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Soviet Fates and Lost Alternatives: From Stalinism to the New Cold War

Soviet Fates and Lost Alternatives From Stalinism to the New Cold War In this wide ranging and acclaimed book Stephen F Cohen challenges conventional wisdom about the course of Soviet and post Soviet history Reexamining leaders from Nikolai Bukharin Stalin s preeminen

  • Title: Soviet Fates and Lost Alternatives: From Stalinism to the New Cold War
  • Author: Stephen F. Cohen
  • ISBN: 9780231148962
  • Page: 302
  • Format: Hardcover
  • In this wide ranging and acclaimed book, Stephen F Cohen challenges conventional wisdom about the course of Soviet and post Soviet history Reexamining leaders from Nikolai Bukharin, Stalin s preeminent opponent, and Nikita Khrushchev to Mikhail Gorbachev and his rival Yegor Ligachev, Cohen shows that their defeated policies were viable alternatives and that their tragicIn this wide ranging and acclaimed book, Stephen F Cohen challenges conventional wisdom about the course of Soviet and post Soviet history Reexamining leaders from Nikolai Bukharin, Stalin s preeminent opponent, and Nikita Khrushchev to Mikhail Gorbachev and his rival Yegor Ligachev, Cohen shows that their defeated policies were viable alternatives and that their tragic personal fates shaped the Soviet Union and Russia today Cohen s ramifying arguments include that Stalinism was not the predetermined outcome of the Communist Revolution that the Soviet Union was reformable and its breakup avoidable and that the opportunity for a real post Cold War relationship with Russia was squandered in Washington, not in Moscow This is revisionist history at its best, compelling readers to rethink fateful events of the twentieth and early twenty first centuries and the possibilities ahead.In his new epilogue, Cohen expands his analysis of U.S policy toward post Soviet Russia, tracing its development in the Clinton and Obama administrations and pointing to its initiation of a new Cold War that, he implies, has led to a fateful confrontation over Ukraine.

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      Published :2018-09-06T00:47:30+00:00

    1 thought on “Soviet Fates and Lost Alternatives: From Stalinism to the New Cold War

    1. “In Washington DC, one feels the rarefied air of a Himalayan peak. Seen from the grandiose palaces of the administration, where the fate of the world is decided, foreign people look small, primitive and largely irrelevant. Here and there some real experts are tucked away, but nobody really consults them.”-Uri Avnery Avnery’s observation about American foreign policy and the attitudes behind it was made in the context of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. But it is an apt description of Amer [...]

    2. An important part of understanding and enjoying history is not only learning what did happen, but also what alternatives could have happened but didn’t. Soviet Fates and Lost Alternatives explores how things could have turned out differently in the Soviet Union and post-Soviet Russia from the rise of Stalin through 2011.With the end of major fighting in the Russian Civil War in 1921 and after learning from the disaster of the Russian famine and angry uprisings, Lenin adopted the New Economic P [...]

    3. sort of strange. he's a liberal democrat but doesn't make that obvious, and he treats what was for me the most interesting alternative, the deepening of soviet socialism and soviet democracy at the same time, as basically not an option. so the story of the alternatives mainly involve how one elite group or another tried to turn the soviet union into a liberal democracy slightly nicer than the united states and failed. he is much better on the breakup period and the duplicity of us and other nato [...]

    4. A call to arms about the modern relationship between the U.S. and Russia, though not a literal call of arms. Cohen lays out several ways in which the Soviet Union could have proceeded differently, showing that the U.S.S.R.'s collapse was neither inevitable, nor brought about by American power. Yeltsin was never very democratic, Putin may be less antagonistic than we think, and if we keep mucking around in Russia's backyard, we may have some serious problems. While I'm not entirely sure I trust e [...]

    5. The go-to book for Soviet and post-Soviet history. Cuts through the hyperbole and tired, ideology-driven assumptions like a sharpened sickle. If you only read the newspaper or mainstream historians, everything you think about the Soviet Union and the Russia of today may be wrong

    6. I often read Stephen F Cohen's Russia columns in the Nation magazine. And while I don't agree with every point he makes, I do think that his expertise in the Soviet union and Post-Soviet Russia is far greater than that of many of the so-called Russia experts who are clamoring about the country today. More importantly, he's long been one of the few Sovietologists without ideological preconceptions to grind. Coming out of the Cold War period, that's a particularly valuable asset. So you can imagin [...]

    7. Cohen is often hailed as one of the leading American experts on Soviet history, and his robust knowledge of the subject is definitely apparent in "Fates and Lost Alternatives." His examination of roads not taken and figures unappreciated initially comes off as a bit disjointed, but it culminates in a gut-wrenching analysis of how far US-Russian relations have depreciated in recent years. Cohen manages to go from Bukharin through Khrushchev, Brezhnev, Gorbachev, Yeltsin, and Putin without losing [...]

    8. For the Russophile, a worthwhile survey of some of the lost chances and paths not taken that characterize Soviet and post-Soviet history, from the Bukharin alternative to the contemporary Russo-American relationship. Fascinating and recommended.

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