Download Closer to the Masses: Stalinist Culture, Social Revolution, by Matthew Lenoe PDF

By Matthew Lenoe

during this provocative booklet, Matthew Lenoe strains the origins of Stalinist mass tradition to newspaper journalism within the past due Nineteen Twenties. In reading the transformation of Soviet newspapers throughout the New financial coverage and the 1st 5 12 months Plan, Lenoe tells a dramatic tale of purges, political intrigues, and social upheaval.

stressed from the occasion management to mobilize society for the enormous job of industrialization, newshounds formed a grasp narrative for Soviet heritage and helped create a Bolshevik id for thousands of recent communists. daily exertions grew to become an epic conflict to modernize the USSR, a struggle not just opposed to imperialists from outdoors, yet opposed to shirkers and saboteurs inside of. Soviet newspapermen mobilized get together activists by means of offering them with an identification as warrior heroes scuffling with for socialism. but in the framework of propaganda directives, the rank-and-file reporters improvised in ways in which finally contributed to the construction of a tradition. the photographs and metaphors crafted via Soviet newshounds turned the center of Stalinist tradition within the mid-1930s, and prompted the improvement of socialist realism.

Deeply researched and lucidly written, this e-book is an incredible contribution to the literature on Soviet tradition and society.


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Additional resources for Closer to the Masses: Stalinist Culture, Social Revolution, and Soviet Newspapers (Russian Research Center Studies)

Sample text

A siege mentality took hold among the Bolsheviks. " In early 1923 the Fourth Conference of the journalists' labor union (Soiuz rabotnikov pechati or SRP) passed resolutions denying the right of remaining independent periodicals to criticize the party. Conference delegates condemned the idea of an independent press, affirming that the Soviet state would create its own "truly healthy, truly comradely, truly proletarian criticism. " Worker-peasant correspondents, ordinary working people who wrote to the newspaper with accounts of disorders in their factories and villages, were supposed to serve as a check on corrupt or power-hungry Communists.

During the period covered by this paper open polemics between opposing factions within the Communist Party rarely appeared in either Pravda or Izvestiia. Writers in these newspapers could express opposition to the "general line of the party" only in muted and indirect language. Even when they disagreed among themselves party leaders remained obsessed with maintaining an appearance of unity in the press and public pronouncements. Lying beneath policy debates within the party was a very stable base of common assumptions about the tools and goals of governance, including the necessity of maintaining party unity and suppressing public dissent.

19 Agenda-setting was the most important CC tool for controlling the press during the NEP and after. There were a number of institutional mechanisms for determining the newspapers' agenda, including CC circulars, conferences with newspaper editors, and the publication of instructional journals. The Worker Gazette and Pravda also had the right to send representatives to Politburo, Orgburo, and Secretariat sessions, where they would learn what themes the leadership considered important. Through all of these channels CC agitprop officials informed newspaper editors about priority propaganda campaigns, proper presentation for different target audiences, and desirable articles.

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