USSR

The West Siberian uprising, 1921-1922

Map - west Siberia

A short account of the West Siberian uprising against the Bolsheviks.

The German war economy and state socialism - Robert Kurz

In this excerpt from his book, The Collapse of Modernization (1991), Robert Kurz discusses the role played by the WWI German War Economy as a model for the catch-up modernization program implemented first by the Bolshevik regime and then completed by Stalin (defined by Preobrazhensky in 1926 as “Socialist Primitive Accumulation”), points out that this understanding of the transition to socialism was almost universally accepted at the time among all socialist and communist factions, including the most radical ones, due to a “false ontology of labor” and a “socio-technological” understanding of capital that are incompatible with Marx’s critique of the commodity form and abstract labor.

The IWW and the Profintern

The exchange between the USSR directed Red International of Labour Unions (a.k.a. the Profintern) and the IWW.

Strikes against Stalin in 1930s Russia - Jeffrey Rossman

A detailed account and analysis of the Teikovo cotton workers' strike of April 1932, examining class, gender identity politics in Stalin's Russia.

The Cold War as a System - Michael Cox

Many leftists saw the Cold War as a genuine clash between Soviet 'Socialism' and Western capitalism. Michael Cox, however, shows how Soviet Stalinism and the Cold War helped stabilise global capitalism for 40 years.

The Makhnovists and the Mennonites: war and peace in the Ukrainian Revolution

A Mennonite Selbstschutz unit photographed in the Ukraine, 1918

This is a story about massacres that occurred in Southern Ukraine between 26th October and 7th December, 1919. The victims, avowedly-pacifist German Mennonites, included several women and elderly people; in Eichenfeld, almost one third of the village population was killed, including a 65 year-old blind woman. All the massacres occurred in the vicinity of the Makhnovist army. And then, after six weeks, they stopped.

The Soviet Union versus socialism - Noam Chomsky

In this article, which was written close to the end of the cold war, Noam Chomsky argues against the association of socialism with Bolshevism.

The Russian revolution in retreat, 1920-24: Soviet workers and the new communist elite - Simon Pirani

Lenin with Stalin

This critically acclaimed book, published in 2008, focuses on the retreat from the revolution’s aims in 1920-24, after the end of the civil war – and specifically, on the turbulent relationship between the working class and the Communist Party in those years.

Several considerations – democratic centralist

Trotsky in exile in Alma-Ata with his family and his dog

Two articles from the Decist dissident faction within the Bolshevik party on the expulsion of Trotsky.

Did the Bolshevik seizure of power inaugurate a socialist revolution? A Marxian inquiry - Paresh Chattopadhyay

Chattopadhyay applies Marxian categories to the Russian Revolution of 1917 to examine its socialist content.