eBook Ó Hitler and Stalin Parallel Lives µ hardcover ✓ Alan Bullock

reader ò Hitler and Stalin Parallel Lives º Alan Bullock

Physical description; xx 1189 p 28 p of plates ill ; 25 cm Notes; Includes bibliography p 1127 1150 and index English Summary; A comparative study of the lives and careers of Hitler and Stalin Alternate chapters on each serve both to draw contrasts and highlight parallels The author gives his reasons for believing that the key to an understanding the character of the two is the same Subjects; Hitler Adolf 1889 1945 Stalin Joseph 1878 1953 Stalin Iosif 1879 1953 Hitler Adolf 1889 1945 Studies Stalin J This book made a positive impression when it appeared in 1991 Alan Bullock’s distinguished academic career had been preceded by the publication of his biography of Hitler Hitler A Study in Tyranny which was acclaimed from its publication in 1951 as one of the finest explanations of Hitler Beginning in the 1970s Bullock became increasingly fascinated by the comparisons between the Nazi and Soviet empires the irony of the theoretically opposed ideology but often startlingly similar methods their tense interrelationship and differences as well Bullock felt that the focus on the West and Germany had resulted in a neglect of the German Russian axis an interest in the East that preceded important studies by historians such as Norman Davies and recently the even tightly focussed study of Timothy Snyder in Bloodlands Bullock’s book returns to Hitler focussing on a comparison of him and Stalin as the framework for a comparison of the two regimes It broadens previous attention to political theory in constructing the concept of the Totalitarian state and takes a less emotionally invested approach to those in the 1980s who attempted a comparison to try and portray the crimes of the Nazi’s as perversely mitigated by the similarities with Soviet Russia the Historikerstreit or ‘historian’s fight’The subtitle is significant Bullock borrows the concept of “Parallel Lives” from Plutarch implying similarities but also lineslives that “never meet or merge” The structure of the book must have been a challenge For most of the book he alternates between HitlerGermany and StalinUSSR until chapter ten where the two are compared Once he reaches a discussion of foreign policy in the 1930s and the period from the Nazi Soviet pact onwards the two subjects are dealt with in a integrated way This section by its nature flows better and possesses greater coherence however its bedrock is the individual treatment earlier in the bookBullock’s writing is pleasing and flows well workmanlike and unpretentious His broad reading is supported by the voluminous amounts of primary research materials released during Perestroika and afterwards and the 1998 second edition contains extensive updates as well as the usual corrections The well produced first edition hardback shows a standard of publishing which is certainly becoming rarer now with well laid out pages and about five noticeable ‘typos’ in a book of almost 1000 pagesThe book balances the elements of historical biography and the necessary context well It looks at the men on a personal level although it focusses on the experiences and personal traits which drive their historical actions rather than giving too much about their personal life thankfully it avoids the dubious realms of pop psychology or obsession with missing testicals etc The context of the regimes is described well and sufficiently both to describe the men themselves as well as giving a good picture of the politics of the time There perhaps was some temptation taken to delve a bit deeply into the tactical and strategic aspects of World War 2 than was strictly necessary although these passages certainly made good reading and provided some good insights Probably the chapters on World War 2 are those that have dated the most with research over the past twenty years although not to the point of obsolescenceSo what are Mr Bullock’s key arguments? One point of strong comparison between the two men is their dual sense of historical purpose Each believes they have a destiny as great men which gives them the confidence and determination to pursue power with great effectiveness They also both possess incredible natural political instincts The ability to outsmart and outthink their opponents to surprise them and where necessary ruthlessly devour them Both men worked their way up from nowhere completely dependent on their skills for advancement Stalin had an added handicap of needing to carefully conceal his ambitions in the context of collective leadership whereas Hitler was free to develop and exploit the ‘Fuhrer myth’ Both had constraints though and Stalin’s machinations in the 1920s to gain power without revealing his hand have some similarities with the contortions of Hitler’s commitment to ‘legality’ in coming to power after the failure of the Beer Hall putsch although the ultimate goal was never concealed Stalin’s lowest point as he was deceived and ultimately humiliated by Hitler is the pivot of the book It is here that we see the ultimate interaction of the two dictators Hitler’s strategic brilliance Stalin’s attempts to buy time In these pages are one of the most significant factors which will later be telling in the war effort Yes Stalin had ripped the heart out of the Red Army or at least the head with his purges of the leadership Hitler and most of Europe didn’t take Russia seriously as a military opponent However even this did not overcome Hitler’s economic problems He needed to conuer territory in order to keep rearming and vice versa Bullock well points out the Nazi failure to put the full economy on a war footing until surprisingly late in the war and the lost ground due to competing factions in the Nazi governmentThe ensuing war is dealt with well at a strategic and diplomatic level Hitler’s intervention positive and negative in military decisionmaking is well covered as is Stalin’s halting but steadily improving military oversight after the shock of the initial German invasion Bullock carries the story beyond the final destruction of Hitler’s dream and his descent to paranoia blame and a sense that for Germany they would ‘all go down together’ The final years of Stalin’s regime just provide further evidence of his brutal and paranoid nature as well as the lessons he uickly learnt from history in ensuring the best possible East European buffer for the Soviet Union Hitler and Stalin is a powerful detailed book which shows how so many of the central events of the twentieth century revolved around these two men The ‘great man’ theory of history is widely denigrated but Bullock’s sound exposition of the facts points out clearly both the centrality of these two men to the regimes they ruled as well as how individual will belief and drive can powerfully influence world historical events ones which saw a dramatic change from the long nineteenth century and an ensuing period where perversely immense Western prosperity sat alongside the repercussions of millions o

