Skip to Main Content
It looks like you're using Internet Explorer 11 or older. This website works best with modern browsers such as the latest versions of Chrome, Firefox, Safari, and Edge. If you continue with this browser, you may see unexpected results.
Senior School Database Search
We have graded each source in this Research Guide according to the following levels.
Brief, easy to read information which may be basic and use informal language. Newspaper articles are generally this level.
Generally includes subject-specific language, provides additional reading and may provide additional background information.
Typically, these will be longer in length, detailed and contain technical information.
Sample Library Books Available
"Joseph Stalin was born Joseph Vissarionovich Dzhugashvili. Most Soviet sources on Stalin list his birth date as December 21, 1879; however, Stalin lied about his age. He was actually born on December 18, 1878. He was the only son of a poor cobbler, Vissarion Dzhugashvili. Joseph’s mother, Yekaterina, worked as a domestic servant in order to enable young Joseph to attend the Tiflis Orthodox Theological Seminary. Though receiving high marks, he had by 1898 entered the growing revolutionary movement in the Russian Empire and was expelled from the seminary forthwith ... "
The Soviet Union : A Very Short Introduction
"Almost twenty years after the Soviet Unions'end, what are we to make of its existence? Was it a heroic experiment, an unmitigated disaster, or a viable if flawed response to the modern world? Taking a fresh approach to the study of the Soviet Union, this Very Short Introduction blends political history with an investigation into the society and culture at the time ... "
Stalin : A New Biography of a Dictator
"Josef Stalin exercised supreme power in the Soviet Union from 1929 until his death in 1953. During that quarter-century, by Oleg Khlevniuk's estimate, he caused the imprisonment and execution of no fewer than a million Soviet citizens per year. Millions more were victims of famine directly resulting from Stalin's policies. What drove him toward such ruthlessness? ... "
Stalin at War, 1918-1953: Patterns of Violence and Foreign Threat
"Joseph Stalin, dictator of the Soviet Union from the 1920s to his death in 1953, often invoked the specter of war. For some reason, however, we have never taken those invocations seriously. We have always understood them as a manipulative device, either to gain political advantage over his opponents, to mobilize the population, to deflect blame for ill-advised and extreme policies, or in some other way to consolidate the dictator's power. This article argues that the dictator's expectations of war were not just discursive or rhetorical, as most histories argue. In fact, Stalin's perceptions of external threat were inextricably intertwined with internal policies of mass repression, as well as campaigns of industrial mobilization ... "
The Process of Collectivisation Violence
" ... When one steps back to consider the violence that was part and parcel of the creation of Soviet power, one sees a pattern of expanding and contracting circles whereby Moscow, and the Bolshevik regime, attempted to consolidate power. Thus, the civil war that followed the revolutions of 1917 was one attempt, a broad circle to establish the boundaries of power that stretched the borders of the empire and pushed the peasant majority to the brink ... "
The Question of Social Support for Collectivization.
"There was support for the Soviet project in the Russian village (as well as opposition to it) in the 1920s. But then came collectivization, and all internal support apparently vanished ... "
On the Human Costs of Collectivization in the Soviet Union
" ACCELERATED INDUSTRIALIZATION, increased appropriation of grain from the peasants, forced collectivization, liquidation of the kulaks, production declines, and hunger are the main links in a chain of events that led to the famine of 1932- 33 in the Soviet Union and to millions of deaths ..."
Collectivisation and Industrialisation
Click through a range of articles supplied by the Library of Congress from the Russian Archives. "In November 1927, Joseph Stalin launched his “revolution from above” by setting two extraordinary goals for Soviet domestic policy: rapid industrialization and collectivization of agriculture. His aims were to erase all traces of the capitalism that had entered under the New Economic Policy and to transform the Soviet Union as quickly as possible, without regard to cost, into an industrialized and completely socialist state ..."
"Chronic shortfalls in state procurements of grain and a rising tide of working-class protests over shortages combined to persuade Stalin and his supporters within the party leadership to abandon the market as the main mechanism by which goods from the countryside were obtained ... "