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Book Cover
Author Smith, Kathleen E, author.

Title Moscow 1956 : the silenced spring / Kathleen E. Smith.

Publication Info. Cambridge, Massachusetts : Harvard University Press, 2017.


Location Call No. Status
 PAS Allendale Branch Non-Fiction    947.0852 SMI    Available
 PAS Central Library Non-Fiction, 1st Floor    947.0852 SMI    Available
Description 434 pages : illustrations, map ; 24 cm
text rdacontent
unmediated rdamedia
volume rdacarrier
Summary Joseph Stalin had been dead for three years when his successor, Nikita Khrushchev, stunned a closed gathering of Communist officials with a litany of his predecessor's abuses. Meant to clear the way for reform from above, Khrushchev's "Secret Speech" of February 25, 1956, shattered the myth of Stalin's infallibility. In a bid to rejuvenate the Party, Khrushchev had his report read out loud to members across the Soviet Union that spring. However, its message sparked popular demands for more information and greater freedom to debate. Moscow 1956: The Silenced Spring brings this first brief season of thaw into fresh focus. Drawing on newly declassified Russian archives, Kathleen Smith offers a month-by-month reconstruction of events as the official process of de-Stalinization unfolded and political and cultural experimentation flourished. Smith looks at writers, students, scientists, former gulag prisoners, and free-thinkers who took Khrushchev's promise of liberalization seriously, testing the limits of a more open Soviet system. But when anti-Stalin sentiment morphed into calls for democratic reform and eventually erupted in dissent within the Soviet bloc--notably in the Hungarian uprising--the Party balked and attacked critics. Yet Khrushchev had irreversibly opened his compatriots' eyes to the flaws of monopolistic rule. Citizens took the Secret Speech as inspiration and permission to opine on how to restore justice and build a better society, and the new crackdown only reinforced their discontent. The events of 1956 set in motion a cycle of reform and retrenchment that would recur until the Soviet Union's collapse in 1991.-- Provided by publisher
Bibliography Includes bibliographical references (pages 349-420) and index.
Contents January: after the ice -- February: a sudden thaw -- March: a flood of questions -- April: early spring -- May: fresh air -- June: first flush of youth -- July: intellectual heat -- August: by the sweat of their brows -- September: ocean breezes -- October: storm clouds -- November: winds from the east -- December: the big chill.
Subject Khrushchev, Nikita Sergeevich, 1894-1971.
Political rehabilitation -- Soviet Union.
Soviet Union -- Politics and government -- 1953-1985.
Soviet Union -- History -- 1953-1985.
Added Title Moscow one thousand nine hundred fifty-six
ISBN 9780674972001 (hardcover : alk. paper)
Standard No. 40027046343

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