Stalin

2 books in series
4.5 out of 5 stars 423 ratings

Stalin, Volume I Publisher's Summary

A magnificent new biography that revolutionizes our understanding of Stalin and his world. It has the quality of myth: A poor cobbler's son, a seminarian from an oppressed outer province of the Russian Empire, reinvents himself as a revolutionary and finds a leadership role within a small group of marginal zealots. When the old world is unexpectedly brought down in a total war, the band seizes control of the country, and the new regime it founds as the vanguard of a new world order is ruthlessly dominated from within by the former seminarian until he stands as the absolute ruler of a vast and terrible state apparatus, with dominion over Eurasia. We think we know the story well. Remarkably, Stephen Kotkin's epic new biography shows us how much we still have to learn.

Volume One of Stalin begins and ends in January 1928 as Stalin boards a train bound for Siberia, about to embark upon the greatest gamble of his political life. He is now the ruler of the largest country in the world, but a poor and backward one, far behind the great capitalist countries in industrial and military power, encircled on all sides. In Siberia, Stalin conceives of the largest program of social reengineering ever attempted: the root-and-branch uprooting and collectivization of agriculture and industry across the entire Soviet Union. To stand up to the capitalists he will force into being an industrialized, militarized, collectivized great power is an act of will. Millions will die, and many more will suffer, but Stalin will push through to the end against all resistance and doubts. Where did such power come from? The product of a decade of scrupulous and intrepid research, Stalin contains a host of astonishing revelations. Kotkin gives an intimate first-ever view of the Bolshevik regime’s inner geography, bringing to the fore materials from Soviet military intelligence and the secret police.

©2014 Stephen Kotkin (P)2014 Recorded Books
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  • Book 1

    • Stalin, Volume I

    • Paradoxes of Power, 1878-1928
    • By: Stephen Kotkin
    • Narrated by: Paul Hecht
    • Length: 38 hrs and 47 mins
    • Unabridged
    • Overall
      4.5 out of 5 stars 315
    • Performance
      4.5 out of 5 stars 277
    • Story
      4.5 out of 5 stars 277

    Volume One of Stalin begins and ends in January 1928 as Stalin boards a train bound for Siberia, about to embark upon the greatest gamble of his political life. He is now the ruler of the largest country in the world, but a poor and backward one, far behind the great capitalist countries in industrial and military power, encircled on all sides. In Siberia, Stalin conceives of the largest program of social reengineering ever attempted.

    • 4 out of 5 stars
    • Excellent Book But First Time Listener Beware

    • By IRP on 03-23-15

    Regular price: $38.49

  • Book 2

    • Stalin, Volume II

    • Waiting for Hitler, 1929-1941
    • By: Stephen Kotkin
    • Narrated by: Paul Hecht
    • Length: 49 hrs and 43 mins
    • Unabridged
    • Overall
      4.5 out of 5 stars 108
    • Performance
      5 out of 5 stars 97
    • Story
      5 out of 5 stars 97

    Pulitzer Prize finalist Stephen Kotkin continues his definitive biography of Stalin, from collectivization and the Great Terror through to the coming of the conflict with Hitler's Germany that is the signal event of modern world history.

    • 3 out of 5 stars
    • Would Be Riveting if Better Read

    • By Good Morning London on 03-04-18

    Regular price: $41.99