• Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

European Integration in a Historical Perspective.

Extracts from this document...


European Integration in a Historical Perspective "The emergence of a command economy in the Soviet Union during the Stalin era was the result of diplomatic isolation rather than the consequence of ideological precepts: economic planning appeared to guarantee a higher rate of growth and self-sufficiency." Discuss. Milan Samani I will begin the discussion of the above quote by defining a command economy. I will then place this definition within a geographical and historical context, thereby analysing it in the Soviet Union and during the Stalin era. I will then explain the reasons for its emergence and place the roles of both ideology and the Soviet Union's diplomatic isolation, and how they are inter-linked. I will define the Stalin era as the period between Lenin's death in January 19241 and Stalin's death in March 1952. An economic definition of a command economy is one where 'a state planning office decides what will be produced, how it will be produced, and for whom it will be produced. Detailed instructions are then issued to households, workers and firms'2. This definition is an economic archetype, and no complete command economy, where all allocation decisions are undertaken in this way, exists. ...read more.


Stalin believed that it was 'through heavy industry, that the rest of the benefits of the economy would come.8' How exactly he arrived at this assumption is unclear, as the model of growth that he used (i.e. that of 'extensive growth'9), is, and proved to be, unsustainable in the long run. However, the motivational factor of economic growth was present nonetheless. Stalin also stressed the security considerations of the Soviet Union. Russia had a feeble war industry and lacked steel and machinery-making capacity. The army's shortage of weapons during the First World War emphasised this point. Although Russia had had the allied exports from France and the UK, the fact of geography had made impeded the flow off supplies. Added to this was the fact that Russia's allies were by no means certain in the years to come, Stalin believing that the Soviet Union was within a ring of 'imperialist encirclement10'. These economic realities played a large role in shaping the nature of Stalin's command economy. However, there were also political factors at work. Throughout Lenin's period of rule, the working class was small, the majority of the population being peasants (the so-called 'peasant problem'). ...read more.


So, in conclusion, I would attribute the emergence of the command economy in the Soviet Union during the Stalin era to a combination of the two factors that define Stalinism itself as an ideology: the push for modernisation and economic growth and the ideological doctrine of 'socialism in one country'. The first factor, that of modernisation, was influenced by the pursuit of personal power (the political penetration of the economy meant that Stalin had overall control), economic realities (Stalin's belief that heavy industry, not demand-driven consumer goods was the key to building a strong economy), and political factors (the creation of the proletariat). The second factor is influenced by the fact that the economic reality of diplomatic isolation was not an alternative to, but the cause of the doctrine of 'socialism in one country'. The purely ideological precept of self-sufficiency did play a role in the emergence of the command economy, but it was itself conceived by the fact that the Soviet Union was diplomatically isolated. In short, diplomatic isolation spawned the ideological precept of self-sufficiency and it was this, combined with the drive for modernisation and economic growth (itself affected by economic, political, and personal factors) that caused the emergence of a command economy in the Soviet Union in the Stalin era. ...read more.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our GCSE Economy & Economics section.

Found what you're looking for?

  • Start learning 29% faster today
  • 150,000+ documents available
  • Just £6.99 a month

Not the one? Search for your essay title...
  • Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

See related essaysSee related essays

Related GCSE Economy & Economics essays

  1. The structure of the airline industry.

    As you can see from the graph, the U.S. dollar has risen steadily in value for the last few years, even during the recession. The strong U.S. dollar is due in part to economic fluctuations in other countries and the devaluation of some foreign currencies during the 1990's. The Mexican peso declined in value throughout the late 1990's, while currencies of Thailand and Malaysia were devalued in 1997.

  2. Industrial revolution in Russia

    In a host of industries, Russia ranked fourth, for example, in steel output. Having in mind the unusual size of Russia's population - industrial production was less impressive, and it included some technologically backward sectors as well as relatively advanced heavy industry.

  1. Retailing In India - A Government Policy Perspective

    as it was from HMT, and any radio as long as Phillips produced it. The story is no longer the same. The past decade has witnessed a tremendous revolution in the Indian Retail scenario. Market liberalization and an increasingly assertive consumer population is now sowing the seeds of a retail

  2. Environmental Analysis Of Landis Lund.

    $0.5 Hourly Labour Costs in Manufacturing US Dollars West Germany 23.8 Germany 22.9 Belgium 21.9 Switzerland 21.8 Netherlands 19.3 Sweden 18.4 Eurozone 17.6 UK 16.1 France 15.9 East Germany 15.4 Italy 13.8 Spain 10.9 United States 20.3 Japan 19.6 Korea 8.1 China 0.5 Source: Oxford Economic Forecasting With the major

  1. Global Business Plan.

    the number of poor people having been halved between 1992 and 1998. Their number under this criterion still amounted to around 130 million in 1998. This development is impressive and reflects the success of the efforts of the last two decades in reducing poverty and improving the economic situation.

  2. Discuss the relationship between the emergence of the modern Indian Diaspora and the operations ...

    The maintenance of the indentured labour population was not the responsibility of the planter class. Instead, it marked a new development in the international labour situation, as a modern form of wage employment developed under a system of servitude. This system represented a transitory period between the rise of industrial capitalism and the emergence of finance capitalism in 1917.

  1. Free essay

    From an economic perspective should my council do more to recycle a greater proportion ...

    Furthermore, it will show whether the household members are recycling as much as they think they are and it could give suggestions, which could help me provide recommendations for the council to encourage recycling. To be able to compare between local, national, and my household's figures I will need to carry out secondary research.

  2. Economics in a European Context Coursework - Monetary Union

    and they may receive a larger than average increase in revenue. With a single currency this uncertainty will be eliminated and will benefit smaller businesses significantly as they are able to plan into the future and estimate the value of their goods and services.

  • Over 160,000 pieces
    of student written work
  • Annotated by
    experienced teachers
  • Ideas and feedback to
    improve your own work