Soviets in Space
The People of the USSR and the Race to the Moon
Imprint: Pen and Sword History
232 Pages, 6.1 x 9.1 in, 100 black and white illustrations
- January 2022
- In Stock
Within just over ten years, not only was Stalin dead and the relative freedoms of the Khrushchev 'Thaw' in progress, but the Soviet Union was ahead in the Space Race – beating the enormous wealth and resources of the USA, launching Soviet citizens from ordinary backgrounds quite literally into worlds beyond our own. The communist dream seemed alive and well.
The story of those years has rarely been told from a Soviet perspective: Cold War journalism and historical accounts written in the West tend to portray the space race in terms of ideological competition - with success and failure mirroring power and influence in a world divided between capitalism and communism. Whilst the military on both sides certainly benefited from the cutting edge technological advance of the space programs, for the people of the USSR the prestige of their successes offered proof that 'real existing socialism' was moving mankind onto new levels of peaceful progress. Agriculture and railway building initiatives tried to involved ordinary people in other pioneering projects to build socialism before the dream shattered in the 1980s.
Extensively illustrated with images from the time, this book looks at the years of Soviet space success, their background, the personalities involved, and their impact on the ordinary people of the USSR.