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Stalin (Englisch) Taschenbuch – 16. April 2010

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  • Taschenbuch: 715 Seiten
  • Verlag: Pan (16. April 2010)
  • Sprache: Englisch
  • ISBN-10: 0330518372
  • ISBN-13: 978-0330518376
  • Größe und/oder Gewicht: 13 x 4,8 x 19,7 cm
  • Durchschnittliche Kundenbewertung: 5.0 von 5 Sternen  Alle Rezensionen anzeigen (1 Kundenrezension)
  • Amazon Bestseller-Rang: Nr. 56.327 in Fremdsprachige Bücher (Siehe Top 100 in Fremdsprachige Bücher)

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For an understanding of Stalin the man, the leader, the Georgian, the Russian nationalist, the revolutionary, the party politician, the mass murderer and the international statesman, and his place in modern Russian history--Robert Service's book is unsurpassed.--Harold Shukman, author of "Stalin's Generals" -- Dieser Text bezieht sich auf eine vergriffene oder nicht verfügbare Ausgabe dieses Titels.


The first full-scale biography of Stalin in twenty years reveals the complex and fascinating story of the Soviet dictator, from his dysfunctional childhood in Soviet Georgia, through his education and early political activism, to his tyrannical control over the Soviet Union and the legacy of his reign. -- Dieser Text bezieht sich auf eine vergriffene oder nicht verfügbare Ausgabe dieses Titels.

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1 von 1 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich Von E. Ralph am 19. Februar 2012
Format: Kindle Edition
Seldomly was the rule of a nation tied so closely to the personality of its leader. To understand the Soviet Union between the 1920s and 1950s, one must understand Stalin. Robert Service makes a great effort to coversthe important stations of Stalins life as well as his politics. The only down-side is that Mr. Service goes out of his way to address assertions made by other researchers and to qualify these. While he makes some good cases, he sometimes goes to far justifying Stalins actions.
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75 von 85 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
Ground Breaking 14. März 2005
Von Tom Munro - Veröffentlicht auf
Format: Gebundene Ausgabe
Reading this biography one becomes aware how much previous biographies of Stalin were affected by Trotsky's work and perspective. A good deal of scholarship about the Soviet Union depended on documents that were carried out by him and his written works were influential. Some of the more influential writers of Soviet history were in fact disciples of Trotsky such as Isaac Deutscher.

Broadly Trotsky hoped to gain power in the Soviet Union following Lenin's death. He was however outmanoeuvred by Stalin. Trotsky was contemptuous of Stalin's ability and he thought he was a nonentity. This is reflective in his writing and accounts of Stalin's career and rise. As a result he portrayed Stalin as a nothing who had arisen not through his own ability but through a mysterious numbers game in the party which preferred hacks to people of real talent.

Stalin after in his road to power was happy to portray himself in a similar way to the Trotsky caricature of him. That is an ordinary practical man who could empathise with the problems of workers and peasants and have real solutions to problems rather than overblown rhetoric.

This book suggests a very different picture of Stalin's rise. In reality he was only General Secretary of the party for a short time before the power struggle to oust Trotsky. He had little time to stack the party and the reason he won was because he was a better political operator. In fact Stalin had always been an important figure in the Bolshevik movement holding important positions such as being the editor of the party newspaper. Although a poor public speaker he was a person of considerable intelligence and he was a skilled writer. Broadly Trosky was a person who was somewhat egocentric and he had little ability to read people and depended on his charisma and ability as a speaker. By the 1920's a bit more was required to gain power in the Soviet Union.

The main power of the book is to show that Stalin was in fact an intellectual figure. It deals in less detail with the historical background of Stalin's rule skating over the oppression of the peasants and the development of industry. In fact the chapter on the second world war makes at least one mistake suggesting that the battle of Karhov was the first Soviet offensive of the war obviously forgetting the attacks on the German forces by Zhukov in late 1941.

