Sunday, 7 June 2009

How did Stalin use totalitarianism ?

The two ways in which Stalin used totalitarianism are- Five Year Plan & Collectivisation. After Lenin died in 1984, Stalin's goal was to turn Soviet Union into a powerful industrial state. Therefore, he made Five Year Plan, aiming to increase growth of industry.  Russian industry changed immensly-- new towns such as Magnitogorsk grew up and large projects such as the Dnieper hydroelectric dam were developed. This made the Soviet Union become a major industrial country. She got second place in production to USA and Germany. While going through this period, they recieved low wages and suffered from daily necessities. Human cost was very high-- millions of peasants died because of poor working conditions and hours of long work. Demands on workers meant that millions lived under harsh conditions, working for the good of Russia. Shops were empty, clothing and household items were in short supply. Lack of consumer goods is one example why standard of living became hard. The way Stalin treated people was unfair; he didn't care under what conditions the people were, he only cared about increasing industrial growth. Workers, instead of being rewarded, they were poorly paid.  

Collectivisation was also part of the Five Year Plan-- but it wasn't as successful as industrialisation. As it didn't fullfil it's goals under the plan, this caused food shortages. Up to 7 milion peasants died, the government still selled grain to foreign countries to earn foreign currency that can be used for investment in industry. Grain production increase later on. Collectivisation turned out to be successful since it improved agriculture in Russia. Collectivisation also ended private ownership of land, which was nationalised and peasants were to own a piece of ground. In this way, the state could have more control over them.  

These two examples of totalitarianism show how cruel Stalin was, and how he didn't care about his workers even though the industrial growth improved thanks to them. He could have given them better social benefits, especially to those who had a family they needed to feed, because under those conditions in which they were, they couldn't possibly survive. Millions of workers died because of the conditions in which they found themselves under Stalin's rule, which shows how Stalin used terrorism over people just to get total control over them, which in fact, he got in the end. 


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