Beyond Stalinism

Beyond Stalinism : Communist Political Evolution

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First Published in 1992. Routledge is an imprint of Taylor & Francis, an informa company.
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Product details

  • Paperback | 186 pages
  • Taylor & Francis Ltd
  • London, United Kingdom
  • English
  • 1138987816
  • 9781138987814

Back cover copy

'Evolution' has taken place both within and from communism. Communist-ruled countries adapted to changing circumstances inside their boundaries and in the outside world, in order to retain their viability and to establish a 'communist society'. More recently, former communist-ruled countries have embarked on a new stage of their political evolution through a process of democratization. Both of these aspects of communist political evolution are examined in this volume of essays by leading British and Scandinavian students of communism and communist systems, who elaborate the concept and apply it to specific cases. Taking as its starting-point the Stalinist form of communist rule established in the Soviet Union and imposed or adopted elsewhere, this book explores the concept of political evolution with specific reference to communist countries. Seeing evolution as an extended metaphor, the concept is examined in relation to the communist form of rule that has been central to the political experience of the twentieth century. Country studies look at political evolution in the Soviet Union, Poland, and China, while thematic studies focus on a variety of elements of evolution: the state, which has undergone a theoretical metamorphosis in the thinking and practice of communists; the economy, the effective management of which has, perhaps more than any other single influence, induced attempts to direct the course of political adaptation; interests and resource-mobilization, which impinged ever more pressingly on the communism form of rule in response to the economic and social transformations wrought by communist power; and political parties, the key feature of post-communist politicalevolution and the basis of modern democracy. A concluding essay examines the experience of communism as a form of rule and assesses the validity of the concept of evolution in the context of communist studies. While of particular interest to students and scholars who concern themselves with the communist and former communist world, the book will also be of interest to students of political change and development in other contexts.
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