Stalin was trying to push the people so they can be an advanced country. He wanted to make up the difference between the advanced countries and Russia in 10 years. He said, "Either we do it or we will be crushed." Stalin's Five-Year Plans set high production goals for heavy industry and transportation. Other changes Stalin made were to increase production in agriculture by the collectivization policy.
In addition, World War II introduced change through industrialisation, which was key to Russia’s success in the war. These key reforming leaders and other factors of change saw Russia grow from a very deprived country in 1856 to an industrial superpower in 1964. Alexander II became known as ‘Alexander the Great Reformer’ and ‘the Tsar Liberator’ which suggests that his work and reforms changed the nature of Russian government and society to a large extent. The emancipation of the Serfs in 1861 initially appeared to have major benefits for the serfs. As Alexander II said: “We vowed in our hearts to fulfil the mission which is entrusted to Us and to surround with Our affection and Our Imperial solicitude all Our faithful subjects of every rank and condition”2.
Evidently, Industries like coal steel and iron grew enormously. For instance Coal production in 1928 prior to the five year plan was 36million tonnes, and in 1932 it was 65 million tonnes. Furthermore, Magnitogorsk which was constructed during the first five year plan aided the trebling of steel production during the second year plan. However, the production of crude oil only rose marginally, from 29 million tonnes in 1037 to 31 million tonnes in 1940. Additionally the production of steel stagnated.
Stalin's reasons for launching the First Five-Year Plan were ideological, political and economic. Stalin believed that socialism was key if he wanted a highly advanced industrialised nation. The Communist revolution had taken place in an economically backward country which was perhaps a hundred years behind the advanced economies in the West. Therefore, in order to make the dream of socialism a reality, Stalin set an agenda - 'in ten years at most we must make good the distance which separates us from the advanced capitalist countries. Stalin had full control of the media in the Soviet Union.
Explain why in the years 1906 to 1911, Stolypin attempted to reform agriculture. (12 marks) Stolypin attempted to reform agriculture for many reasons, one of the most important being to strengthen tsarist autocracy. He strongly believed that the future of Russia depended on building a prosperous peasantry. There was widespread rural poverty but an upper class of peasant that farmed efficiently and were wealthier, they were known as the Kulaks. Stolypin believed that the encouragement of a class such as the Kulaks would make them hostile to further change therefore more conservative and loyal to the Tsar as the Tsar had made them wealthy.
How far do you agree that the most important development in the industrialisation of Russia from 1855 to 1965 was a result of Witte’s great spurt? After the defeat at Crimea, industrialisation the on became a key priority for each leader, sometimes at the expense of other sectors such agriculture and the general wellbeing of the peasantry. Some historians feel Witte was the figure who kick-started Russian industrialisation in the form of his ‘Great Spurt’. However others feel without Alexander II emancipation of the serfs all the progress made after him wouldn’t have been possible. Other than Witte the only Russian Leader to have made such a big of an impact on Russian industrialisation is Stalin and his five year plans.
How Successful Were the Policies of Industrialisation and Collectivisation Industrialisation and Collectivisation were both introduced by Stalin to modernise the USSR and its agriculture. They were designed to help meet the challenges that were to follow however Stalin had a big task on his hands. When he took over Russia after Lenin, the industry was only focused in a few major cities where the workers were badly educated and therefore unskilled. So, Stalin went about modernising Russia by introducing a series of five-year-plans. This was the beginning of industrialisation.
How far were Mao’s agricultural policies responsible for the scale of the great famine in China? The collectivisation programme Mao had established in 1956 aimed to massively increase agricultural and industrial production yet instead it is argued that it led to the worst famine in China’s history. A variety of reasons were cited for the famine most notable were the poor weather conditions, deliberate policy and Lysenkoism, though perhaps the most significant of all was indeed Mao’s policy of collectivisation. Mao’s collectivisation policy had been seen to compliment his industrialisation plans, and to revolutionise Chinese food production. He intended to provide an industrial basis for China by ordering 25,000 strictly regimented communes, thus making agriculture more efficient which would enable more farmers to labour in industry.
How successful was Stalin’s economic policy In terms of how successful was Stalin’s economic policy we need to take into consideration the successes and failures of collectivisation, moreover the economic successes and failures, and also the limitations the three five year plans. In reference to the successes of collectivisation, this included economic accomplishment for the government whereby the state procurement did not decline in which the government had collected all the grain they needed in order to sell it abroad to pay for industrial equipment, moreover in relation to achievement due to collectivisation the peasants had fled to the towns which meant there was more labour for setting up factories, which helped in Stalin’s dream of rapid industrialisation in Russia. Furthermore in mention of successes for the government and undoubtedly a success for Stalin’s economic policy; collectivisation was a political success. The party gained control of the villages and this meant the government did no longer have to bargain with the peasants anymore moreover collectivisation in terms of a political success for the government it was an essential part of modernising Russia. However the failures of collectivisation may contradict the theory of Stalin’s economic policy being a success; whereby this is in relation to how collectivisation resulted in both economic failure and human cost.
His “Great Turn” can be seen as a realistic and attractive policy, suited to the rank and file of the party, that he did not adopt earlier in the 20’s since it was not a fitting policy at the time. The problems in ideology could be seen to link to the problems with agriculture as it was the Kulak class that Stalin held responsible for hoarding the grain and demanding higher prices for it, thus if the ideology changed to rid Soviet society of such elements, then haste could be seen to be of importance. However this was not the only problem with Russian agriculture. Farming methods were