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The Collapse Of Communism In The Soviet Union (Essay Sample)


Primary source evidence: you must use primary source evidence from the appropriate section of the ‘Online Primary Source Collection' guide that is available under Week 10 on Moodle (and in each weekly section). You may use sources from more than one online collection listed for the topic you have chosen. You only have 1500 words, so you need to limit your primary source evidence to a small and appropriate sample of available materials. For example, you could focus on several interviews or on one interview in depth, on one significant document or several related documents, on one image or film or several images or films.
Scholarly literature: You must use scholarly sources (scholarly books; peer-reviewed journal articles). While 10 sources is the minimum number of scholarly sources required, you should appreciate the spirit of this requirement as a guideline for your need to draw on an adequate number of sufficiently substantial, informative, varied, sources generated from multiple search approaches.



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Beginning from the Second World War, until the end of the Cold War, the Soviet Union had much influence over other superpowers. The founders of the Soviet Union strongly believed that the system would soon be copied by other nations. Communism in Russia was established as a means of ending capitalism, however, Perestroika and Gorbachev led to the end of Communism in the Soviet Union. Communism became common during the early twentieth century whereby, close to a third of the world’s population was ruled by communists (Payne 2011, p. 65).

During the formation of the Soviet Union in 1922, it initially comprised of four states, namely; the Belorussian SSR, the Ukrainian Soviet Socialist Republic, the Transcaucasian SFSR and the RSFSR (Salzmann 2013, p. 26). However, the unrealistic nature of the communist belief as practiced in the Soviet Union made it impossible for the leadership style to prosper.

According to Marxists beliefs, communism involves equality in the community (Marx and Engles 2018, p. 15). However, the idea of equality was impractical, especially in the Soviet community which had individuals from varying social classes. Furthermore, Soviet society focused more on repression, the government denied its citizens the freedom to practice religion, express themselves and eve their basic human rights (Juviler 2010, p. 88). However, citizens in the Soviet Society began revolting against the oppressions and this made way for the collapse of communism.

During this period, the people of Russia were eager to be set free from oppression and political tyranny. Russia had been struggling to keep up with the West since the Bolshevick regime in 1917 (Rabinowitch 2008, p. 101). The country was drowned in poverty and backwardness. A majority of its people were unskilled, and the few skilled workers were unable to keep up with the demand in industries. As a result, Russia’s income was extremely low. When the country set up a new economic policy in 1921, the citizens were free to conduct trade in the open market and engage with private merchants. This led to the recovery of a majority of Russia’s industries. Nonetheless, since the country still lacked enough skilled labour, the Bolshevick party was forced to outsource skilled laborers. The experts grew into a large body of individuals who then came to hold top positions in government and established a bureaucratic system of governance. Stalin became the central figure in this system of governance and favored those who were in support of bureaucratizing the communist party. Stalin’s communist methods led to more oppression as he confiscated assets such as factories and farms and reorganized the economy. Stalin exercised god-like influence by presenting himself as a paternal figure who took care of his people. However, the millions of Russians who suffered from hunger and starvation had little desire for Stalin’s tales.
Stalin’s death in 1953 can be considered as the first sign of the fall of communism (Service 2004, p. 15). His death was followed by a sudden struggle for power in the Soviet Union. Although Khrushchev succeeded in gaining control over the Soviet Union. Rebel groups had begun revolting in several states, including Czechoslovakia and Bulgaria. Similarly, rebellions against communism were experienced in Germany, Hungary, and Poland, however, the Soviet forces took effective measures to stop the rebels.

The increased insecurities in the Soviet-led to the signing of the Helsinki Agreement. The agreement led to collaborations between the United States and the Soviet Union. The agreement led to the Soviet’s abandonm...

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