Memoirs of Nikita Khrushchev
- Copyright: 2004
- Dimensions: 6.125 x 9.25
- Page Count: 1004 pages
- Illustrations: 57 b&w illustrations/
- Hardcover ISBN: 978-0-271-02332-8
- Paperback ISBN: 978-0-271-05853-5
- Co-publisher: Thomas J. Watson Jr. Institute, Brown University
“Nikita Khrushchev was one of the most important political leaders of the twentieth century. Without his memoirs, neither the rise and fall of the Soviet Union nor the history of the Cold War can be fully understood. By dictating his memoirs and publishing them in the West, Khrushchev transformed himself from the USSR’s leader to one of its first dissidents. His remarkably candid recollections were a harbinger of glasnost to come. Like virtually all memoirs, his have a personal and political agenda, but even what might be called Khrushchev’s ‘myth of himself’ is vital for understanding how this colorful figure could place his contradictory stamp on his country and the world. The fact that the full text of Khrushchev’s memoirs will now be available in English is cause for rejoicing.”
“One of the most extraordinary archives of the twentieth century”
“Khrushchev had a remarkable memory, and although the style and broad outline of what he has to say will be familiar to those who read the original two-volume English version issued in the early 1970s, the detail he provides here, particularly on the war, adds a great deal.”
“But his personal slant, conveyed in the World War II memoirs that make up half of this huge book, is important for understanding the political atmosphere during that colossal struggle. And the detail of his recall, without notes or references, is extraordinary.”
“Sergei Khrushchev (Thomas J. Watson Jr. Institute, Brown Univ.) has edited an exquisitely detailed, amply documented, remarkably translated first volume of a proposed three-volume translation of his father’s memoirs, based on the four-volume Russian edition of 1999.”
“There is a lot less high politics here than one would expect. Khrushchev’s focus is very often on chance encounters and small vignettes, often told at great length, rather than on reflections on the ‘big picture’ or revelations about key historical events. Yet it is this above all else that makes this work so readable, for it allows Khrushchev’s personality to come through in the text in all its contradictions and complexity.”
“This volume far exceeds in detail earlier editions of the Khrushchev memoirs and for readers of this journal especially, his observations of the war years are intriguing.”
Nikita Khrushchev’s proclamation from the floor of the United Nations that "we will bury you" is one of the most chilling and memorable moments in the history of the Cold War, but from the Cuban Missile Crisis to his criticism of the Soviet ruling structure late in his career the motivation for Khrushchev’s actions wasn’t always clear. Many Americans regarded him as a monster, while in the USSR he was viewed at various times as either hero or traitor. But what was he really like, and what did he really think? Readers of Khrushchev’s memoirs will now be able to answer these questions for themselves (and will discover that what Khrushchev really said at the UN was "we will bury colonialism").
This is the first volume of three in the only complete and fully reliable version of the memoirs available in English. In this volume, Khrushchev recounts how he became politically active as a young worker in Ukraine, how he climbed the ladder of power under Stalin to occupy leading positions in Ukraine and then Moscow, and how as a military commissar he experienced the war against the Nazi invaders. He vividly portrays life in Stalin's inner circle and among the generals who commanded the Soviet armies.
Khrushchev’s sincere reflections upon his own thoughts and feelings add to the value of this unique personal and historical document. Included among the Appendixes is Sergei Khrushchev’s account of how the memoirs were created and smuggled abroad during his father’s retirement.
Captions to Photographs
Andrei Bitov. The Baldest and the Boldest
Abbreviations and Acronyms
Part I. The Beginning of the Road
A Little About Myself
The Fourteenth Party Conference
A Few Words About the NEP
The Fifteenth Party Congress
The Move to Kharkov
The Move to Kiev
At the Industrial Academy
Personal Acquaintance with Stalin
The Kirov Assassination
Some Consequences of the Kirov Assassination
In the Ukraine Again
The Ukraine-Moscow (Crossroads of the 1930s)
The Second World War Approaches
The Beginning of the Second World War
Events on the Eve of War
Part II. The Great Patriotic War
The Difficult Summer of 1941
People and Events of Summer and Fall 1941
1942: From Winter to Summer
By the Ruins of Stalingrad
Turn of the Tide at Stalingrad
The Road to Rostov
Before the Battle of Kursk and at Its Beginning
To the Dnieper!
Kiev Is Ours Again!
We Liberate the Ukraine
Forward to Victory!
The Far East After the Great Patriotic War
A Short Biography of N. S. Khrushchev
L. Lasochko. The Khrushchev Family Line: A Historical Note
Sergei Khrushchev. The History of the Creation and Publication of the Khrushchev
Conversation with N. S. Khrushchev at the Party Control Committee
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This book is a part of the Association of American University Presses' Books for Understanding: Ukraine book list, created to help all of us better understand the world we live in.
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