Life under Stalin
Joseph Stalin was able to establish a strong dictatorship over the Soviet Union by being a good organizer and being able to make many people appeal to him and his ideas of a communist society. Although his ideas were misleading, he managed to gain believers and kill off any of those who disagreed with any of his sayings or teachings. Much of the credit goes to his army who helped commit many of these murders that went on. They managed to kill about 12.5 million and put many nonbelievers in harsh labor camps. The society’s everyday lifestyle was under strict order of Stalin.
Joseph Stalin was born in southern Russia, Georgia. In 1878 he trained to become a priest but that didn’t work out to well and he was exiled three times due to strikes and robbing banks. After the revolution he became the general secretary of the communist party and became in charge of policing the party for traitors. Going against the rules he soon placed his friends in the USSR and took over in 1928. In the same year he had Leon Trotsky imprisoned and later assas- sinated in 1940.
Many problems began to spark up in the USSR. In 1921 industrial output was only 1/5th the size that was in 1913. The Ukrainian famine was created by the government to crush and kill the nationalist (5million people died). They were also 50-100 years behind industrialized coun- tries, so Stalin came up with the 5 year plan. The 5 year plan was a plan to industrialize Russia. It increased steel, coal, and oil 3x’s and electricity 6x’s. the industrial output improved 25% by 1933. The government limited production of consumer goods which caused shortages in housing and clothing. Workers needed police permission to move and if they did not work they were imprisoned or killed.
In 1928 an agricultural revolution started under Stalin’s rule. In this process he seized 25 million farms and combined them into collective farms. Hundreds of families were living in one large farm. There was no privacy so the government could have easier control. 5-10 million were executed or died in gulags. Famine even sparked up because the lack of experienced farmers in 1932-1934. In 1938 90% or peasants were living in collective farms. As much as 12.5 million people were murdered as a part of collectivization.
Many of these mass murdering was able to be done by using the weapons of Totalitarianism. Police terror was extremely successful into scaring the people into liking Stalin. The Secret Police arrested and executed millions of traitors. The Great Purges eliminated anyone who threatened Stalin’s power. By using censorship and propaganda 8-13 million people were killed. Stalin didn’t want anyone to practice a certain religion only atheism and if they did they were killed. Many churches were banned for that reason and opium of the masses. Stalin believed that with no money or religion people needed to believe in something, Stalin.
Education was another big gimmick that Stalin tried to make seem like everyone was meeting their full needs. He wanted people to believe that at least 12% of peasants were literate. He made a plan to bring education to all socialist citizens and peasants, also make women literate as well. In reality schools were lacking central heating, running water and sewers. The teachers promoted students regardless if they were passing or failing. The children learned job training, ideological indoctrination, and social discipline. The schools were not taken seriously, they were only teaching what Stalin wanted them to teach.
Stalin had much control over everything that went on in the Soviet Union. He manipulated many into believing that what he was doing was going to benefit the both of them. He separated ethnic groups and made changes to how everyone spoke and suppressed native culture. He lied about the percentages of peasants were literate and how the schools were actually teaching their fundamentals. There was a downfall with collectivization and the government owned all the land the peasants worked on. Stalin was able to establish a strong dictatorship over the Soviet Union by being a good organizer and being able to make many people appeal to his ideas of a society.