Stalin's Soviet Union

Dec 13, 2011

Sometimes a prominent historical figure achieves a resurgence...not necessarily in popularity, but in our daily conversation. It’s been that kind of year for Joseph Stalin.

The Soviet leader’s name has been evoked by Russia’s current leader, Vladimir Putin - who sometimes refers to him as a good leader. The Stalin name was used by another former Russian leader - Mikhail Gorbachev - as an epithet to describe Putin’s practices.

We also heard about the death recently of Stalin’s daughter at the age of 85 in Wisconsin...and now, this. Yale has unveiled a new digital archive of Stalin documents that provide new insight into this most controversial figure.

Today, we’ll look at what’s in these archives - we’ll consider Stalin’s influence on modern Russia - and we’ll talk to members of Connecticut’s Ukranian American community about the great famine of the early 1930s that killed millions of Ukranians - and was linked directly to Stalin’s policies.

Join the conversation - are you a historian of World War II or Soviet Russia? What role do you think Stalin played in shaping our world today? Are you a member of the Ukranian American community?