Theorizing the Soviet Bureaucracy
Review of Trotsky and the Problem of Soviet Bureaucracy

Murphy, Kevin

Publisher:  Against the Current
Date Written:  01/01/2018
Year Published:  2018  
Resource Type:  Article
Cx Number:  CX23274

A review of the book: Trotsky and the Problem of Soviet Bureaucracy by Thomas M. Twiss.




Thomas Twiss goes against this anti-Trotsky current in his study of Trotsky and the Problem of Soviet Bureaucracy. This is a thoughtful and meticulous work on many levels. Twiss aims "to explain the development of Trotsky’s thinking on the problem of Soviet bureaucracy."

While focusing on the Soviet bureaucracy, Twiss does not isolate it from the political economy of the Stalinist system. This is perhaps the most systematic work yet on Trotsky's frequently changing and dynamic analysis. And while clearly sympathetic to Trotsky, Twiss often takes issue with his positions and avoids indulging in the latest Russian Studies' fad of acting as an inept lawyer for his subject.

Much of Twiss's analysis is based on a skillful integration of what is now known about various aspects of the Stalinist system. He repeatedly criticizes Trotsky for accepting the veracity of Stalinist propaganda, such as the Shakhty show trial of engineers in 1928 and Menshevik show trial in 1931.


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