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4 A Coherent Theory of Bureaucracy

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Chapter Summary

By 1926, realignments within the party permitted Trotsky to return to the political offensive. In 1925 Zinoviev and Kamenev broke with Stalin and the leadership majority over a wide range of issues. Implicitly, the arguments of the New Opposition confirmed Trotsky's warnings about the dangers of party bureaucratism and of a resurgent right within the country. The following year Trotsky and his supporters joined forces with the Zinovievists to form the United Opposition, which challenged the economic, international, and political policies of the party leadership throughout 1926 and 1927. In the fire of this struggle, Trotsky was able to forge a coherent theory of Soviet bureaucracy based upon the classical Marxist analysis of bureaucracy. Trotsky also condemned Stalin's theory for its implications regarding economic policy. He argued that, even though contemporary history demonstrated the growth of international interdependence, the majority glorified the ideal of national self-reliance.

Keywords: coherent theory; Marxist; Soviet bureaucracy; Soviet Union; Stalin; Trotsky; Zinoviev

10.1163/9789004269538_006
/content/books/b9789004269538_006
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