Never the less the power and importance of the book is to show how previous biographies were written and influenced by ideas around Stalin's rise which when put to the test are shown to be wrong. In looking at Stalin's personality it is also clear that he was not a person who suffered from what would be described as a mental illness. His actions were to purposeful and systematic for that. Despite this the book is perhaps better at showing what could be described as the evil of Stalin's rule. Not only the effects on those who were killed by his regime but the brutal and irrational nature of the regime he created.
69 von 80 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
Disappointing 3. August 2005
Von David A. Caplan - Veröffentlicht auf
Format: Gebundene Ausgabe Verifizierter Kauf
This book is an adequate introduction to Stalin's life, but it's unlikely to add much to the knowledge of anyone who's read multiple biographies. Service's best sections are the early ones where he describes Stalin's intellectual development and corrects what he terms as misconceptions about how Stalin acquired power in the early days of the Bolsheviks' rule. Service is much weaker in describing and analyzing Stalin's long tenure as the unquestioned leader of the Soviet Union. Major episodes like the elimination of Bukharin and Kirov's murder are not given the treatment they deserve. Service wastes space with onerous repetition. As one example, we learn twice on facing pages (556 and 557) that Mao's Army crossed the Yalu into Korea on October 19, 1950. At other times anecdotes are repeated in different chapters, and we encounter the same generalizations about Stalin's rule in many places. Nor is the book particularly well-written. In addition to many unfelicitous turns of phrase, there are gratuitous asides such as Service's parenthetical agreement with Stalin in disliking Coca-Cola. However, I would like to defend the author of the charge made by some previous reviewers of "humanizing" Stalin, as if Service doesn't recognize that Stalin was a monstrous tyrant. Building a case for the dictator as more of a thinker than commonly thought doesn't have any moral implications, and Service doesn't gloss over Stalin's crimes.
25 von 28 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
A superb account 31. Dezember 2005
Von Mr. S. Ghosh - Veröffentlicht auf
Format: Gebundene Ausgabe
Without much debate, one of the best works on Stalin. What is worthwhile mentioning here is: Unlike many American and European historians, biographers and political analysts who have had written, edited or commented on Stalin and his rise to power in the CC of the USSR quite acrimoniously and dubiously over the years, this book is quite different. Instead, Service does an EXCELLENT job of:

1. Taking into accounts as they were and not mentioning what he thinks on them. Rather criticising Stalin and his every political move, we get a clear account of his real motives, his way of thinking, pressures he handled, the question of being either in power or out of it.

2. His fights with Trotsky, later with Kamenev and Zinoviev and then finally with Bukharin are mentioned and exemplified in great finesse. What one ought to note is that contrary to what most historians (over the decades) have seen Stalin as: short-tempered and haughty, he was a man of great discipline, far-sighted and highly motivated political analyst.

His childhood, rise to power, dekulakisation, rapid industrialisation and collectivisation of farms and other facets of Soviet regime are very nicely introduced, mentioned and illustrated. Moreover what makes the reading even better is: opposite views from Lenin, Trotsky, Kamenev, Zinoviev, Bukharin and others are mentioned and contrasted. 5 stars overall!

Subhasish Ghosh

26th Dec 2005

St. Cross College,

University of Oxford
24 von 28 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
We return again to the subject of Stalin 17. Mai 2005
Von a reader - Veröffentlicht auf
Format: Gebundene Ausgabe
Gangster! Evil dictator! Georgian Al Capone! Robert Service uses all of these terms to describe Joseph Vissarionovich Dzhughashvili, known as Stalin, in this new biography. That he also uses terms such as intellectual, paterfamilias, singer of songs and lover of wine, to describe the `man of steel' disgusts and alienates some readers. Apparently, we must distance ourselves from such a man, make him somehow inhuman, in order to fit him into our modern worldview. More interesting, and more useful, is a biography that seeks to understand the human factors, for Stalin was not some alien dropped from outer space, but a man.

This is the work of a professional historian who is deeply immersed in both the primary sources (many newly available) and the historiography of Stalin. Service seeks to undertake a multidimensional approach, looking at political, economic, personal, international and many other factors of both Stalin and the world in which he lived. Among the more interesting points Service brings out, is the importance of Stalin in the pre-revolutionary period, including his importance and high place (although less visible than some of the others) in the party structure, debunking the myth that Stalin came out of nowhere, suddenly and mysteriously knocking the Bolshevik train off track. Stalin was Lenin's protégé and student, and although he differed on several key points, there was continuity between the two. In a sense this is the sequel to the author's works on Lenin.

If there is one thing I wish could be added to a generally excellent work, it would be while Service sufficiently discredits both Leninism and Stalinism I would have preferred, since he was on the subject, a discussion of the failure not only Bolshevism but of Marxism in general. Admittedly it is slightly beyond the scope, but it seems to leave open the question, could a Marxist state under some more benign leadership have worked? It is my belief that the historian of the twentieth century has already before him evidence to answer this question, and anyway, (with sincere apologies) let us hope no one will ever undertake such an experiment. That being said, in all a very good biography suitable for all readers.
13 von 14 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
Incomplete view 9. Januar 2008
Von Philip W. Logan - Veröffentlicht auf
Format: Taschenbuch Verifizierter Kauf
Robert Service's Stalin biography provides a detailed glimpse into the life of one of history's great tyrants. In the course Service dispels a number of myths especially whether Stalin murdered his second wife. Another reviewer pointed out the assassination of Kirov and Stalin's destruction of Bukharin, Kamenev and Zinoviev deserves greater attention. I agree. These prominent opponents of Stalin are dispatched by Service with only a few sentences. Service additionally makes broad-brush statements about popular views, resistance or opposition to Stalin which he does not support with facts or anecdotes.
Ultimately, where the book let me down is when the 1930's end and enters the World War 2 and post-world war 2 eras. It seems the author was bored by the subject or just wanted to the book quickly. Service additionally assigns the lion's share of responsibility for the Cold War to Truman and his desire for world-wide United States hegemony.
These last chapters of the book I feel made Service's "Stalin-A biography" seem incomplete.
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