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The High Title of a Communist
Postwar Party Discipline and the Values of the Soviet Regime
“This book is a significant contribution to the field. It straddles two periods—the late Stalin and the Khrushchev eras—and identifies interesting and underappreciated continuities between them. For social historians there is also a wealth of information on how the party intruded into the private and family life of individuals and on the personal and existential trauma of being expelled from a movement to which many of its members had dedicated their lives.”—Yoram Gorlizki, University of Manches
“Edward Cohn’s The High Title of a Communist makes an important contribution . . . by turning our attention to the Communist Party itself and specifically to how it handled wayward comrades between 1945 and 1964.”—H-Net Reviews
“Cohn’s work contributes much to knowledge of the changing lives of Communist Party members in the immediate postwar years in the USSR. Recommended.”
Between 1945 and 1964, six to seven million members of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union were investigated for misconduct by local party organizations and then reprimanded, demoted from full party membership, or expelled. Party leaders viewed these investigations as a form of moral education and used humiliating public hearings to discipline wrongdoers and send all Soviet citizens a message about how Communists should behave.
May 2015, 260 pp., 21 illus., 6x9
Edward Cohn is assistant professor of history at Grinnell College.
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