preview

Communism In The Soviet Union And Why It Failed

Better Essays
Communism in the Soviet Union and Why it Failed

Communism is defined as "a system of political and economic organization in which property is owned by the community and all citizens share in the enjoyment of the common wealth, more or less according to their need." In 1917 the rise of power in the Marxist-inspired Bolsheviks in Russia along with the consolidation of power by Vladimir Lenin and Joseph Stalin, the word communism came to mean a totalitarian system controlled by a single political party. This came to justify that the means of production is controlled and the wealth is distributed with the goal of producing a classless or possibly a stateless society. The ideological meaning of communism arose in 1848 with the publication of the Communist Manifesto by Karl Marx and Friedrich Engels. They believed that communism is inevitable and is an outcome of the historical process. They believed that the "struggle between an exploiting class, the capatalists at present age, and an exploited class, the workers, would enter a crucial stage in the period of capitalism where industrialization occurs and that the effects of industrialization is to heighten and intensify the internal contradictions in capitalism." To put it bluntly they believed that the ownership of industry would be in fewer and fewer hands where the workers would plunge into a state of ever-increasing misery. These impoverished workers grow in numbers and organize themselves into a political party which would lead a revolution in which they dispose of the capitalists. The proletariat would establish a society governed by a " dictatorship of the proletariat" based on communal ownership of the wealth. According to Marx this phase of human society is referred to as socialism. Communism is the final transcendence of this revolution in which there is a break up and elimination of the state and no class division. That is the primary reason that it was called the Union of
Soviet Socialist Republics. In 1991 the Soviet Union collapsed. What was the problem with this system of government, if this is a workers paradise what happened ? What did the Soviet Union do wrong to cause a breakdown of their ideal system ? In this paper I will explore the rise of the Soviet power and causes of the 1991 breakup.

The person who started the whole transition into a communist empire was ...

... middle of paper ...

...nd lacked spark. The respect and fear they once generated was rapidly declining in an increasingly young and educated country. This weakness of political dissent within the Soviet Union was also important to the crisis. It planted seeds of antitotalitarianism and anticommunism in the native soil. Also the potential for political action sunk to an all time low in the community.

The final problem that they encountered was in their relationships with other nations and ethnic groups. This may have been the most potent flaw in their system. Non-Russian ethnic regions contained under developed, peasant cultures.
These groups were able to resist with surprising force subordination to Russian culture or submersion into the Soviet state. This lack of development led to cultivation of old ethnic identities and the process of modernization only created new strains.

The Soviet Union lost all of its internal vitality, the powers of the regime were still intense. Decay was probably unavoidable but the disintegration did not seem immediate. The counter actions to the already failing government are what caused the final demise of the nation, the actions only accelerated the demise of communism.
Get Access