How far did Stalin destroy Lenin’s legacy?
Stalin destroyed Lenin’s Legacy:
• Stalin created a personal dictatorship, Lenin ruled through the party etc. Stalin was more interested in furthering his own interests... as suggested by the excessive use of the cult of personality etc.
• Lenin was against the concept of the cult of personality and personal rule, under Lenin there was much more debate within the party, unlike Stalin’s reign where he forced his policies through with the use of fear or the party machine etc.
• It also seems that Stalin was hungry to achieve supreme power right from the word go, using Lenin’s funeral to his own advantage setting himself up as his disciple and also damaging Trotsky’s reputation.
• This would suggest that Stalin did not care so much for the creation of a communist ...view middle of the document...
Stalin also destroyed all most all of the old Bolsheviks/Lenin’s Politburo suggesting that he had no intention of fulfilling Lenin’s legacy.
• Lenin also intended that there would be a revolution of the proletariat, which is far from the revolution from above (Collectivisation/5YPs) that Stalin imposed.
• The view that Lenin was forced by the circumstances of the Civil War and bad economic conditions, he had to create a highly centralised state and had to use War Communism/Repression etc.
Stalin fulfilled Lenin’s Legacy:
• Lenin laid the foundations for Stalinism, i.e. the organs for repression and terror (Secret Police, Labour Camps, show trials, purges... etc) which he had also significantly used during his time in power – even though he did not go to the extent Stalin did.
• Lenin was also the first to say that the Kulaks should be destroyed – this was not necessarily just Stalin’s idea, he was even following Lenin’s orders.
• Lenin was not keen on the NEP, he only saw it as breathing space and time for the economy to recover, he did not intend for it to last long.
• Stalin Five Year Plans were brought about in order to modernise Russia’s industry, Marx wrote that a proletariat revolution could only happen in these conditions, suggesting that Stalin was intending to implement a Marxist-Leninist state.
• Stalin’s ruthlessness in implementing his economic policies could also be compared to Lenin’s War Communism, where grain was taken from peasants by force and repression had to be used to a large extent.
• Stalinism did seem to be the logical conclusion of Leninism, as there was no clear path to follow after Lenin’s death...
• This view is usually taken by anti-communist historians during the cold war – that Lenin was a tyrant of sorts who imposed his will on the people and used repression etc..