The Building of BAM and Late Soviet Socialism
Publication Year: 2009
Published by: University of Pittsburgh Press
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My interest in the Baikal-Amur Mainline Railway (BAM) dates back to 1988, when I by chance encountered a videocassette copy of director Mikhail Pavlov’s 1987 documentary film...
List of Acronyms and Terms
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1. Introduction: The Project of the Century
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Within only two decades, the assessment of the Baikal-Amur Mainline Railway (BAM) and its effects on the Soviet Union transformed radically. In 1974, Leonid Brezhnev addressed the Seventeenth Komsomol Congress: “The Baikal-Amur Railway will...
2. Prometheanism versus Conservationism on the Railway
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An elaborate, officially generated propaganda apparatus heralded the construction of the BAM Railway as the vanguard of Soviet Prometheanism. This ideology promoted the notion that humankind...
3. Crime and Corruption in BAM Society
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As the BAM project progressed, the attitudes of BAMer youth became increasingly restive as their attention turned away from the building of a Communist society to the more practical goal of improving their ownmaterial status. As one...
4. Working Alone: Women on the Railway
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Through its official propaganda channels, the Soviet government emphasized the equal ability and dedication of male and female BAMers in all aspects of the railway’s construction. The Soviet Union was still concerned with solving the long-debated...
5. National Differentiation and Marginalization on the Railway
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Among the BAMer representatives of the USSR’s multiple nationalities along the railway project, there were many tensions as well as constructive relationships. Soviet officialdom was keenly...
6. The Rails of Fraternal Cooperation: BAMers Abroad and Foreigners at Home
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Another impetus behind BAM construction and its attendant propaganda campaign was the need to impress the Soviet Union’s allies and enemies, particularly the People’s Republic of China, with the...
7. Conclusion: Brezhnev’s Folly in Perspective
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Colonel-General G.I. Kogatko, the former head of BAM Zone Military Forces, wrote: “The history of BAM is not only one of a heroic accomplishment as many people have already written and said,...
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Page Count: 232
Illustrations: 21 b&w Illustrations
Publication Year: 2009