Communism and Hunger by Andrea Graziosi

Communism and Hunger by Andrea Graziosi (editor) – The Ukrainian, Chinese, Kazakh, and Soviet Famines in Comparative Perspective – is a book based on presentations given at a conference from 2014. Each author presented a paper on a different topic, on Holodomor, on the Chinese famine during the Great Leap Forward, famine in Kazakhstan in the 1932-1933 (same one as in Ukraine).

Communism and Hunger by Andrea Graziosi

I found this book very interesting and I think it could be enjoyed by non-historians as well. There are a lot of similarities between the 1931-1933 soviet experiment and the Chinese leap forward in 1959-1961. As the articles are dealing with comparisons, it makes the information engaging for a non-researcher as well.

For me this is a very important book, as I am studying this period. At the same time, I think it is a book worth reading in general. The specificities of each group – Ukrainians, Kazakhs, and Chinese are fascinating. The authors talk about ethnicity and where that was important and it was not a factor, about nomadic versus settled people, railways, bureaucratic districts, requisitions, ideology. It is varied and, thus, fascinating.

Communism and Hunger by Andrea Graziosi

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My rating: 5/5 Stars
Would I recommend it: yes
Published by: University of Alberta Press
Year it was published: 2016
Format: Paperback
Genre(s): History
Pages: 176

About the authors: Andrea Graziosi, the editor, is Professor of Contemporary History at the University of Naples Federico II. He has studied and taught in American, russian, and European universities.

Nicolas Werth is Research Director at the CNRS’s Institut d’Histoire du Temps Présent (Paris). Since his first book (Être communiste en URSS sous Staline, 1981), he has written numerous works on Soviet social history, Stalinism and mass violence.

Sarah Cameron is assistant professor of Soviet history at the University of Maryland-College Park. She earned her PhD in history at Yale University.

Xun Zhou is Lecturer of Modern History at University of Essex and the author of The Great Famine in China, 1958-1962: a Documentary History (2012).

Lucien Bianco is an eminent French historian and Sinologist specializing in the history of the Chinese peasantry in the 20th century.

Niccolò Pianciola is Associate Professor of History, Lingnan University, Hong Kong. His research focused on the history of colonization and decolonization during the late Tsarist Empire and the early Soviet Union, and on the great famine in Kazakhstan.
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2 thoughts on “Communism and Hunger by Andrea Graziosi”

    • Yes, the topics touched in this book are very interesting. It was also interesting to see how different the situation was between Ukraine and Kazakhstan for example, during the same period and under the same regime. Fascinating stuff.

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