During the perestroika period, people started doubting about the essence of the Soviet model on the whole
Joseph Stalin would turn 125 years this year, not the next year, as it is generally believed. Stalin's certificate of birth has been recently found in Gory. According to the document, Joseph Stalin was born on December 6th 1878, not on December 21st, 1879. Vadim Denisov, chairman of the philosophy department of the State Naval Academy in the city of Novorossiisk, says, it is not yet clear, why Stalin decided to make himself a little bit younger.
"Stalin was a political figure for more than 50 years. He was a persecuted revolutionary, one of the leaders of the party and the government, a dictator. However, the discussion about his role in history was still very actual even 50 years after his death. His actions in the Soviet era were condemned by the party that he chaired. On June 30th 1956, the Soviet press published the official decree of the Central Committee of the Communist Party "About Overcoming the Personality Cult and Its Consequences."
"Stalin was criticized harsher at the XXII Congress of the Communist Party in 1961. The same year, Stalin's body was taken out of the Mausoleum and buried on the Red Square. The perestroika period (1985-1991) became another stage of the historical criticism, when Mikhail Gorbachev, Alexander Yakovlev and Eduard Shevardnadze decided to aim the country at socialistic modernization - liberalization and democratization. A lot of books and articles about Stalin were published at the end of the 1980s, in the beginning of the 1990s, which laid the foundation for realizing Stalin's role in the country's contemporary history.
"A lot of researchers say, Stalin was the last monarch in Russia's history. His favorite figures of the national history were Ivan the Awesome and Peter the Great, Stalin was admiring them. Politically, Stalin was formed as a revolutionary. Until 1917, the most important thing for him was to criticize the government that was to be overthrown. He became a "sovereign" at the end of the 1920s. The perestroika criticism was a lot deeper in comparison with the 1950s and the 1960s. At first, Stalin was criticized for his personal qualities. During the perestroika period, people started doubting about the essence of the Soviet model on the whole, there were certain attempts made to explain the reason why Stalin's power had been formed.
"People of older generation do not pay much attention to Stalin's repressing actions - they become more and more virtual for them every year. If none of their relatives suffered from repression, they think of Stalin as of a large historical figure, the liberator of the world. It is true to a certain extent, but unfortunately, the reality has a lot of other sides. When the present is not ideal, people start idealizing the past, this is a typical feature of the human nature. In everyday life, one can hear elderly people saying "music used to be better, movies used to be more sincere" and so on. From the state point of view, Stalin was the first Soviet leader, who put an end to gangsterism in the regions - that was a very big accomplishment.
"Nowadays, it is difficult to say, what would have happened, if someone else had had the power. Trotsky, for example, played a very important role during a crucial moment of history. The October coup was his accomplishment, first and foremost. Trotsky was an extremely brutal person, but as a theorist, he was estimated higher than Stalin. One does not have any doubts: Stalin had no match in the offstage struggle. Party officials did not say anything against Stalin when he was ruling the country. People feared for their lives, for the lives of their relatives and children. In addition, an anti-Stalin statement was perceived as an anti-national statement, because a lot of breakthroughs were connected with his name.
"People must find the truth about their history. Stalin still remains an outstanding persona of our times. I was very impressed with Trotsky's work called "Stalin." He was one of the few people, who was struggling with the person, whom he was writing about. Trotsky wrote about Stalin's historical and propaganda activities: "I do not think one may find something that would slightly resemble the gigantic enterprise of lies organized by the Kremlin under Stalin's guidance."
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