ePub Hitler and Stalin Parallel Lives

Hitler and Stalin Parallel LivesRaphies biography individual Germany Russia Union of Soviet Socialist Republics Fascism Nazism ; Biography autobiography historical political military ; Marxism Communism European history from c 1900 Germany ; Former Soviet Union USSR Europe Political Science Political Ideologies Fascism Totalitarianism Biography Autobiography Political History Europe Germany History Modern 20th Century Political Science Political Ideologies Communism Post Communism Socialism Genres; Bibliography Biography Illustrate A great narrator and historiandon't be put off by the length of this book Engrossing and a must read for anyone interested in the Third ReichStalin's Russia

Alan Bullock º Hitler and Stalin Parallel Lives book

eBook Ó Hitler and Stalin Parallel Lives µ hardcover ✓ Alan Bullock ✓ Physical description; xx 1189 p 28 p of plates ill ; 25 cm Notes; Includes bibliography p 1127 1150 and index English Summary; A comparative study of the lives and careers of Hitler and Stalin Alternate chapters on eaOseph 1879 1953 Studies Heads of state Europe Biography Heads of state Soviet Union Biography Heads of state Germany Biography Dictators Germany Biography Germany History 20th century Soviet Union History 20th century World War 1939 1945 Germany History 1933 1945 Soviet Union History 1925 1953 Europe History 20th century Germany Foreign relations Soviet Union 1933 1945 Soviet Union Foreign relations Germany 1917 1945 Germany History 1918 1945 Union of Soviet Socialist Republics History 1922 1945 Biog Phew I survived reading this book mentally intact That feels like a small miracle It is hard to imagine two evil men In fact at times Parallel Lives reads like fantasy because it is almost inconceivable that people could actually have behaved like Hitler and Stalin did But in the end I think the prize for most evil man of the 20th century or perhaps any century goes to drum roll Joseph Vissarionovich Stalin He definitely wins hands down no uestion I think it is poetic justice that he died virtually at his own hand SPOILER ALERT Having killed off all the doctors in Russia there was no one to treat him when he got ill So the bastard died There is justice in the universe