Stalin and the desire for 'Total Power'.

Essay by the_nut20University, Bachelor's June 2003

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Question: Why did Stalin emerge victorious in the power struggle? Did he have already 'total powers' by 1933?

This essay describes Stalins manipulative ability that he utilised to gain power in the USSR. It describes how he demoralised and defamed his contenders due to his desire to grasp totalitarian leadership of the country, and the methods employed in doing so. It also specifies Stalins ability to align and realign with various allies that support his ideal that he continually descibes as 'Leninist.'


Stalin emerged victorious in the power struggle for the Soviet leadership due to his sheer determination to succeed. Stalin possessed an absolute desire to lead the Soviet Union at all costs. His ability to adapt to, and manipulate situations so they resulted in favouring circumstances for his own personal gain, was remarkable. Following the gradual demise of Lenin, Stalin was in a position to manoeuvre for control of the leadership by defaming his contenders and claiming his own ideals to be of Leninist origins.

By 1933, Stalin's power had achieved full strength, and he was able to exercise his totalitarian authority at will.

Iosif Vissarionovich Dzhugashvili (Stalin) was the successor of the immense power struggle between varying parties following the death of Lenin in 1924. Throughout the 1920's the Soviet regime had been undergoing a process of transition and change in an attempt to rebuild the Soviet Empire. Various strategies were employed including the NEP (New Economic Policy) and collectivisation in an attempt to restore prosperity to the Soviet economy by the rulers Lenin and Stalin. Such policies were necessary due to the structure of Russian society. The population was very unevenly distributed throughout the country, with the bulk of society far to poor to farm the land in an effective and productive manner.