“A most important and pioneering book―the only full-scale study of the Russian revolution and the peasant from 1917 through the first wave of mass collectivization in 1930.” ―Stephen F. Cohen
The collectivization of the peasants in the USSR constituted a social upheaval of a totally unprecedented nature. It was one of the most remarkable events of the present century and it has a history as long as that of Soviet power itself. The idea of a collectivized agriculture, much favoured by the leadership after the revolution, had been left in abeyance during the NEP period. Interest in the idea, and in the collective movement, revived at the time of the ‘grain crisis’ at the beginning of 1928. It was during this crisis that collectivization of the peasantry and the creation of a powerful kolkhoz and sovkhoz sector began to be taken seriously as a means of solving, at one and the same time, both the formidable problem of grain and the whole ‘accursed problem’ of relations between the Soviet authorities and the peasants.