Author(s): Abraham Ascher
When the Bolsheviks seized power in1917 the world held its breath. Here suddenly was the first modern socialist state, "a kingdom more bright that any heaven had to offer." But the dream was short lived and the following decades of internal struggle, hardship, war, state terror, and eventual collapse would change the shape of world politics in a way that its leaders could never have imagined.How could such a revolution take place and what caused it to go so very wrong? Taking a uniquely long view of events, right up to the 1990s, acclaimed historian Abraham Ascher brings the period to life - from the utopian ideologies of Lenin and Trotsy to Russia's heroic fight against Nazi Germany, Stalin's state terror, the cold war, and Gorbachev's abortive attempts to rescue the socialist experiment. This incisive introduction offers new insight into the incredible transformation of politics, economics, and society that turned Russia into the Soviet Union - and back again.