The Stalinist Plan for the Transformation of Nature in Czechoslovakia

25.11.2016 (12:32)

New edited volume about stalinist large-scale projects in Eastern Europe and their impact on the environment including a paper by Arnošt Štanzel

Arnošt Štanzel, alumnus of the Graduate School for East and Southeast European Studies in Munich, contributed a paper to the volume "In the Name of the Great Work: Stalin's Plan for the Transformation of Nature and its Impact in Eastern Europe" which was edited by Doubravka Olšáková and released in September by Berghahn Books. Štanzel's and Olšáková's co-authored text is titled "Kafkaesque Paradigms: The Stalinist Plan for the Transformation of Nature in Czechoslovakia".

Doubravka Olšáková, Arnošt Štanzel: Kafkaesque Paradigms: The Stalinist Plan for the Transformation of Nature in Czechoslovakia (Chapter 1), in: Doubravka Olšáková (ed.): In the Name of the Great Work: Stalin's Plan for the Transformation of Nature and its Impact in Eastern Europe, New York; Oxford: Berhahn Book, 2016, pp. 43-125.

Abstract of the volume:

Beginning in 1948, the Soviet Union launched a series of wildly ambitious projects to implement Joseph Stalin’s vision of a total "transformation of nature". Intended to increase agricultural yields dramatically, this utopian impulse quickly spread to the newly communist states of Eastern Europe, captivating political elites and war-fatigued publics alike. By the time of Stalin's death, however, these attempts at "transformation" - which relied upon ideologically corrupted and pseudoscientific theories - had proven a spectacular failure. This richly detailed volume follows the history of such projects in three communist states - Poland, Hungary, and Czechoslovakia - and explores their varied, but largely disastrous, consequences.

Olšáková, Doubravka (ed.):
In the Name of the Great Work:
Stalin's Plan for the Transformation of Nature and its Impact in Eastern Europe
New York; Oxford: Berhahn Book, 2016.
322 pp.
ISBN 978-1-78533-252-4 Hb
$120.00/£75.00
eISBN 978-1-78533-253-1 eBook

Extract: Preface (pdf)

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