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Stalin's water workers and their heritage: Industrialising nature in Russia, 1950 - present

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A surprising degree of continuity between engineering programs exists in the former Soviet Union from the late Stalin period to the present. While engineering organisations and institutions have changed their names, they have maintained a great deal of 'technological momentum' in their pursuit of the 'industrialisation of nature'. Massive nature transformation projects served multiple purposes, not only technical and economic, but social and educational in bringing masses of workers together in support of state legitimacy. Hubris has characterised the engineers and their programs. Many programs and institutions have been reborn under President Vladimir Putin in the twenty-first century.
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Keywords: Brezhnev; Putin; Russia; Stalin; geoengineering; hubris

Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: 01 April 2017

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  • The half-yearly journal Global Environment: A Journal of History and Natural and Social Sciences acts as a forum and echo chamber for ongoing studies on the environment and world history, with special focus on modern and contemporary topics. Our intent is to gather and stimulate scholarship that, despite a diversity of approaches and themes, shares an environmental perspective on world history in its various facets, including economic development, social relations, production government, and international relations.
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