This weighty--physically and emotionally--book speaks volumes about the play of individual and group memory in a totalitarian society. It grew from notebooks and files secretly kept by the Russian historian Roy Medvedev on the history of his times, from the emergence of Josef Stalin as a leader in the 1917 Revolution to the dictator's death in 1953. Some of the documents Medvedev gathered, including memoranda on secret agreements with Nazi Germany, shocked Russian readers when these notebooks first began to appear in 1988, and his book became one of the primary documents of glasnost.
The most comprehensive and revealing investigation of Stalinism and political developments in the Soviet Union from 1922-1953, this edition is an extensively revised and expanded version of a classic work. Internationally known historian Roy Medvedev has included more than one-hundred new interviews, unpublished memoirs, and archives from survivors of Stalin's death camps. This updated version of a classic work was written during a time of great change in the Soviet Union. With the advent of perestroika and glasnost, more progressive leadership has sought to demolish the Stalinist system which had finally crippled the Soviet Union and incited public discontent.
Let History Judge contains new material on: purges in 1929-1931 and terror against the peasantry, the Kirov assasination and show trials, the "great terror" from 1936-1938 which caused irreparable damage to the Soviet Union and left it vulnerable for Hilter's attack in 1941, the trial of Bukharin, Trotsky's revolutionary activity and Stalin's involvement with his murder in Mexico, Stalin's miscalculations and errors during the war which cost the Soviet Union nearly 25 million in casualties, new purges from 1946-1953, and the actual vote of the Seventeenth Congress, which decided Stalin's candidacy.
Since the first edition was finished by the author in 1969 and published in 1971, dozens of new informants have come forward to give their evidence to Roy Medvedev. Distinguished Soviet literary, cultural, and political figures like the late Alexander Twardovsky, Ilja Ehrenburg, Konstantin Simonov, Yuri Trifono, Mikhail Romm and many others have accumulated documentary records of Stalinism in anticipation of an expanded version.
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