Behind the Urals: An American Worker in Russiaas City of Steel

Behind the Urals An American Worker in Russiaas City of Steel Students reading Scott have come away with a real appreciation of the hardships under which these workers built Magnitogorsk and of the nearly incredible enthusiasm with which many of them worked Rona

  • Title: Behind the Urals: An American Worker in Russiaas City of Steel
  • Author: John Scott Stephen Kotkin
  • ISBN: 9780253205360
  • Page: 182
  • Format: Paperback
  • Students reading Scott have come away with a real appreciation of the hardships under which these workers built Magnitogorsk and of the nearly incredible enthusiasm with which many of them worked Ronald Grigor SunyA genuine grassroots account of Soviet life a type of book of which there have been far too few William Henry Chamberlin, New York Times, 1943 a richStudents reading Scott have come away with a real appreciation of the hardships under which these workers built Magnitogorsk and of the nearly incredible enthusiasm with which many of them worked Ronald Grigor SunyA genuine grassroots account of Soviet life a type of book of which there have been far too few William Henry Chamberlin, New York Times, 1943 a rich portrait of daily life under Stalin New York Times Book ReviewGeneral readers, students, and specialists alike will find much of relevance for understanding today s Soviet Union in this new edition of John Scott s vivid exploration of daily life in the formative days of Stalinism.

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    1 thought on “Behind the Urals: An American Worker in Russiaas City of Steel”

    1. An American worker goes to Magnitogorsk to "build socialism" during the First Five Year Plan. A memoir of a true believer.

    2. Author Scott lived and worked and married and had children in ussr working as a welder then in a chemical plant and went to higher education in red learning and sciences. The descriptions of building the biggest steel mills/blast furnaces anywhere in the middle of nowhere ( Magnitogorsk) are detailed, gritty, and don’t white wash anything. Neat look at ussr before wwii.

    3. This paperback has been sitting on my shelf since the early 90s, when I was supposed to have read this book for a Russian history class I dropped. Based on this book, I’m pretty happy with that decision, made over two decades ago. This is an autobiographical journaling of John Scott, son of American Communist sympathizers who was raised to idealize the “Workers’ paradise” of communism. He boldly decided to experience this paradise for himself by traveling to Magnitogorsk, the Gary, India [...]

    4. A must read for anyone wanting to understand the hope that communism inspired. Also a must read for anyone wanting to understand how communism also crushed those hopes.

    5. Great account of the hardships of workers in the Soviet Union who are motivated by the cause of building socialism. Super interesting to see the evolution of their initial unreserved support for the Bolsheviks' communism and their patronisation of those who had to "suffer" capitalism to their eventual acceptance of privation and growing skepticism of the "greater cause."Though I like the neutral-observer characteristic of the American author immersing himself in this completely different society [...]

    6. The common man inside view of a very mediocre societal system which hopefully wont make a return, its all I can say. Orwell's Animal Farm put to practice.

    7. I read this in a history class on totalitarianism, the book itself told the human story behind totalitarian regimes and the impact of Stalin's five year plans on ordinary working people. The one thing I remember is the disillusionment of the author, his optimism upon reaching what he thought would be a socialist utopia and his realization of the hardship and squalor of industrializing USSR.

    8. Fascinating account of life in a Soviet start-up industrial city during a very interesting period (1930s). Magnitogorsk was built to rival the steel production capability of massive steel centers such as Gary, Indiana. Built with imported equipment and by uneducated farmers, the project is obtained with much blood and sweat.Scott goes between depictions of daily life and descriptions of industrial conditions and materials. His accounts of daily life are the most interesting, but the information [...]

    9. The book presented an interesting view of a segment of Russian society, from about 1932 - 1940. In the book you learn about how Russia built and industrial revolution in a very short period of time. The author kind of glazes over the atrocities and horrible conditions of these times and even of Stalins great purges of 1938 - 1939. He does talk about them, but he tries to accentuate the positive. Not really the good, but more positive then the reality probably was. He usually does this economical [...]

    10. 3.5 stars, but I'll round up.This was one of the more enjoyable non-fiction books I've read (though I don't read many). It followed John Scott as he lived and learned in the Soviet Union during the 1930s. It was definitely revealing, giving an insider perspective from an outsider, and Scott created a nice balance between personal narrative and history. It was quite informative and easy to read, all in all, a pleasant experience.

    11. A compelling tale like pretty much everyone else who thought the Soviet state was a great idea of human progress, the reality was disappointing. Worth reading to get insight into the push to industrialize and the reality of Soviet life.

    12. An interesting story of ex-patriot moving to the freshly minted Soviet Union during the Great Depression. A little heavy on statistical data, but telling of the enduring hardships faced against the weather and the Soviet bureaucracy in forming their new government.

    13. This book is not for everyone. Butif you are interested in history without being a fanatic, this is a good read. It is written as a memoir to some extent and deals with life in post-revolution Russia (USSR, whatever) and the people who immigrated there with big ideals.

    14. I can't remember a single God-foreskin thing about this book except that I read it for an Intro to Politics class my first quarter of college.

    15. Interesting account of the early years of the Soviet Union told by an American who went to the USSR shortly after the revolution.

    16. Textbook for 20th Century Russia class. Good first hand account of Russia's first Five Year Plan. I thought it was a little dry and slow in some parts.

    17. Fascinating story of an American mechanical engineer who went to the USSR to build the Magnitogorsk iron and steel complex. Unbelievable working conditions and a fascinating story

    18. I read this book in college and enjoyed it greatly because it proved how horrible the communist system was.

    19. Fascinating story - primary source for a time and era for which primary sources are difficult to find. Surprisingly easy to read.

    20. An interesting book that takes on a decidedly different tone once you get to the appendices and find the dispatches the author sent back to the US State Dept during his stay in the USSR.

    21. Clear, journalistic writing makes this account incredibly insightful, while simultaneously (and possibly without Scott's knowledge) pointing to the extreme tension of the Soviet system.

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