million

  • By 1939, 95% of Russian farms had been collectivized, but some concessions were made to peasants:

    • Were allowed too keep small plots for their own use

    • Were able to keep their own cattle

    • Were able to sell their extra crops on the open market for profit


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Collectivization of Agriculture

  • Results:

    • The workers were guaranteed a supply of cheap food

    • The produce of collectives was sold in overseas markets for big profit – the money could be used in industries

    • The government gained greater control over the production and allocation of food, which helped during German’s invasion

    • Kulaks were virtually eliminated

    • Had an enormous human cost